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    Americans’ outlook on the economy positive ahead of inauguration

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     President-elect Donald Trump waves as he walks out of the elevator in the lobby of Trump Tower in New York, Friday, Jan. 13, 2017. (Evan Vucci/AP Photo)

    President-elect Donald Trump waves as he walks out of the elevator in the lobby of Trump Tower in New York, Friday, Jan. 13, 2017. (Evan Vucci/AP Photo)

    NewsWorks Tonight host Dave Heller sits down for his weekly conversation with Gallup’s Frank Newport to talk about trends in U.S. opinion.

    Much interest these days is in how Donald Trump is going to be evaluated once he takes office next week. One insight is provided by asking Americans to approve of his handling the transition so for. This week, we updated just that.

    This approval rating can help predict his initial approval rating after the inauguration — and it’s not good news.  Approval of his handling the transition is now down to 44 percent.  By contrast, Barack Obama had an 83 percent approval rating, G.W. Bush 61 percent, and Bill Clinton 68 percent, for handling their transitions upon their first elections.

    Trump’s transition approval is about 10-points lower than Obama’s current approval for handling the presidency.  The only other recent president whose transition approval was not higher than the outgoing president was G.W. Bush (compared to outgoing Clinton).

    Trump’s personal favorable rating is now at 44 percent as well. This is the lowest favorable rating for any incoming president since we began asking the favorable question in this format.

    The good news for Trump is the surge in positive views of the economy. Overwhelmingly, the promise that Trump made that Americans are most positive about is to spend huge amounts on infrastructure in this country.  Second on the list in its perceived importance is cutting income taxes.

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