President Trump’s approval ratings are rising, driven by a roaring economy that has dulled the effects of a White House swarmed by controversies.
Republicans remain panicked over their prospects in 2018, with angst growing that the GOP will lose its majority in the House.
Yet even as those fears grow, Trump’s numbers are getting better.
The Associated Press and CNN released new polls this week showing 42 percent of Americans approve of Trump’s job performance, up 7 percentage points each from their surveys last month.
The number is historically low for a president 14 months into his tenure, but the jump suggests Trump is at least on an upward trend even as his party fights to hold on to its majority in the House.
One Republican lawmaker this week publicly talked about rumors of Speaker Paul Ryan’s (R-Wis.) exit, remarks that only underlined the sense that the House is in danger of falling to the Democrats.
A few factors outside the GOP’s control have contributed to the panic, including a new legislative map for Pennsylvania that gives Democrats opportunities to win several seats.
Lawmakers also blame the bad news surrounding Trump, which they say has crowded out talk of the GOP tax overhaul.
Trump has been hammered by a torrent of negative headlines related to staff shake-ups, battles with special counsel Robert Mueller and accusations that he had extramarital affairs with an adult-film star and a Playboy model.
Trump has stepped up his attacks on Mueller, frustrating some Republicans who fear that he might fire the special counsel in an effort to halt the investigation into Russian election meddling.
Such a move would spark a bipartisan backlash against Trump that could squelch any chance Republicans have of maintaining their congressional majorities.