By Lauren Victoria Burke (NNPA Newswire Contributor)
President Donald Trump tenure continues to be plagued by controversy and low approval ratings, as a former campaign aide’s strange comments about the ongoing probe into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election showed more cracks in the veneer of the White House.
CBS News reported that Sam Nunberg told the Associated Press that he was “angry over Mueller’s request to have him appear in front of a grand jury and turn over thousands of emails and other communications with other ex-officials, among them his mentor, Roger Stone.”
Early on Monday, March 5, during televised interviews Nunberg appeared defiant, suggesting that he would refuse special counsel Robert Mueller’s request to appear before a grand jury.
During an interview with MSNBC, Nunberg said that he thought that President Trump, “may have done something during the election.”
Nunberg also told CNN that he thought former Trump campaign adviser “Carter Page was colluding with the Russians.”
Later that day, Nunberg reversed course and eventually, told reporters that he would cooperate with Mueller’s request.
The bizarre Nunberg interviews came less than week after White House Communications Director Hope Hicks resigned after she testified before the House Intelligence Committee.
A White House source told CNN that, after admitting to the House Intelligence Committee that she told “white lies” in her role as White House Communications Director, a tearful Hicks informed White House communications staffers that she would resign.
In February, when the sudden resignations of two White House staffers—White House staff secretary Rob Porter and White House speechwriter David Sorensen—made headlines, polls revealed a drop in support for President Donald Trump within one of his most loyal voting blocs: White women.
Donald Trump’s support among White women, a group that supported him over former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton by over nine percent in 2016, has now dropped by 10 percent. A CNN poll released in February showed Trump losing White women to former Vice President Joe Biden by an incredible 23 points. That poll revealed signs of trouble for Trump with White women voters even before the two Trump staffers who had allegedly assaulted their wives resigned.
On February 9, domestic abuse allegations involving Porter and Sorensen surfaced. Porter’s ex-wife, Jennie Willoughby, appeared on CNN with Anderson Cooper and the Today Show on NBC to speak about her past relationship with Porter and a photograph that appeared in the media of Porter’s first wife, Colbie Holderness, with a black eye. The power of the Willoughby interviews along with the pictures of Holderness is likely to drive Trump’s polling numbers down even further.
A recent Gallup poll showed that support for Trump among blue-collar White women declined a stunning 18 percent in Ohio and 19 percent in Wisconsin and Minnesota. The Gallup poll results were assembled shortly before the stories on White House staffers Porter and Sorensen became public.
In December 2017, Trump’s job-approval rating hit its lowest point of the year in a Monmouth University poll. Over half of those surveyed by Monmouth (56 percent) disapproved of Trump’s job performance.
Women and independent voters led the slide in those poll numbers. Nearly 70 percent of women surveyed said they disapproved of the president’s job performance.
Lauren Victoria Burke is a congressional correspondent for the NNPA Newswire. Lauren also works independently as a political analyst and communications strategist. You can reach Lauren by email at LBurke007@gmail.com and on Twitter at @LVBurke.
Freddie Allen contributed reporting for this story.