Inauguration More About Politics Than Patriotism

Most Americans embraced Barack Obama’s historic inauguration eight years ago as a celebration by all Americans, but a majority this year has returned to the view that the ceremony is a more partisan affair. Fifty-five percent now say Donald Trump’s inauguration this week is more of a political celebration by his supporters than “a celebration by all Americans of democracy in action.” CONT.

Jim Norman, Gallup

The End of the Beginning

Tomorrow marks the start of the brave new world of President Donald J. Trump. But today marks the end of the Obama-to-Trump transition. They, and we, survived the interregnum, more or less — and it was not guaranteed and is worth celebrating. CONT.

Larry J. Sabato, Sabato’s Crystal Ball

How Will Obama Be Graded By History?

After eight years in office, Barack Obama will end his presidency on Friday. There has already been much talk of his accomplishments, failures and legacy, but it will take years or even decades for historians, political scientists, journalists and the American people to confidently assess his place among other American presidents.

In the meantime (sorry, we’re impatient), what can we say about how history will judge Obama? Where will future historians rank him compared to his predecessors? CONT.

Andrew R. Lewis (U. of Cincinnati) & Paul A. Djupe (Denison U.), FiveThirtyEight

CA-34: Sanders Movement Lives On, Voters Reject Political Establishment

A new LD poll shows voters in California’s 34th congressional district give high marks to Senator Bernie Sanders, and many of the themes of his political movement, as more than a dozen candidates jockey for position to replace outgoing Congressman Xavier Becerra. Becerra was named Attorney General of California to fill the vacancy of Kamala Harris who was elected to the U.S. Senate in November. CONT.

Latino Decisions

Eight in 10 Americans think U.S. will pay for the wall on southern border

Donald Trump campaigned on keeping jobs in the U.S. and six in ten Americans expect he will keep a significant number of U.S. jobs from moving overseas. Just under half think he will be able to get big money out of politics. About a third think he will build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border (something six in ten Americans oppose), or defeat ISIS.

Overall, just 39 percent expect Mr. Trump will keep most of the promises he made during the presidential campaign, while over half the public thinks he will not keep those promises. CONT.

CBS News

Divided States of America: How ‘Obamacare’ Became a Symbol of America’s Divide

As President Barack Obama prepares to leave office and Donald Trump’s inauguration approaches, the Republican-led Congress is debating how to dismantle one of Obama’s signature efforts: The Affordable Care Act.

Enacted in 2010, and initially dubbed “Obamacare” by critics, the law has expanded health insurance for millions. But as FRONTLINE’s new, two-night documentary, Divided States of America, shows, its passage also contributed to years of political polarization, the surge of the Tea Party movement, and a wave of anti-establishment sentiment that helped fuel Trump’s road to victory. CONT.

Frontline

Donald Trump Issue Agenda: Year One’s Potential Successes

As Donald Trump is set to become the 45th President of the United States, a divided American public shows little signs of a partisan cease fire. However, Americans are united on a number of issues that they want to see Donald Trump address in the coming year.

A recent survey for NBC News/The Wall Street Journal conducted January 12-15, 2017, tested a litany of important issues facing the country, asking voters whether or not each issue should be addressed by the incoming President as an absolute priority, if it could be delayed until next year, or if the issue should not be pursued at all. CONT.

Dave Wilson, Public Opinion Strategies

Trump, Clinton Voters Divided in Their Main Source for Election News

In the coming days, Americans will follow a single event across a variety of media channels: the inauguration of Donald Trump as the 45th president of the United States. If the public’s media habits during the campaign are any indicator, it is likely that Trump and Hillary Clinton voters will be learning about the inauguration from very different media outlets.

According to a new Pew Research Center survey, Americans who say they voted for Trump in the general election relied heavily on Fox News as their main source of election news leading up to the 2016 election, whereas Clinton voters named an array of different sources, with no one source named by more than one-in-five of her supporters. CONT.

Pew

Public Sees Wealthy People, Corporations Gaining Influence in Trump Era

As President-elect Donald Trump prepares to take office, the public has starkly different expectations about which groups in society will gain influence – and those that will lose influence – under his administration.

Nearly two-thirds of Americans (64%) say wealthy people will gain influence in Washington when Trump takes office. CONT.

Pew

Americans’ Satisfaction Steady or Up, Except on Race Matters

Americans’ satisfaction with both race relations and the situation for blacks and other racial minorities in the U.S. edged down from last year, the only two areas of the 28 Gallup measured to decline significantly over this period. …

The biggest positive changes over the past year were increases in Americans’ satisfaction with the state of the nation’s economy, up 12 percentage points, and the level of immigration into this country, up 11 points. CONT.

Frank Newport, Gallup