None of this means that I’ve abandoned my “don’t freak out about polls before Labor Day” view of the world, but there are some eye-opening polls out today, both national and state numbers, that show human wrecking ball Donald Trump in free fall to a jaw dropping degree. If nothing else, they might help cheer up your early August, post-convention, pre-Labor Day blues. So here you go – you’re welcome.
A difficult week for Donald Trump has gotten tougher with the release of several new polls in swing states showing him trailing Hillary Clinton by wide margins. The surveys come hot on the heels of polls from CNN/ORC and Fox News showing that Clinton’s got a wide national lead (plus-9 in CNN’s, and plus-10 in Fox’s). And the bad numbers have been coupled with day after day of negative press for Trump, including his poorly received fight with the family of a soldier killed in Iraq, his declaration at a rally that he “always wanted a Purple Heart” and reports that his campaign staff is becoming demoralized.
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In New Hampshire, a survey from WBUR shows Hillary Clinton leading Trump by 17 points. In Pennsylvania, a Franklin & Marshall College poll has Clinton up 11 among likely voters. In Michigan, a Detroit News poll shows Clinton up 6 points in a head-to-head match-up.
Update: At noon, Suffolk University released a new Florida poll. There, Clinton leads by 6 points. Details from that survey are at the bottom of this article.
The New Hampshire and Pennsylvania surveys break out how various demographics feel about the candidates. As usual, women are far more supportive of Clinton than Trump — plus-31 in New Hampshire and Pennsylvania and plus-21 in Michigan — but Clinton’s running closer to Trump among men than in past polls. In New Hampshire, a state she lost badly in the primary and Trump won easily, Clinton’s actually leading with men.
Part of Trump’s problem is that Republicans aren’t solidly on-board. Clinton gets 89 percent of Democrats in New Hampshire and 78 percent in Pennsylvania. Trump gets two-thirds of Republicans in the Granite State and only slightly more in Pennsylvania — and this is in a head-to-head match-up. More remarkably, Clinton’s net favorability in each state — the percentage of those saying they view her positively minus those who view her negatively — is about even. Trump’s is minus-30.
This week — an epically bad one for Trump — has seen a number of prominent Republicans bail on his candidacy. If Trump manages to reel Republicans back in, to get them to back him at the rates they backed Mitt Romney in 2012 or John McCain in 2008, these numbers would improve a great deal. If the party continues to gingerly step away, though, that would likely become a lot harder.
The worst news in these polls is in Pennsylvania. The state is essential to Trump’s candidacy, both because he has argued that working class white voters in the Rust Belt will flock to his candidacy and because he needs to pick up some states Romney lost four years ago to beat Clinton, and Pennsylvania’s been shifting more Republican. In an interview with a local news program in Florida on Tuesday, Trump said that, “in Pennsylvania, we’re doing fantastically.” He isn’t.
This idea that eventually, Republicans who have fled from Trump are maybe just going to wander back in? Probably not going to happen. And even if they do, an 11 point margin is not going to be easily made up.
So to summarize:
Nationally, Clinton leads by 9-10 points. In key swing states, she leads by 6 (Florida), 11 (Pennsylvania), and 17 (New Hampshire, a state where Trump romped and Clinton got killed in the primaries. With numbers like that, and an out of control and unmanageable candidate, I’d be depressed and looking for the exits too if I was a Republican. Which, thank the gods, I’m not.
Happy Thursday, y’all. ????