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Poll: Republicans who think Trump is untruthful still approve of him

A majority of Americans overall — 61 percent — think Trump regularly has trouble telling the truth, according to a new NBC News/SurveyMonkey poll.
by Andrew Arenge, John Lapinski and Ashley Tallevi /
Image: Donald Trump
Trump speaks during a ceremony to present the Commander-in-Chief's Trophy to the U.S. Military Academy football team at the White House on May 1, 2018.Evan Vucci / AP

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Most Republicans who think President Donald Trump is loose with the truth still approve of the job he's doing as president, a new NBC News|SurveyMonkey online poll shows.

While 76 percent of Republicans believe Trump tells the truth all or most of the time, 22 percent say he tells the truth only some of the time or less. Among such Republicans, over half of them (56 percent) still approve of his work as president.

Meanwhile, an overwhelming majority of Democrats and Democratic-leaners (94 percent) and three-quarters of independents (76 percent) believe the president tells the truth only some of the time or even less frequently. A majority of Americans overall — 61 percent — think Trump regularly has trouble telling the truth.

Still, Trump's current job approval is 45 percent, according to the survey — which is tied with the highest rate of approval recorded by the NBC News|SurveyMonkey poll since he began his presidency.

Who are those Republicans?

Six in ten (61 percent) of these Americans are men. They are younger than the Republicans who think Trump is truthful, and are also more likely to prefer living in urban or suburban areas.

They are less likely than other Republicans to identify immigration as the most important issue right now, but are more in line with other Republicans by citing jobs and the economy as the issue that matters most.

Look who’s talking now

The divide among Americans over the issue of Trump’s truthfulness may be reinforced by how often they engage in political discussions with people of different political persuasions.

Nearly half of Americans (48 percent) talk about politics with someone they disagree with at least once a week. Two in 10 (21 percent) say they almost never talk politics with people they disagree with.

Americans are split on the value of having these conversations. Half of Americans (51 percent) generally find the experience to be stressful and frustrating, while almost half (45 percent) find these discussions to be interesting and informative.

Partisans are more likely to believe the experience is stressful and frustrating, while independents are more likely to find the experience interesting and informative.

Americans who view these discussions positively are more likely to engage in these types of conversations regularly. Those who find the experience interesting and informative are 13 percent more likely to engage in these conversations weekly than those who find them stressful and frustrating.

Notably, a quarter (26 percent) of those Americans who find these conversations to be stressful and frustrating almost never engage in them.

The NBC News|SurveyMonkey poll was conducted April 20-27, 2018, among a national sample of 10,163 adults. Respondents for this nonprobability survey were selected from the nearly 3 million people who take surveys on the SurveyMonkey platform each day. Results have an error estimate of plus or minus 1.2 percentage points. For full results and methodology, click here.

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