CAPS - Harris Poll on Current Affairs

June 26, 2017

New Harvard CAPS – Harris Poll looks at public opinion on the Russia investigation, climate change, and terrorism.


The fifth Harvard CAPS - Harris Poll, released on Friday, June 23, finds continued optimism in the economy although perceptions about the direction on the country continue to fall for the fourth month in a row. The poll also finds that a majority of voters say the investigations into Russia and Trump are hurting the country (64%), and a majority (62%) believe they will lead to the end of the Russia inquiry rather than the impeachment of President Trump. Six in 10 voters say they would not impeach President Trump for his actions, and do not think the President’s interference with regard to former FBI director Comey constituted obstruction of justice.


Economic mood in the country remains strong with 44 percent of registered voters saying the economy is on the right track (vs. 38 percent on the wrong track). 61% of voters say the U.S. economy is strong, continuing an upward trend since February. At the site time 32 percent think the country is off on the right track, compared to 55% percent of voters who think it is on the wrong track. Optimism of the direction of the country has now fallen for the fourth month in a row. Healthcare is now the most important issue facing the country according to 44 percent of voters, followed closely by terrorism and national security (42%) and the economy and jobs (39%).


President Trump’s approval ratings saw a slight uptick to 48 percent (up 3 percent from May), with a majority of voters approving of the job the president is doing fighting terrorism (56%), on the economy (55%), and simulating jobs (55%). However, the President’s performance is viewed disapprovingly when it comes to administering the government (56%) and foreign affairs (55%). Voter’s are split 50-50 in their approval of President Trump’s performance on immigration.


Both the main political parties continue to suffer from low approval ratings with 63% of voters disapproving of the Republican party and 62% disapproving of the performance of the democratic party.


While a majority of voters think it was wrong for President Trump to pull out of the Paris agreement, 72% believe that the Trump administration should renegotiate the agreement. A majority of voters favors offering incentives and setting tougher emission standards to curb climate change. A majority of voters today (78%) also think political violence in the U.S. is increasing and over one third (35%) believe that the media is prompting political violence in the country.


The nationwide poll of 2,258 registered voters was conducted online by The Harris Poll in the United States between June 19-21, 2017. Full results from the poll are available HERE or at


The survey was conducted by The Harris Poll online within the United States between June 19-21, 2017 among 2,258 registered voters.

The results reflect a nationally representative sample. Results were weighted for age within gender, region, race/ethnicity, marital status, household size, income, employment, and education where necessary to align them with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents’ propensity to be online. The poll was supervised by Harvard Professor of Government and CAPS Faculty Director Stephen Ansolabehere, Mark Penn, and Dritan Nesho. Stephen Ansolabehere has 25 years experience conducting survey research and experimental research in the field of political science. Mark Penn is a former presidential pollster and has 40 years of polling experience. Dritan Nesho is a fellow at Harvard’s Institute for Quantitative Social Science.

Harris Insights and Analytics conducts the poll based on online methodologies they have been using for more than a decade and the results are donated to the Center for American Political Studies at Harvard University.

The results are represented as the results of the questions asked according to The Harris Poll methodology.