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NBC poll: Majority in South disapprove of Trump, Congress

April 12th, 2018

— Just less than half of all adults in the southern United States approve of President Donald Trump, according to survey results released Thursday.

An NBC News poll conducted through a partnership with SurveyMonkey focused on the attitudes of southerners regarding issues that will be important in the 2018 midterm elections.

Many southern states have been the focus of attention since the 2016 election, and election results from southern states may be decisive in determining which party will control the House or Senate, NBC News reports.

The results from more than 15,000 people detailed approval ratings for state and national government as well opinions on topics ranging from immigration to taxes.

Trump approval

Across the South, 48 percent of people polled said they approve of Trump, while 51 percent disapprove. Nationwide, 43 percent of Americans approve of the president, while 55 percent disapprove.

Congress approval

Survey results show 27 percent of southerners believe Congress is doing a good job, while 69 percent disapprove of the work they’re doing. National results show 24 percent of Americans approve of the way Congress handles its job, while 73 percent disapprove.

State approval

Southerners have shown a lack of optimism in the way their state legislatures are handling their jobs, with 49 percent of those surveyed saying they approve of their state legislature and 48 percent disapproving.

2018 midterm elections

Southerners are split when it comes to how they plan to vote in the midterm elections, with 42 percent saying they would vote for a Republican candidate and 40 percent saying they will vote for the Democratic candidate.

Nationally, 44 percent of Americans said they would vote for the Democratic candidate, and 38 percent will vote for the Republican candidate.


Southerners largely approve of their state’s economic affairs, with 69 percent saying they rate the state economy as good.

When it comes to the national economy, 66 percent of southerners say they approve, while 30 percent disapprove. Comparatively, 63 percent of adults nationwide approve of the national economy, and 34 percent disapprove.

Infrastructure and taxes

When it comes to maintaining roads, bridges and other infrastructure, 56 percent of southerners say they think the state government is doing a good job, while 42 percent think their state is doing a bad job. This is a drastic difference from a nationwide poll, where more than half of respondents said their state government is doing a poor job maintaining infrastructure.

A majority of all southerners, as well as a majority of all Americans, said they would be willing to pay higher taxes to fund improvements on infrastructure and improve public schools in their state.


More than two-thirds of all southerners (66 percent) said they believe undocumented immigrants working in the United States should be offered a chance to apply for legal status, while 28 percent believe they should be deported.

Nationally, survey results showed 70 percent believe undocumented immigrants should be offered the chance to apply for legal status, while 26 percent believe they should be deported.

Same-sex marriage

A majority of southerners (55 percent) said they support same-sex marriage, while 42 percent said they oppose it. Nationally, 64 percent of Americans said they support same-sex marriage, while 33 percent were opposed.

The survey results were part of a collection of six polls that were released as part of a collaboration with the Penn Program on Opinion Research and Election Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Mississippi, Vanderbilt University and Mississippi Today.

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