The Slatest

Only 1 in 4 Americans Trust Trump to Vouch for Safety of Coronavirus Vaccine

Trump wears a suit and a mask as he walks by scientific equipment.
President Donald Trump tours the Bioprocess Innovation Center at Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechnologies in Morrisville, North Carolina, on July 27. Jim Watson/Getty Images

President Donald Trump is continuing to espouse optimism about the progress of the coronavirus vaccine, but Americans don’t really trust his judgment on the issue. Only 27 percent of Americans say they have a great deal or a good amount of confidence in Trump to confirm the safety and effectiveness of a vaccine, according to an ABC News/Ipsos poll. Breaking those numbers down, only 9 percent of Americans say they have a great deal of confidence in Trump. The numbers are better for Joe Biden with 41 percent of Americans expressing confidence on his judgment on a vaccine.

The low numbers for Biden and Trump on the vaccine should not be interpreted to mean Americans don’t trust anyone tied to the government on the issue. Sixty-three percent say they have a great or good deal of confidence on Anthony Fauci’s word on a vaccine. A similar percentage of Americans—61 percent—also say they have confidence in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

As a vaccine increasingly becomes political fodder, it seems the rate of Americans who say they are likely to get it when it is available appears to be on the decline. The poll found a 10-point decline—from 74 percent in May to 64 percent now—among those who said they were very or somewhat likely to get the vaccine. That drop is mostly due to Republicans, as 75 percent said in May they were likely to get the vaccine and that number has now dropped to 50 percent. The number is significantly higher among Democrats with 80 percent saying they were likely to get a vaccine. There is also a strong correlation with education level as those with college degrees are more likely to say they would be vaccinated.