As you probably are aware:
-Democrats demanded a roughly 3.5 trillion dollar “stimulus package” loaded with non-stimulus goodies.
-President Trump said no, and proposed a $1 trillion dollar alternative – with a few non-stimulus goodies of his own, but nothing like what Democrats were pushing.
-Democrats refused his offer and there was a stalemate…with congress about to adjourn, and reconvene in September, thus weeks away from doing anything at all for relief during the COVID-19 pandemic.
So, this past weekend, Trump signed four executive orders encompassing his version of what the relief package should be…and Democrats, predictably, howled with indignation.
But how does the public feel?
Well, here is a just-published poll, conducted by yougov.org, which might provide some insight:
“Do you approve or disapprove of the executive order President Trump signed on Saturday which he says will extend unemployment benefits and defer payroll?”
Assuming these data are accurate (always a big “if” with political polls), the general public approves of President Trump’s action by 55% to 27% (18% are not sure). Even 33% of Biden Voters approve of it with 50% disapproving.
And, most importantly – because they are the “swing” voters who generally decide elections – independents support President Trump’s executive orders by 51% – 26%. That is a two-to-one margin for Trump’s action, and is almost parallel to the support given by Republicans.
I again emphasize that this, and any, political poll is inherently suspect. But if I were a Democrat, I would be grinding my teeth in anguish and frustration over those numbers.
How do the above poll results enable Democrats to credibly attack Trump’s action?
Here’s a hint: what Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi said last week, the day before talks broke down:
“We are miles apart in our values. Perhaps you mistook them for somebody who gave a damn. That isn’t the case. This is very far apart.”
Does this play well now? With most of the country, including most independents, in sync with what President Trump did? Not likely.
That said, I’m sure Democrats will try to come up with some other way of beating up on Trump’s executive orders. We’ll talk more about this when they do.