Donald Trump becomes most unpopular president ever after transgender ban tweet
Donald Trump has been in office for little over six months.
The Republican maverick shocked pundits and pollsters when he came the 45th POTUS in last year’s election.
Despite the surprise victory against Democrat Hillary Clinton – who won the most votes in the election – Trump began his term with decent ratings.
His approval ratings, though lower than some predecessors, were at a reasonable 44%.
They slowly declined from 44.8 in January, to just over 40% by the end of May.
From there, according to top pollster Nate Silver, his approval ratings were stable for 11 weeks.
But since the Trans military ban was declared, President Trump has seen a significant decline in support.
A Quinnipiac University poll showed the president had a 33% approval rating and a 61% disapproval rating.
That’s 10% wiped off Trump’s approval ratings in just a few weeks – more than enough Americans to prevent his re-election.
The telephone poll, conducted between July 27 and August 1, surveyed 1,125 voters, and had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.4 percentage points.
The new poll result makes him the least popular president of modern times – with all of his predecessors having higher ratings at the six month mark.
It comes after he reversed an Obama policy allowing transgender people to serve in the US military.
In June of last year, President Obama asked the Pentagon to lift its long-held ban on transgender soldiers serving openly in the military.
The Department of Defense was given until July 1 of this year to implement the policy, with LGBT advocates hopeful that transgender soldiers would finally be able to serve openly.
The decision was delayed by Trump’s Defence Secretary James ‘Mad Dog’ Mattis – then the President confirmed that he would reverse the decision and put the ban back in place.
President Trump tweeted: “After consultation with my Generals and military experts, please be advised that the United States Government will not accept or allow transgender individuals to serve in any capacity in the U.S. Military.
“Our military must be focused on decisive and overwhelming victory and cannot be burdened with the tremendous medical costs and disruption that transgender in the military would entail. Thank you.”
Though Trump claimed the decision was taken “after consultation with Generals”, the Pentagon had not made any formal objection to the plan, and the decision rests entirely with the President.
The decision was reportedly pushed by Vice President Mike Pence, a strong opponent of LGBT rights.
The Human Rights Campaign attacked the White House for a “deeply troubling and patently unpatriotic assault on military families”.
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The group added: “[Trump and Pence should] be working to ensure all service members and their families are getting the support and resources they need and deserve, regardless of their gender identity or sexual orientation.”
The President famously dodged the draft four times during the Vietnam war, and has never served in the military.
Trump’s new ban is reminiscent of rules that banned gay people from openly serving in the military.
Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, which was repealed by President Obama in 2013, led to the expulsion of hundreds of gay and lesbian officials in the military.
However, the ban on transgender people under separate medical rules was only lifted in 2016.