WASHINGTON (AFP) - Just 37.4 per cent of active personnel in the US military support President Donald Trump's re-election, while 43.1 per cent back his Democratic opponent Joe Biden, according to a new poll Monday (Aug 31).
The poll by the Military Times and the Syracuse University Institute for Veterans and Military Families found that half of servicemen and women have an unfavourable view of Trump, and 42 per cent strongly disapprove of him, compared to 38 per cent with a favorable view of the Republican leader.
Support for Trump fell from the previous poll in December 2019, when he had a 42 per cent favourable rating.
The poll of 1,018 people was taken before the recent Democratic and Republican party national conventions, in which the parties laid out the cases for supporting their candidate.
The poll was weighted more to career members of the military rather than younger, junior enlisted personnel, the Military Times noted, so is not a complete snapshot of what the entire US military thinks.
Trump has boasted of strong support among the military and has touted his increase in funding for the Pentagon's budget.
But that record is clouded by frequent disputes with the Pentagon's leadership, including firing popular defense secretary Jim Mattis in December 2019, and policy conflicts with the current secretary, Mark Esper, and Joint Chiefs Chair General Mark Milley.