New approval ratings for the month of June show President Trump dipping below 40 percent for the first time since 2017, as pressures of the pandemic, economy and protests continue to mount. With the election just five months away, June approval ratings have been key indicators for whether past presidents get reelected or are kicked out after one term.
In historical data of approval ratings in June for past presidents, presidents with approval ratings above 45 percent have gone on to be reelected to a second term in November. These include recent presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush, who had respective approval ratings of 46 percent and 49 percent at the tail end of their first term. The three modern presidents that weren’t reelected to a second term all had June approval ratings at 45 percent or below, with George H.W. Bush and Jimmy Carter at 35 percent and 32 percent, respectively.
Approval ratings at the time of reelection during each president’s first term may be a better indicator for how many past presidents make up ground on their low approval. Only George W. Bush had an approval rating above 40 percent but below 50 percent at the time of his reelection, while all others who weren’t reelected fell below 40 percent by November. President Trump’s approval ratings are looking worse than Bush’s in 2004, who ended up winning the popular vote by 2 percent and the electoral college by 35 votes.