As part of his incessant campaign to undermine special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation, President Donald Trump on Thursday complained the federal probe was having a disastrous effect on his approval rating.
“Without the phony Russia Witch Hunt, and with all that we have accomplished in the last almost two years ... my approval rating would be at 75% rather than the 50% just reported by Rasmussen,” the president tweeted. “It’s called Presidential Harassment!”
Trump regularly accuses Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election of being a “witch hunt” despite dozens of indictments against people in connection to the case, including his former national security adviser.
But Trump’s claim on Thursday that his approval rating would be significantly higher if not for Mueller’s probe marks a new, creative attempt to stir up animosity toward the investigation.
Without evidence, Trump claimed Thursday that he would actually have a 75 percent approval rating if it weren’t for the investigation.
He incorrectly cited Rasmussen’s Thursday report, which stated his approval rating is 49 percent ― not 50 percent, as Trump tweeted.
Rasmussen Reports is largely viewed by polling experts as having a pro-Republican bias. Nonpartisan Gallup on Sunday reported Trump’s approval rating at 40 percent, up 2 percentage points from a week earlier.
HuffPost’s approval rating tracker shows Trump at 43 percent this week.
Gallup’s highest presidential approval rating ― 92 percent ― occurred during President George W. Bush’s first term in office, roughly two weeks after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Bush also saw one of Gallup’s lowest approval ratings, at 25 percent toward the end of his second term.
Trump hasn’t managed to surpass a 45 percent approval rating since assuming office in January 2017, according to Gallup.