‘It Was A Big Yawn’: Pollster Says Bannon Firing Didn’t Affect Trump’s Base


The departure of White House strategist Steve Bannon has not significantly affected GOP voters’ opinion of President Donald Trump, according to a poll released Tuesday.

The poll, conducted by Trump campaign pollster Tony Fabrizio, found that 48 percent of GOP voters did not allow Bannon’s firing to affect their opinions of Trump. Alternatively, just 4 percent of respondents reported that the firing made them feel “somewhat less favorable towards the President,” and 3 percent said it made them feel “Much less favorable” towards Trump.

Fabrizio’s results contradict the media speculation that followed Bannon’s Friday departure. Journalists and lawmakers alike argued that the firing would alienate Trump’s base, who viewed Bannon as a reliable representative for the particular brand of populist nationalism that won Trump the White House.

Newly-appointed Chief of Staff Gen. John Kelly began his tenure by asking Bannon to step down. The pair mutually agreed upon an Aug. 14 departure date, but later decided to move the date back to avoid the appearance that the firing was related to the violence that occurred in Charlottesville.

Bannon hastened his departure by contradicting Trump’s position on North Korea in an interview with The American Prospect, in which he also called for the dismissal of some in the administration.

The poll further demonstrated that GOP voters are far more disillusioned with the Republican controlled Congress than they are with Trump. Trump’s approval rating dropped from 62 percent to 50 percent among GOP voters from June to August, but respondents’ approval of Republicans in Congress slipped much more dramatically (from 36 percent to eight percent) during the same period.

This significant drop in GOP Congressional approval rating came after Congress failed to pass any Obamacare repeal legislation in early July. GOP leadership could not whip the 52 votes required to pass a repeal bill under budget rules after the Conservative and moderate wings of the party split over Medicaid funding and a host of other issues.

The poll relied on data from a June survey of 2,000 self-described GOP and GOP-leaning voters, and an August survey of 1,500 self-described GOP and GOP-leaning voters nationally.

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