Thanksgiving comes amid a divisive political climate, and most Americans would like to avoid discussing politics. A majority of voters think Donald Trump should stop tweeting. And Barack Obama’s approval rating continues to soar. This is HuffPollster for Wednesday, November 23, 2016.
HuffPollster is taking the rest of this week off for the Thanksgiving holiday and will return next week on a more limited schedule.
MOST AMERICANS DON’T PLAN TO TALK POLITICS AT THANKSGIVING - HuffPollster: “Most Americans are hoping to enjoy their Thanksgiving dinner without a helping of politics, a new HuffPost/YouGov survey finds. A 53 percent majority of those celebrating the holiday say they’re not very or not at all likely to discuss politics during their dinner, with 37 percent saying they’re somewhat or very likely to bring up the subject. Even fewer anticipate things getting heated. Just 3 percent say they’re very likely to get into a political argument during dinner, while 8 percent say they’re somewhat likely to do so, and 80 percent that they’re not very likely or not at all likely to get into a fight....most of the public doesn’t have plans for a bipartisan Thanksgiving. Just 26 percent say they expect to see both Trump and Clinton supporters at their dinner, while 36 percent say everyone they’re sharing the holiday with will have backed the same candidate.” [HuffPost]
Over a third of Americans say the idea of discussing politics is stressful - Rachel Tillman: “With Thanksgiving around the corner and a divisive election in the rearview mirror, millions of Americans expect to talk politics with friends and family members over the holiday, and more than a third say the idea of those conversations stresses them out. According to an online survey conducted by ABC News and its partner SSRS, 45 percent of Americans foresee a side of political conversation with their turkey and cranberry sauce, and 38 percent said the idea of such talk is at least somewhat stressful, with 14 percent saying it is very stressful.” [ABC]
Less divisive? Stuffing and pumpkin pie - Per a 2015 HuffPost/YouGov poll, a 32 percent plurality of Americans pick stuffing as their favorite Thanksgiving side dish, with mashed potatoes trailing at 22 percent. Healthier options such as roasted squash and brussels sprouts garnered little enthusiasm. Thirty-nine percent of Americans preferred to finish off their dinner with pumpkin pie, with apple taking second at 26 percent. [HuffPost on side dishes and pies]
VOTERS WANT TRUMP TO STOP TWEETING - Quinnipiac University: “President-elect Donald Trump should shut down his personal Twitter account, American voters say 59 - 35 percent, according to a Quinnipiac University national poll released today. While they have mixed views on his personal qualities, American voters say 59 - 37 percent that they are ‘optimistic about the next four years with Donald Trump as president’...Trump will be a better president than Barack Obama, 41 percent of voters say, while 40 percent say he will be a worse president, and 11 percent say the two will be about the same. As president, Trump will act better than he did during the campaign, 61 percent of voters say, while 25 percent say he will act the same and 11 percent say he will act worse. Trump’s behavior since the election has made them feel better about him as president, 36 percent of voters say, while 14 percent feel worse and 50 percent have not changed their opinion.” [Quinnipiac]
OBAMA’S HIGH APPROVAL DOESN’T EXTEND TO DEMOCRATIC PARTY - Jennifer Agiesta: “Barack Obama has gotten his last post-election bump as president, but perceptions of his party have moved in the opposite direction since Election Day, according to a new CNN/ORC poll. Obama’s approval rating in the poll stands at 57%, his highest since September 2009. That figure is on par with Ronald Reagan’s approval rating shortly after the presidential election in 1988, and approaching the level reached by Bill Clinton in November 2000…. Improvements in Obama’s approval rating seem to stem largely from Republicans and Republican-leaning independents. Among that group of leaned Republicans, 22% now approve of Obama’s job performance, up from 16% in late October. Among Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents, it has held steady at 91%.... Favorability ratings for the Democratic Party dropped 6 points since October, and the 54% who hold an unfavorable opinion of it is the highest in CNN/ORC or CNN/USA Today/Gallup polling dating back to 1992. Among Democrats, favorability ratings for the party have dipped to 81%, down 10 points since late October. That’s the lowest mark Democrats have given their own party in CNN polling in more than a decade.” [CNN]
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WEDNESDAY’S ‘OUTLIERS’ - Links to the best of news at the intersection of polling, politics and political data:
-Justin McCarthy finds Americans’ economic confidence remaining positive post-election. [Gallup]
-Nate Silver explains that education was a more powerful predictor of voting for Trump than income. 
-Michael Tesler shows that racial resentment was even more powerful in the 2016 election than in 2008 or 2012. [WashPost]
-Jim Tankersley notes that Hillary Clinton won the counties accounting for most of the nation’s economic activity. [WashPost]
-Andrew Perrin looks at who the quarter of Americans are that haven’t read a book in the past year. [Pew Research]