South Carolinians among the strongest supporters of President Trump, poll finds

9 out of 10 S.C. Democrats disapprove of "45"

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GAGE SKIDMORE
  • Gage Skidmore
President Donald Trump's national approval rating stands at 32 percent, but South Carolinians are bucking the trend by a few points, with 42 percent of Palmetto State residents approving of the commander-in-chief.

To be clear, "45" still has a 49 percent disapproval rating in the Palmetto State, and his approval rating varies widely among Democrats and Republicans, according to poll results released by Winthrop University on Thursday.

The poll is based on responses from 1,007 South Carolinians contacted in late February and March.



Nearly every single S.C. Democrat (9 out of 10) disapproves of Trump, but among those who lean Republican or fully identify with the GOP, the results are almost inverted, with 82 percent supporting the president.

When it comes to Congress, only 16 percent of South Carolinians approve of what federal lawmakers are doing, but support for S.C. Senator Lindsey Graham has only grown along with his support of Trump. Seventy-four percent of Republicans approve of him, while only one fourth of Democrats do.

Overall, Graham's approval rating in S.C. stands at almost half.
"Graham’s approval has benefited from his defense of, and alignment with, President Trump," said poll director Scott Huffman in a statement. "While Graham’s numbers used to lag those of other Republicans among GOP identifiers, since he has taken up the President’s banner on most every issue, his approval among Republicans in South Carolina has steadily risen.”

S.C. residents said the most important problem facing the U.S. is immigration, followed by politicians/government, Trump himself, and racism.

As gun reform bills await their fate in the state legislature and in the U.S. Congress, a staggering majority of South Carolinians — 80 percent — said they would support legislation that requires background checks for gun purchasers, according to the Winthrop poll.

Currently, the FBI has just three days to look into a buyer's history before the seller is allowed to proceed with the sale. The short window came to be known as the "Charleston loophole" after a white supremacist killed nine black parishioners at Mother Emanuel church in downtown Charleston in 2015. The shooter was able to buy the gun he used in the massacre after the three-day mark passed.

The federal bill to close the loophole, sponsored by S.C. Reps. Jim Clyburn and Joe Cunningham, passed the U.S. House on Feb. 28, but it stands little chance in the Republican-controlled Senate. President Trump said he'd veto the bill anyway.
The S.C. Senate bill, sponsored by Charleston Sen. Marlon Kimpson, currently stands in the Judiciary Committee in the Republican-controlled Senate.

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