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Most Republicans Follow Trump, Not GOP Senators

Monday, October 30, 2017

Two prominent Republican senators who have decided not to seek reelection have been increasingly vocal in their criticism of President Trump in recent days. But most GOP voters want their party to follow Trump, not Senate Republicans.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 57% of Likely GOP Voters believe the Republican Party should be more like the president. Just 33% feel the party should be more like Senate Republicans instead. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

But 48% of GOP voters think it is more important for Trump to keep other elected Republicans on his side than for him to pursue his own agenda. Forty-two percent (42%), however, say it’s more important for the president to go his own way rather than worry about party unity.

Forty-nine percent (49%) of Republicans say it is important to them that some GOP senators criticize the man who was elected as a Republican to the presidency, including 32% who say it is Very Important.  For just as many (47%), the senators’ criticism is unimportant, with 19% who say it is Not At All Important.

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The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on October 26 and 29, 2017 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

Fifty percent (50%) of Republican voters think the president’s criticism of senators in his own party is good for the country. Only 35% believe the president should continue to rely on congressional Republicans to pass his agenda.

Seventy-one percent (71%) of Democrats say the Republican Party should be more like GOP senators than like Trump, a view shared by a plurality (44%) of unaffiliated voters.

Democrats attach a lot more importance to the senators’ criticism of the president than Republican and unaffiliated voters do. Unaffiliateds are the least concerned about Trump keeping other elected Republicans on his side.

Among voters who believe the GOP should be more like Senate Republicans, 86% say the senators’ criticism of Trump is important to them. Sixty-six percent (66%) of those who want the Republican Party to be more like the president regard the criticism as unimportant.

Eighty-seven percent (87%) of voters who Strongly Approve of the job Trump is doing say the GOP should be more like him. Eighty-one percent (81%) of those who Strongly Disapprove of the president’s job performance think the party should be more like Senate Republicans.

Voters in general, including 38% of GOP voters, are more likely to believe Republicans in Congress are the bigger problem for Trump than Democrats are

Sixty-seven percent (67%) of Republicans think their representatives in Congress have lost touch with the party's base, consistent with findings for years.

Only 19% of Republicans – and 11% of all voters – rate the performance of the GOP-controlled Senate as good or excellent.

Fifty-five percent (55%) of GOP voters share an unfavorable opinion of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, and 36% think it would be good for the country if McConnell stepped down.

Additional information from this survey and a full demographic breakdown are available to Platinum Members only.

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