Trump's indictments: Polling shows half of Americans want him to suspend his campaign, and more takeaways

Despite what he claims, he isn't getting a continued bounce in support.

August 27, 2023, 2:29 PM

The most recent ABC News/Ipsos poll, conducted Aug. 15-17, showed some problems for former President Donald Trump in terms of public opinion on his mounting criminal charges amid his comeback bid for the White House.

The poll, released after his fourth indictment, over efforts to reverse his 2020 loss in Georgia, shows that he's not getting the post-indictment bounce with Americans that he's been touting on the campaign trail.

"Any time they file an indictment, we go way up in the polls," Trump boasted during a Republican Party dinner in Montgomery, Alabama, earlier this month. "We need one more indictment to close out this election. One more indictment, and this election is closed out."

But the ABC News/Ipsos survey -- which follows three other polls this year in the wake of Trump's charges in three other indictments, all of which he denies -- suggest that while Republicans are still largely supporting him, he faces issues with the broader public.

President Joe Biden, whom Trump could face next year in a rematch of the 2020 race, is also grappling with an anemic favorability rating, seemingly not receiving a boost even as many Americans say they want Trump to suspend his campaign.

PHOTO: Former President Donald Trump speaks at the 56th annual Silver Elephant Gala in Columbia, S.C., Aug. 5, 2023.
Former President Donald Trump speaks at the 56th annual Silver Elephant Gala in Columbia, S.C., Aug. 5, 2023.
Artie Walker Jr./AP

No continued post-indictment bounce with GOP but still primary front-runner

Trump is now charged in four criminal cases: in federal court in Florida and Washington and in state court in Georgia and New York. He denies all wrongdoing and has been touting his indictments as political rocket fuel endearing him further to a base that he's helped make skeptical of the criminal justice system investigating him.

According to FiveThirtyEight, the former president did see a primary polling boost after his first indictment, in New York. His fundraising in the second quarter of 2023, amid his mounting legal troubles, was also nearly double the previous period.

But, despite what he has claimed, the most recent ABC News/Ipsos poll, shows no noticeable improvement for him among Republicans since a previous ABC News/Ipsos poll, conducted early this month after Trump was indicted for the third time, in relation to Jan. 6 and the push to overturn his election defeat.

Early this month, 20% of Republicans said Trump should suspend his campaign and 14% said he should have been charged in the Jan. 6 indictment.

These results are unchanged in the latest ABC News/Ipsos poll, with 20% of Republicans saying Trump should suspend his campaign and 15% indicating he should have been charged in the Georgia indictment.

More broadly, Trump's favorable/unfavorable ratings with Americans remain severely underwater according to the latest poll: 31% favorable and 55% unfavorable -- essentially unchanged from the previous poll.

At the same time, Trump remains the clear favorite so far for the Republican presidential nomination according to FiveThirtyEight’s polling average, with a nearly 40-point lead nationally over nearest rival Ron DeSantis

Half of Americans want Trump out of the race

Early this month, 49% of adults said in the ABC News/Ipsos poll that Trump should suspend his campaign -- and 50% say the same in the most recent survey. Only about a third of Americans in these polls don’t think Trump should suspend his campaign, with the rest undecided.

That figure portends some struggles for Trump should he make it to the general election.

Republican critics of Trump have for months lamented his primacy in the primary, insisting that he would be a liability in a general election given his baggage -- even as his campaign has decried the charges as "un-American."

"All this is gonna continue to weigh him down," Mike DuHaime, an adviser to former New Jersey governor and current GOP presidential candidate Chris Christie, told ABC News before the latest ABC News/Ipsos poll's release.

"He's been pretty skillful to this point, but I do think the weight will eventually get to him," DuHaime said of Trump.

PHOTO: Former President Donald Trump arrives for an arraignment hearing at NYS Supreme Court, April 4, 2023, in New York.
Former President Donald Trump arrives for an arraignment hearing at NYS Supreme Court, April 4, 2023, in New York.
Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images, FILE

Biden remains stuck in the doldrums

Despite the public's views about Trump's indictments, Biden continues to struggle with his favorability rating among American adults, according to the recent ABC News/Ipsos polls.

Early this month, 33% of adults said they had a favorable view of the president.

In the latest poll, 31% of adults say they have a favorable view of Biden -- the same as Trump's favorability rating.

Democrats have sought to play down concerns over Biden's viability, seeking instead to tout his legislative wins in office and the party's relative success in last year's midterms.