Only about a third of Americans view President Donald Trump as trustworthy, far fewer than any of his three immediate predecessors in the White House at this stage of their presidencies. Just 37 percent of respondents to a Pew Research Center survey released Thursday responded they would describe the current president as trustworthy.
By comparison, at similar points in their presidencies, Barack Obama was seen as trustworthy by 76 percent of Americans, George W. Bush by 60 percent and Bill Clinton by 63 percent.
Trump’s interpretation of the truth came under scrutiny as soon as he entered the White House last month. He repeatedly disputed photographic evidence showing his inauguration crowd was significantly smaller than for Obama’s first inauguration eight years earlier, leading senior White House adviser Kellyanne Conway to coin the phrase “alternative facts.”
But his bending of the truth dates further back. PolitiFact awarded Trump with its 2015 Lie of the Year for his statements on the campaign trail. Meanwhile, in analyzing Trump’s remarks since his campaign, the website found that 60 percent of his statements were either “mostly false,” “false” or “pants on fire.” Only 4 percent of his statements were rated as being “true.”
But his ratings on trustworthiness are far from the only numbers that are less than favorable right now. The same Pew survey indicated 39 percent of Americans considered the former host of “The Apprentice” well-informed. That compares to 79 percent for Obama, 62 percent for Bush and 79 percent for Clinton at a similar stage of their stays in the White House.
Trump also trails his predecessors by some distance in perceptions of being both a good communicator and being able to get things done.
Also in the Pew poll, which surveyed 1,503 adults Feb. 7-12, 59 percent disapproved of his executive order banning travel to the United States for people from seven Muslim-majority countries. Overall, only 39 percent said they approved of his job performance.