Almost half of Americans are concerned about President Donald Trump‘s mental stability, according to a poll released Sunday.
Respondents in the Washington Post/ABC News poll were asked to answer the question, “Do you think Trump is mentally stable?” — 48 per cent said he is, while 47 per cent said he is not.
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Women were more likely to have doubts about his mental health at 55 per cent. And 75 per cent of Democrats also believe that the president is not mentally stable. Independents were more likely to back Trump’s mental health, with less than half (46 per cent) saying he is not stable.
Only 14 per cent of Republicans thought he was mentally unstable.
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Members of Trump’s own party, white Evangelicals, and non-college-educated white men were most likely to believe he’s mentally capable for the top job.
The poll also asked respondents whether they believe Trump is a genius — the president claimed to be in a tweet earlier this month, while responding to concerns about his mental health.
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“I think that would qualify as not smart, but genius….and a very stable genius at that!” he wrote on Jan. 6.
Americans overwhelmingly disagreed with the president, with 21 per cent backing his statement, and 73 per cent saying he is not a genius.
Trump’s mental health has been under increased scrutiny since Michael Wolff’s book, Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House, hit shelves earlier this month.
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The tell-all book’s claims — that many who work with the president question his mental stability and fitness for office — have been refuted by U.S officials in recent weeks.
CIA Director Mike Pompeo recently came forward to say Trump is “completely fit” to lead the country.
Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, also said she visits the White House once a week, and “no one questions the stability of the president.”
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While Trump’s physical health was said to be in “excellent” condition after a medical test, his mental stability was not discussed by doctors. Presidents’ mental health reports are not typically discussed in public.
However, dozens of health professionals in the U.S. have signed a letter urging the White House’s chief physician to conduct mental health checks on the president.
In an open letter sent Jan. 11, they cite concerns such as his slurred speech, difficulty completing thoughts, decreased fine motor coordination, and more.
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There has been disagreement whether the president’s mental health is a public matter. Some have said it affects his ability to run the country, and others argue the concerns are nothing more than speculation.
“I think Americans would like him to take a mental health exam,” David Taras, a political analyst at Calgary’s Mount Royal University, recently told Global News.
But he added that there may not be any consequences, even if concerns are raised in the results.
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Taras said impeachment is not going to get the support of Republican lawmakers.
The only other option is the 25th Amendment, which allows for the vice president with the support of the majority of the Cabinet, to deem the president unfit for office. It’s a long-shot, but if this happens Vice President Mike Pence would become the leader.
The analyst indicated the results would have to be very concerning for Pence to take such an action.
The ABC News/Washington Post poll was conducted by Langer Research Associates over telephone between Jan. 15-18, 2017 in English and Spanish. It was completed by 1,005 adults. It is considered accurate plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.
— With files from The Associated Press