In the eyes of most Granite Staters, former President Donald Trump is a criminal. But that’s not stopping a majority of Republicans from giving the former president their thumbs up.
And, echoing the findings of the NHJournal/coefficient poll released last week, Republicans in the latest Granite State Poll, a States of Opinion Project, out of the UNH Survey Center said Trump’s indictment on federal charges made it more, not less, likely they’ll support him.
Overall, the poll found 60 percent of New Hampshire adults believe Trump definitely or probably committed a crime in his handling of classified documents.
Democrats were absolutely certain Trump was guilty, and 58 percent of unaffiliated Granite Staters agreed. Among Republicans, just 21 percent were in the “definitely/probably” guilty category and another 30 percent said he was “probably not.” An unshakeable 41 percent of Republicans said Trump was completely innocent.
No matter. Only nine percent of Republicans in the poll said Trump’s indictment on charges related to his handling of classified documents would make them less likely to vote for him. Some 48 percent said the charges made them more likely to back the former president.
On the other hand, 40 percent of self-described moderates said they are now less likely to vote for the former president in the future.
Public opinion has moved significantly regarding whether Granite Staters think Trump will be convicted. Just over half (52 percent) believed it was very or somewhat likely that Trump would be convicted for his handling of classified documents, up from only 36 percent in April. Even 40 percent of Republicans thought Trump would be convicted, a significant jump from the 13 percent who thought so in April.
Despite continued support among Republicans, some of those figures don’t bode well for Trump in the general election. “That’s the case for the November election,” said Andy Smith, director of the UNH Survey Center, when asked whether these numbers signal trouble ahead for Trump in New Hampshire, a state he lost by 7.4 points in 2020.
With majorities believing he committed a crime and would likely be convicted – plus 4 in 10 New Hampshire moderates saying they were now less likely to vote for him – Trump could be “a big drag on the party in the November election,” according to Smith.
“The difficulty is with Republicans,” Smith said. “Trump still commands the support of a great majority of Republican voters.”
The poll was released just hours before Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s foreign policy speech at Saint Anselm College, in which the Democrat denounced U.S. involvement in foreign wars and urged President Joe Biden to negotiate with Russia’s Vladimir Putin.
“FDR met with Stalin. JFK met with Khrushchev. Nixon met with Brezhnev. Reagan met with Gorbachev,” Kennedy said. “Can’t Biden meet with Putin?”
In the UNH survey, a plurality (45 percent) of New Hampshire adults said U.S. aid to Ukraine currently is the right amount, a percentage that has held steady over the last several months.
However, a new high (23 percent) of Granite Staters said the U.S. shouldn’t be aiding Ukraine at all. In fact, the 33 percent who think the U.S. is doing too much to aid Ukraine or shouldn’t be helping Ukraine at all is significantly higher than the 7 percent who thought the U.S. was doing too much in April 2022.
Likewise, the 12 percent who believe the U.S. is doing too little to aid Ukraine marks a great decline from the 46 percent who thought so in April 2022 in what has clearly been a softening in support for Ukraine in the minds of New Hampshire adults.
The poll also asked about the use of race and ethnicity in higher education. With the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in a pair of cases about affirmative action in the college admissions process imminent, the majority (54 percent) of New Hampshire adults somewhat or strongly disapprove of considering race and ethnicity in college admissions decisions.
While 64 percent of New Hampshire Democrats generally approve of using race and ethnicity in college admissions, supermajorities of independents (66 percent) and Republicans (88 percent) disapprove of race-based admissions policies.