Republicans stay loyal to Trump despite concerns about his taxes: Reuters poll

U.S. President Donald Trump gestures as he arrives for his first 2020 election debate with Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport in Cleveland, Ohio, U.S., September 29, 2020. (REUTERS/Carlos Barria)

A sizable minority of Republicans say U.S. President Donald Trump has not paid his fair share of taxes and worry that his family business has influenced his decisions in office, yet most are still voting to give him a second term, according to Reuters/Ipsos polling released on Tuesday.

The national online poll, conducted on Monday and Tuesday, followed a New York Times investigation that found Trump, a self-described billionaire, is deeply in debt and has regularly paid little to nothing in federal income taxes over much of the past two decades.

The poll found that three in 10 Republicans were concerned that Trump’s personal finances have influenced his decisions as president, and two out of 10 Republicans said they do not think Trump has paid his “fair share” of income taxes.

But the revelations about Trump’s personal taxes do not appear to have weakened his standing overall among his party’s rank-and-file. Only about three in 10 Republicans said they believed the Times report, and seven in 10 Republicans said they saw the president as “a successful businessman who knows how to avoid taxes.”

A separate Reuters/Ipsos poll found that 88% of registered Republicans said they were still backing him over Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden in the Nov. 3 election.

Among all likely voters, Reuters/Ipsos polling showed Biden with a 9 percentage point advantage nationally, which is unchanged from the previous week. Fifty-one percent said they backed Biden while 42% said they would vote for Trump. The remainder are undecided ahead of the Nov. 3 election.

The picture is much different outside of the Republican Party, however.

The poll on Trump’s taxes found that 51% of American adults said they believe that Trump has not been paying his “fair share” of income taxes, while 26% said that Trump has paid the appropriate amount.

And 56% of all Americans said they are “very” or “somewhat” concerned that Trump’s decisions as president were influenced by his personal interest in making money, while 33% said they were not concerned.

The responses were somewhat split along party lines. Nine out of 10 Democrats said they felt Trump was not fairly paying his share of taxes, compared with about six out of 10 Republicans who felt that Trump was paying the right amount.

Among independents, four out of 10 said Trump was not paying his fair share, while two out of 10 said that he was.

The Reuters/Ipsos poll was conducted online, in English, throughout the United States. The Sept. 28-29 poll gathered responses from 1,005 American adults, while the Sept. 25-29 poll surveyed 864 likely voters. The surveys have a credibility interval, a measure of precision, of 4 percentage points.