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Happy Thursday and welcome to Rhode Map, your daily guide to everything happening in the Ocean State. I’m Dan McGowan and since football season starts tonight, I’m predicting Bills over Bucs in the Super Bowl. Follow me on Twitter @DanMcGowan or send tips to Dan.McGowan@globe.com.
ICYMI: Rhode Island was up to 22,676 confirmed coronavirus cases on Wednesday, after adding 54 new cases. The most recent test-positive rate was 1 percent. The state announced three more deaths, bringing the total to 1,062. There were 82 people in the hospital, four in intensive care, and three were on ventilators.
It’s no secret that President Trump’s approval rating for his handling of the coronavirus has been in the tank for months, and Bob Woodward’s new book probably isn’t going to help.
But if you’re looking for the state that has the least favorable approval rating for Trump, look no further than Rhode Island.
A new poll out this week from the COVID-19 Consortium for Understanding the Public’s Policy Preferences Across States shows just 21 percent of Rhode Island residents approve or strongly approve of Trump’s leadership during the pandemic. His national approval rating was 34 percent.
Massachusetts residents had the second-lowest approval rating for the president, at 24 percent. Trump’s handling of the pandemic is most popular in Idaho, where he had an approval rating of 49 percent.
The consortium includes researchers from Harvard, Northeastern, Rutgers, and Northwestern. They surveyed 21,196 individuals across the country between Aug. 7 and Aug. 26 via an online poll. In Rhode Island, the margin of error was plus or minus 7 percentage points.
The group also has been polling every state on the popularity of their governor throughout the pandemic, and Gina Raimondo dipped to 60 percent, down from 71 percent in late July.
Raimondo peaked at 74 percent in late April, according to the consortium.
The governors of Vermont (76 percent), Maryland (71 percent), Massachusetts (68 percent), Connecticut (65 percent), Michigan (64 percent), New Hampshire (63 percent), and New York (61 percent) all had higher approval ratings than Raimondo.
THE GLOBE IN RHODE ISLAND
⚓ We should learn the final results of Tuesday’s primary later today, but Ed Fitzpatrick reports that progressives are already considering mounting a serious challenge to Senate President Dominick Ruggerio and his leadership team in January.
⚓ With football season beginning tonight, this might be the most important thing you’ll read all day: An essential guide to chicken wings in Rhode Island.
⚓ Lifespan and Care New England are moving forward with a merger that could reshape health care in Rhode Island, but officials at both organizations say there are still a lot of unanswered questions.
⚓ Amanda Milkovits reports that Central Falls and Providence have now fallen under the 100 coronavirus cases per 100,000 residents threshold, but state leaders still aren’t ready to give schools in those districts the green light to reopen with full in-person learning.
MORE ON BOSTONGLOBE.COM
⚓ Health: Experts say getting a flu shot is more vital than ever if we want to avoid a “twindemic.”
⚓ Opinion: The Globe’s editorial board offers a scathing take on President Trump, suggesting that the country needs an inquiry to hold the president and his administration accountable for negligence that led to thousands of deaths.
⚓ Colleges: Looks like colleges all over the region are following Providence College’s lead by cracking down on students who disregard coronavirus regulations.
⚓ Sports: The Celtics wasted an opportunity to get back to the Eastern Conference finals last night, so they’re going to a game seven.
WHAT’S ON TAP TODAY
Each day, Rhode Map offers a cheat sheet breaking down what’s happening in Rhode Island. Have an idea? E-mail us at RInews@globe.com.
⚓ BIRTHDAYS: Rhode Map readers, if you want a friend or family member to be recognized on Friday, send me an e-mail with their first and last name, and their age.
⚓ State officials are teasing a big jobs announcement for Rhode Island later this afternoon.
⚓ Governor Raimondo is holding her weekly Facebook Live conversation on education at 3 p.m.
⚓ Mail ballot results are expected to be in today.
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