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Poll: 70 percent of Americans say things in D.C. are out of control

Half of pollsters say pres. sometime loses touch
Posted at 12:40 PM, Feb 17, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-17 17:13:41-05

A new poll is offering a sobering assessment of the early days of Donald Trump's presidency, the majority of respondents saying Washington D.C. is out of control.

In the poll released Friday by SurveyUSA, an independent, non-partisan, apolitical research company, polled 1,500 adults across the nation online on Feb. 16, before, during, and after the president's notable news conference.

During Thursday's news conference, President Trump said his administration was running like a "fine-tuned machine," brushing off reports of disorganization and information leaks within his administration. 

"The media is trying to attack our administration because they know we are following through on pledges that we made, and they're not happy about it, for whatever reason," Pres. Trump said. "I turn on the news and I see stories of chaos. And yet it is the exact opposite. The administration is running like a fine-tuned machine."

Related: Trump considers mobilizing 100,000 National Guard troops for immigration raids

Of those polled, respondents told SurveyUSA said they focused on current events for at least one hour a day. Those individuals were asked a range of questions about their take on President Trump.

Thirty-nine percent of respondents said Pres. Trump was making America worse, while 32 percent said he was on his way to "making America great again." Twenty percent said it is still too early to tell whether he had an impact.

Of those asked whether things in Washington D.C. are under control, 70 percent said things are out of control and only 15 percent said things were under control. 

More highlights from the report, according to SurveyUSA:

  • 50 percent: Donald Trump was elected president "fair and square." 
  • 38 percent: Mr. Trump was helped across the finish line. 
  • 13 percent: Mr. Trump always tells the truth. 
  • 43 percent: Mr. Trump knows when he's telling the truth and knows when he's making things up.
  • 35 percent: Mr. Trump is unable to distinguish between what is true and what is made up.
  • 33 percent: Mr. Trump sees the world as it is. 
  • 49 percent: Mr. Trump sometimes loses touch with reality. 
  • 32 percent: Mr. Trump is on his way toward making America great again. 
  • 39 percent: Mr. Trump is making America worse than ever. 
  • 15 percent: things in D.C. are under control 
  • 70 percent: things in Washington DC are out of control. 
  • A plurality of independents and moderates say Mr. Trump is making America worse than ever. 
  • 69 percent of independents and 71 percent of moderates: things in Washington D.C. are out of control. 
  • Half of moderates and a plurality of independents: Mr. Trump sometimes loses touch with reality. 
  • A plurality of independents and moderates: Mr. Trump does not always tell the truth, but at least he knows when he is making things up. 
  • Just 33 percent of Republicans and just 24 percent of conservatives: Mr. Trump always tells the truth. 

SurveyUSA released a statement alongside the poll results: 

"A free press is essential to the functioning of a free society. Labeling the work of journalists as 'fake news' is dangerous. To then go beyond that, and label the work of research scientists as 'fake polls' calls all of Democracy into question," Jay H. Leve, president and CEO of SurveyUSA, said. "It silences the very individuals who elected you, takes power away from 'We, The People,' and attempts to consolidate that power in an omnipotent being."