Record Partisan Gap Shadows Rise in Trump Approval Ratings

President Donald Trump pauses as he speaks at the 2019 House Republican Conference Member Retreat Dinner in Baltimore, Thursday, Sept. 12, 2019. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

(CN) – President Donald Trump’s approval ratings rose slightly from last month while partisanship is at an all-time high, according to a new poll.

The latest Gallup Poll, released Thursday, reports a small boost for Trump’s job approval numbers among Americans. Trump’s current approval rating sits at 43% according to the poll, a small but notable increase from 39% approval last month.

Thursday’s number is one point higher than Trump’s 2019 approval rating average. His approval rating this year have fluctuated between 37%, reported in January during the longest government shutdown in U.S. history, and 46% in April on strong economic performance numbers and the release of the Mueller report.

Trump’s approval stats underscore deep partisanship division, according to the poll. An overwhelming 91% of Republicans say the leader of their party is doing well in office, while only 5% of Democrats approve of his performance – an 86-point gap that ties the record for largest in a single poll.

Independents, meanwhile, give Trump an approval rating of 38%, continuing to straddle the middle of the road of party politics.

Only three U.S. presidents have experienced such polarized numbers, according to historical polling data. President Barack Obama experienced an 86-point party gap during his re-election campaign in 2012, while President George W. Bush saw an 83-point gay in 2004, also during his re-election.

No other president in the history of the poll saw a party approval gap higher than 80 points. The closest was Ronald Regan, who had a 70-point gap during his 1984 re-election campaign.

These numbers show that polarization drawn across party lines is highest whenever a sitting president vies for another four years in office. With the 2020 race already underway and commanding headlines, these divided approval numbers are likely to increase as Election Day approaches.

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