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Among more than 100 publicly released polls dating to October 2021, none shows Vice President Kamala Harris with approval ratings that outweigh disapproval ratings.
FiveThirtyEight, a polling aggregation website, shows the average for Harris’ recent approval polls have hovered around 12 points "underwater."
During a recent interview with Vice President Kamala Harris, ABC News’ Linsey Davis asked Harris about how Americans view her.
In the July 31 interview, Davis said, "There are reports that say that you have the lowest approval rating of any vice president. I'm curious, how much role, if any, (do) you feel race and gender play in that?"
Harris did not answer the question, but responded instead, "There are polls that also say I have great approval ratings."
However, public polling results do not support her assertion.
FiveThirtyEight.com, a commonly cited repository of political polls, lists all the public polls that asked respondents whether they approved or disapproved of Harris as vice president.
At the time the ABC News interview aired, FiveThirtyEight’s average was 39.7% approving of Harris’ performance and 52.3% disapproving, for a net of 12.6 percentage points "underwater."
Meanwhile, the most recent poll in which more people approved than disapproved of Harris’ performance was from October 2021 and was more than 100 polls ago. That poll, conducted by Saint. Leo University, found Harris above water by 2 percentage points, which was within the poll’s 3-point margin of error.
The last time Harris’ FiveThirtyEight polling average was above water came that same month, October 2021. Since February 2022, Harris’s FiveThirtyEight average has never been less than percentage points underwater.
Looking only at the most recent polls sponsored by media outlets or universities also shows more disapproval than approval of Harris:
July: SSRS for CNN, 42% approval, 57% disapproval (15 points underwater)
July: Monmouth University, 40% approval, 53% disapproval (13 points underwater)
June: Beacon/Shaw for Fox News, 41% approval, 56% disapproval (15 points underwater)
May-June: YouGov for the University of Massachusetts, 39% approval, 51% disapproval (12 points underwater)
When we asked the White House for evidence to support Harris’ statement, a spokesperson told us Davis asked an open-ended question, and that some polls — albeit ones conducted early in Harris’ tenure — showed the vice president with positive approval ratings.
The spokesperson added that polls have found that certain subgroups of voters register strong approval of Harris, such as 72% of Black voters in the July SSRS/CNN poll. She was also 18 points above water among voters of color in the July Monmouth University poll and 12 points above water with young voters in a July poll by Leger, a Canadian pollster.
However, Harris didn’t specify any of these subgroups in her answer.
Harris said, "There are polls that also say I have great approval ratings."
The most recent poll in which more people approved than disapproved of Harris’ performance was more than 100 publicly released polls ago, in October 2021. Her FiveThirtyEight average is hovering at about 12 points underwater, and hasn’t been less than 9 points underwater during the past 18 months.
We rate the statement False.
Kamala Harris, interview with ABC News, July 31, 2023
FiveThirtyEight.com, "Do Americans approve or disapprove of Kamala Harris? An updating average, accounting for each poll's recency, sample size, methodology and house effects," accessed Aug. 8, 2023
Newsweek, "Kamala Harris Hails 'Great Approval Ratings' Polls: Fact Check," Aug. 3, 2023
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