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Trump popularity edges up during impeachment

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Strong economic figures have helped US President Donald Trump to his highest approval ratings ever, despite impeachment, a new poll found on Monday.

[WASHINGTON] Strong economic figures have helped US President Donald Trump to his highest approval ratings ever, despite impeachment, a new poll found on Monday.

Although the Quinnipiac University survey said Mr Trump has a high of 43 per cent for his job approval, that's still far below nearly all previous presidents in modern times at the same point in their administration.

According to the poll, carried out December 11-15, 52 per cent of Americans still disapprove of Mr Trump's job performance. Mr Trump has been mired in those unusually low ratings for nearly his entire presidency.

But the latest figures show a progression indicating support growing for Mr Trump despite the impeachment process threatening his presidency.

The House of Representatives could vote to impeach for abuse of office and obstruction of Congress as early as this Wednesday.

A Quinnipiac poll earlier in December had 41 per cent approval and 55 per cent disapproval, while an October poll, done before impeachment hearings began, put those figures at 38 and 58 per cent.

Much of the support for Mr Trump appears to be linked to positive feelings about the economy, which is in a period of strong growth, with record low unemployment.

Nearly three quarters, 73 per cent, saw the economy as good or excellent, the poll found.

"That view of a strong economy seems to be helping President Trump match his highest job approval rating since being elected, despite facing becoming the third president in US history to be impeached," said Quinnipiac polling analyst Mary Snow.

The poll found little changed figures on impeachment, with 45 backing Mr Trump's impeachment and removal from office and 51 per cent opposing. Support for impeachment and removal back in October was at 45-48 per cent.

Not surprisingly, the poll looks radically different when the answers are divided by party. Ninety five per cent of Republicans oppose removing Mr Trump from office, while 86 per cent of Democrats are in favour.

AFP