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57 percent of veterans support Trump, national poll shows

President Donald J. Trump disembarks Marine One on the South Lawn of the White House Sunday, June 30, 2019, concluding his trip to Japan for the G20 and historic visit to North Korea. (Official White House Photo by Joyce N. Boghosian/Released)
July 12, 2019

A new poll this week revealed that the majority of veterans support President Trump as commander in chief.

A national poll from May and June sampling 1,300 veterans revealed that 57 percent approved of Trump, a percentage higher than that of the general American public, according to Pew Research Center on Wednesday.

Among the general public, just 41 percent approved of Trump’s performance as commander in chief.

Of the 57-percent approval among veterans, 49 percent said they “approve very strongly” while eight percent said they “approve not so strongly.”

Veterans who identified themselves as Republicans were overwhelmingly supportive of Trump, with 92 percent approving of his performance. This was again higher than the 81 percent of Republicans in the general public that support Trump.

Most veterans tend to lean Republican and “are more likely to favor Trump-supported policies, such as the ban on transgender people serving in the military and the deployment of troops to the U.S.-Mexican border, and they are more likely to approve of Trump’s approach to dealing with key allies and adversaries,” the poll found.

Additionally, 48 percent of veterans believe Trump has made the military stronger, but 41 percent said they wished he would listen more to the advice of those leading the military

Of the 58 percent of veterans who said they trusted Trump’s decision making on military force and nuclear weapons, more than a third said they trust him “a great deal” to make those decisions.

Similarly, 58 percent of veterans said they supported  Trump’s decision to send active-duty troops to the southern U.S. border to combat the immigration crisis, with 42 percent saying they “strongly approved” of the policy.

The poll also showed that 53 percent of veterans agreed with Trump withdrawing from the Iran nuclear deal, and 52 percent agreed with his decision to ban transgender troops from entering the military.

One thing that did not draw majority support was Trump’s plans for a new stand-alone Space Force within the military, with 53 percent of veterans not in favor. Yet 40 percent think there should be an increase in the military budget and 43 percent there should not be an increase or a decrease.

Two-thirds of veterans that participated in the Pew poll said they believe Trump has a deep respect for veterans.

Trump has found similar levels of approval from active-duty troops.

survey conducted by Military Times in October 2018 showed that 44 percent of active duty troops approved of Trump as president and 43 did not approve. The survey also showed that 60 percent of service members thought Trump was doing a better job than Obama did in regard to the military.