A New Poll Reveals How Americans Really Feel About Their Money with Trump in the White House

Being President of the United States comes with a lot of responsibility, including having the financial well-being of millions of Americans in your hands. Donald Trump has frugal money habits he relies on, but his tax plan is supposed to be a financial windfall for the everyday American. Are your money and personal finances better or worse with Trump in the White House? A recent Gallup poll reveals how Americans really feel.
We’ll find out how the public feels about their personal finances with Trump in the White House (page 8), but first, we’ll give you some background, including what members of each party think (pages 4 and 5).

President Trump promised sweeping tax changes

Donald Trump speaks at a rally.
The people wanted tax changes, and Trump did his best to deliver. | Joe Raedle/Getty Images
  • Trump is actually doing a good job keeping his campaign promises.

Trump talked the talk on the campaign trail, and he’s actually doing a good job keeping his campaign promises. Some promises, like building the border wall and turning the trade deficit into a surplus, haven’t happened yet, but a big one has — tax reform. Trump vowed to totally rework the tax code, and he did just that in December of 2017.
Next: Trump initiatives are helping Americans, especially the super wealthy.

The richest people in the U.S. love the new tax plan

Donald Trump and family
Trump’s family is certainly benefitting from his policies. | Christopher Gregory/Getty Images
  • The tax changes are great for Trump and his inner circle.

A lot of Trump’s initiatives are helping middle-class Americans, but we don’t know how the public feels about the tax plan since the changes are still rolling out. However, we’re guessing at least 15 people who stand to cash in big and the rich Trump kids are loving the new tax plan.
Next: Potential tax increases might change how people feel about their money situations.

Are the changes really helping?

supervisor checks the interior of a new warehouse
Those in the working class may not get much of a tax break. | iStock.com/killerbayer
  • Three months in, the answer is no.

There’s a lot to loathe in Trump’s tax plan. Corporate tax cuts, no more itemized deductions, and slashing the mortgage interest rate deduction are three changes almost everyone hates. Three months in, the tax changes haven’t reached most working people, so it’s too soon to know how people feel about it.
In the long run, we’re guessing a lot of people won’t be fans since people who work the most common jobs might see tax increases over time.
Next: Blue state blues

What do Democrats think?

US Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton addresses a primary night rally in Columbia, South Carolina
The Democrats may not be too happy with the policies in the future. | Nicholas Kamm/AFP/Getty Images
  • The present is fine, but the future is iffy.

The recent Gallup poll reveals that Democrats’ opinions of their personal finances don’t swing too wildly no matter who is in the Oval Office. In early 2018, Democrats feel pretty good about where their personal finances stand as 49% say they are in excellent or good shape.
However, Democrats are a little less confident about the future.

  • In early 2018, just 8% of Democrats have a positive outlook and believe their personal finances are getting better as they look to the future. In early 2017, 12% had a positive outlook.
  • The 8% mark is lowest number for Democrats since 2009, during the Great Recession.

Next: Red state raves

Republicans finally feel like they’re on solid ground

US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a rally May 5, 2016 in Charleston, West Virginia
Republican voters are extremely hopeful. | Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty Images
  • Today is great and so is the future, say Republican voters.

The Gallup poll reveals that Republicans are absolutely loving their personal financial situations these days.

  • A little more than a year into the Trump presidency, 67% of Republicans say their financial situations are in good shape.
  • The last time the number was that high, 71% of Republicans believed they were in good shape in 2007 before the Great Recession.

Amazingly, Republicans have a very rosy view of the future, too.

  • Seventy percent believe their personal finances are improving while just 15% say they are getting worse. So, all told, 55% of Republicans feel their money situations will be better off in the future than they are today.

Next: Rating personal finances in three eras.

The George W. Bush years: 2002 to 2008

US President George W. Bush, holding pet dog Barney, waves to the crowds before leaving the White House
The public felt really good during the Bush era. | Manny Ceneta/AFP/Getty Images
  • People felt good about their money situations and the future.

During the peak George W. Bush years, Americans had strong positive feelings about their money situations. Though only 9% said their personal finances were in excellent condition, another 42% said they were in good shape.
During the same time, 48% of people believed their personal finances were getting better.
Next: The years when people worried most about their money.

The Barack Obama years: 2009 to 2016

Former President Barack Obama points out features of the proposed Obama Presidential Center, which is scheduled to be built in nearby Jackson Park, during a gathering at the South Shore Cultural Center on May 3, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois.
The Obama era was incredibly controversial. | Scott Olson/Getty Images
  • The Great Recession had a big impact on how people thought about money.

After the Great Recession, Americans didn’t have much confidence in their present or future financial situations.

  • Just 7% of people responding to Gallup at the time reported their money situations were excellent.
  • Meanwhile, 55% said their personal finances were fair or poor.

At the same time, just 44% said their personal finances were getting better, compared to 39% responding that things were getting worse.
Next: The best yet, and the best is yet to come.

Donald Trump’s presidency: 2017 to 2018

US President Donald Trump walks to Marine
Things are looking strong for Trump so far. | Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images
  • Things are great now, and the future looks good, too.

People responding to Gallup’s poll love their current finances and the future of their money, too.

  • Thirteen percent report their finances are in excellent shape (compared to 9% during George W. Bush’s years and 7% during Barack Obama’s tenure).
  • Another 41% say their finances are looking good in 2018.
  • The combined 54% who report excellent and good finances is the highest Gallup has ever seen.

Americans are planning for bright financial futures with Trump in the White House.

  • A strong majority, 55%, report their finances are getting better under Trump.
  • Just 28% stay things are getting worse.
  • The 27% difference between the better and worse groups is the largest Gallup has ever reported.

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