Iowa Poll: Despite state impacts, registered Republicans approve of how Trump has handled trade with China

Source: By Donnelle Eller, Des Moines Register • Posted: Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Three-fourths of Iowa’s registered Republicans back President Donald Trump’s approach to trade with China, and half say his tariffs have done more to help than harm Iowa agribusiness, a new Des Moines Register/CNN/Mediacom Iowa Poll shows.

The poll includes 502 registered Republicans who do not plan to caucus for Democrats in 2020.

But just over half of these Republicans approve of his handling of ethanol policy, an issue that has put several farm and renewable fuels groups at odds with the administration, the poll shows.

These Republicans’ overall job approval rating of Trump in the poll is 85%.

“Ethanol is something of a weak spot for the president,” said J. Ann Selzer, president of Selzer & Co., which conducted the poll. The poll was conducted Nov. 8-13 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.4 percentage points.

Farm and renewable fuel groups have criticized Trump’s Environmental Protection Agency for granting waivers to small oil refineries, allowing them to avoid blending 4 billion gallons of ethanol and biodiesel into the nation’s fuel supply. Nearly 30 U.S. ethanol and biodiesel plants have closed either temporarily or permanently because of the waivers. Four are in Iowa.