More Americans now have an unfavorable than a favorable view of Hillary Rodham Clinton, according to a new Associated Press-GfK poll that finds negative ratings of the former secretary of state have increased over the past few months, especially among Democrats.
Still, Clinton’s potential Republican rivals are also generally viewed in an unfavorable light, are unfamiliar to large swathes of Americans, or both.
Five things to know about public opinion on Clinton and the Republican candidates for president:
CLINTON’S RATINGS DROPPING
Just 39 percent of Americans have a favorable view of Clinton, while 49 percent have an unfavorable view, according to the new survey. In an AP-GfK poll conducted at the end of April, 46 percent had a favorable opinion and just 41 percent had an unfavorable opinion of Clinton.
The percentage of Democrats giving Clinton positive marks fell from 81 percent in April to 70 percent in the July poll, while nearly a quarter of Democrats now say they see Clinton in an unfavorable light. Positive ratings of Clinton also fell among men, from 44 percent to 34 percent. Forty-five percent of women expressed favorable views of Clinton.
The downturn for Clinton makes her at least somewhat less popular than President Barack Obama among Americans overall, 46 percent of whom have a favorable opinion of the president, and among Democrats, 82 percent of whom have a favorable view. Impressions of Obama, both overall and among Democrats, have remained constant since April, the poll shows.
FEWER SEE CLINTON AS HONEST, DECISIVE
The poll finds that 66 percent of Americans think the word “honest” describes Clinton only slightly well or not at all well, slightly more than the 61 percent who said so in April. Four in 10 Democrats say the word only describes Clinton slightly well or not at all well.
The percentage calling Clinton at least somewhat inspiring slipped from 44 percent to 37 percent.
Even the percentage saying Clinton is at least somewhat “decisive,” previously a strong point, fell from 56 percent in April to 47 percent in the new poll.
Perhaps most concerning for Clinton, just 40 percent of Americans in the new poll say the word “compassionate” describes her at least somewhat well, while 58 percent say it describes her only slightly well or less.
By contrast, 56 percent of Americans in a 2008 AP-Knowledge Networks poll considered presidential candidate Barack Obama to be at least somewhat compassionate.
RIVALS UNPOPULAR TOO
Clinton isn’t the only candidate with underwater ratings. In fact, nearly all the Republican candidates for president are viewed more negatively than positively, some of them by large margins. The only Republican candidate with even a slightly net positive rating is former neurosurgeon Ben Carson, viewed favorably by 20 percent of Americans, unfavorably by 15 percent, and an unknown to another 62 percent.
Americans are about as likely to hold favorable and unfavorable views of one other candidate, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, but 43 percent were unable to rate him.
The poll shows that negative ratings of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush are on the rise, at 44 percent, up from 36 percent in April.
POOR RATINGS FOR TRUMP
Least popular of all is Donald Trump, viewed favorably by just 28 percent of Americans and unfavorably by 58 percent. On the other hand, nearly half of Republicans have a positive view of Trump, compared with just 4 in 10 with a negative view.
About a third of whites, but just 16 percent of Hispanics and 10 percent of blacks, have a favorable view of Trump. Thirty-seven percent of those who say immigration is a very important issue to them view Trump in a positive light.
The AP-GfK Poll of 1,004 adults was conducted online Thursday to Monday, using a sample drawn from GfK’s probability-based KnowledgePanel, which is designed to be representative of the U.S. population. The margin of sampling error for all respondents is plus or minus 3.4 percentage points.
Respondents were first selected randomly using phone or mail survey methods, and later interviewed online. People selected for KnowledgePanel who didn’t otherwise have access to the Internet were provided access at no cost to them.
AP-GfK Poll: http://www.ap-gfkpoll.com
Copyright © 2015 Capitol Hill Blue
Copyright © 2015 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved