UPDATE: As the New York Times reports, Trump is feeling the pressure:
President Trump has insisted that he is not going to compromise with Democrats to end the government shutdown, and that he is comfortable in his unbendable position. But privately, it’s sometimes a different story.
“We are getting crushed!” Mr. Trump told his acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, after watching some recent coverage of the shutdown, according to one person familiar with the conversation. “Why can’t we get a deal?”…
The president is confronted by a divided and partially shuttered government with an untested staff that has undergone yet another shake-up. Polls show that most Americans blame him for the government shutdown, and his advisers are warning him of its negative effects on the economy. And as the shutdown enters its 27th day on Thursday with no end in sight, most of his top aides would like him to find a way out.
Mr. Trump has told them he believes over time the country will not remember the shutdown, but it will remember that he staged a fight over his insistence that the southern border be protected. He wants Democrats to come back to the table agreeing with his position on a wall, and he does not understand why they have not.
Watch out for falling approval ratings.
There are no “winners” in a government shutdown. We are all losers when the government ceases to function, but Americans still have their own opinions on who should receive most of the blame. Despite efforts to shift responsibility for the shutdown to Democrats, Americans are consistently pinning this one on President Trump and Republicans.
As CNBC explains, Trump’s approval ratings are plummeting — even among his base:
President Donald Trump is hemorrhaging support amid a political standoff over his proposed border wall that has resulted in the longest government shutdown on record, according to polls.
As the shutdown of about a quarter of the federal government lumbers toward its fifth week, the president even appears to be losing favor with his core constituents, whose support for Trump until this point has been rock-solid since the 2016 campaign.
An NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist poll published Thursday found that Trump’s approval rating has slipped 3 percent from last month to 39 percent, while his disapproval has climbed 4 percentage points to 53 percent. [Pols emphasis]
And unlike in past political fights, the poll and other recent surveys indicate that some of the groups thought to comprise key parts of Trump’s base are not immune from the broader downward trend.
Trump’s approval rating among suburban men, long one of his strongest blocs of support, dropped from 51 to 42 percent, according to the NPR/PBS/Marist poll*. It’s probably no coincidence that a good chunk of suburban men have federal government jobs for which they are not receiving a paycheck. Trump is also underwater with Cardi B (presumably).
President Trump is still holding onto the idea that he could declare a national emergency to secure funding for his great big wall, but voters don’t like that idea, either. From Politico:
Only 36 percent of voters say they support Trump’s re-allocating money to pay for the border wall through a national emergency, while 51 percent oppose such a declaration. [Pols emphasis] Twice as many voters strongly oppose a national emergency, 41 percent, as strongly support it, 20 percent. And, as with much of the fight that has resulted in a government shutdown lasting more than three weeks, Trump has the support of the vast majority of Republican voters, 72 percent, but very few voters outside his political base.
Trump took his case for a border wall to the American people last week, delivering his first prime-time, Oval Office address in his two-year-old presidency. But the POLITICO/Morning Consult poll suggests that the president’s speech didn’t move the needle.
If President Trump wants to see better polling numbers, he’s going to have to pay for them. As Stephen Collinson writes for CNN, Trump is soon going to have to choose between preventing economic disaster and building his big wall.
*Pols note: All polling data should be considered (+/-) Laura Woods