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Among the decided voters Biden leads Trump 50-37 in an NBC/WSJ Survey.


Q10A Even though you are not supporting Donald Trump now, what are the chances that you might support Trump in  this year's presidential election--Is there a fair chance that you might support him, a small chance, just a very slight chance, or no chance at all you might support him? 

  • Fair chance you might support ................... 1 
  • Small chance ................................................... 3 
  • Very slight chance .......................................... 6 
  • No chance at all you might support........... 50 
  • Not sure ............................................................ 0
  • Currently supporting Trump......................... 40 


Q10B Even though you are not supporting Joe Biden now, what are the chances that you might support Biden in this year's presidential election--Is there a fair chance that you might support him, a small chance, just a very slight chance, or no chance at all you might support him? 

  • Fair chance you might support ..................... 2 
  • Small chance ..................................................... 3 
  • Very slight chance ............................................ 6 
  • No chance at all you might support............. 37 
  • Not sure ............................................................. 1 
  • Currently supporting Biden .......................... 51

My Caveats 

  1. The above results are from registered voters only. A poll of likely voters might have produced different results.
  2. This is just one poll but it fits numerous other polls that show dwindling support for Trump dues to Covid handling and racial issues. 
  3. This is a national poll. The election will be won or lost in the battleground states.

There are still 3 months left, but only three months left. It is no longer "early".

Monmouth University Poll

A Monmouth University Poll taken earlier this month made the same conclusion: More Voters Rule Out Trump Than Biden.

Half of the nation’s electorate says they have ruled out voting for Donald Trump in November, while 4 in 10 say the same about Joe Biden.

Slightly more voters say they are certain about their support for Biden (40%) than say the same about Trump (34%). Fully half (50%), though, say they are not at all likely to support the incumbent while 39% say the same about the challenger.

In addition to Biden’s current firm support, another 3% say they are very likely to vote for him and 9% are somewhat likely, while 6% are not too likely.

In addition to Trump’s current firm support, another 2% say they are very likely to vote for him and 6% are somewhat likely, while 6% are not too likely.

Trump Needs Nearly All of the Undecideds to Break His Way

Assuming the above polls are in the ballpark (and I strongly suggest they are) Trump needs all, nearly all, or perhaps even "more than all", of the undecided voters to break his way.

Caveat #3 is the most important. These were national polls. A similar poll of the battleground states would be more convincing.

Recent Battleground State Polls

Recent Battleground State Polls 2020-07-25

I compiled the above list from FiveThirtyEight.

Astute readers who double-check will note that I left off a slew of polls by "Spry Strategies". Those polls were mostly but not entirely favorable to Trump. 

I did not include those polls because they were all marked with an *.

Polls marked with an asterisk are partisan polls. Partisanship is determined by who sponsors the poll, rather than who conducts it. Polls are considered partisan if they’re conducted on behalf of a candidate, party, campaign committee, or PAC, super PAC, 501(c)(4), 501(c)(5) or 501(c)(6) organization that conducts a large majority of its political activity on behalf of one political party.

Polls sponsored by a candidate or PAC are typically biased by weight, by leading questions, or by other non-random means. 

Polling Question of the Day

Why rate Rate Rasmussen as C+ instead of F or ignoring them as biased?

Nate Silver never answers any of my questions nor any questions from anyone else that I have seen.

In the national surveys, at least, Silver takes into consideration the pollster bias and makes adjustments. They did not do so for Spry Strategies. 

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This is Not 2016

A key difference from four years ago is that fewer voters have a negative opinion of the Democratic nominee. Biden’s rating stands at 44% favorable and 44% unfavorable. It was 42%–49% in early June. Hillary Clinton’s rating in July 2016 was 34% favorable and 52% unfavorable. Trump currently has a negative 38% favorable and 55% unfavorable opinion. It was 38%–57% in early June. As a candidate four years ago, he held a 31% favorable and 53% unfavorable rating.

Overall, 21% of all registered voters do not have a favorable opinion of either party’s nominee. Trump did well with this “double negative” group in 2016. The National Election Pool exit poll showed him ultimately winning their vote after Clinton held a small edge throughout the campaign. But he is getting swamped among these voters this time around. Biden leads by 55% to 21% among this group.

“Four years ago, Clinton was the insider candidate who approximated an incumbent in many voters’ minds. There is no mistaking who wears that mantle this year. Trump’s problem is that voters who aren’t enamored with either candidate tend to go for change,” said Patrick Murray, director of the independent Monmouth University Polling Institute.

The above snip is from Monmouth University.

I have commented many times "This is not 2016." I said so way back in December for the same reasons.

Trump Complain About Poll Samples


Weighted vs Unweighted Polls

People who complain about rigged polls by independent pollsters are ignorant of the process.

There is frequent oversampling or undersampling by political party, race, age group, gender, etc.

In fact, it is impossible to not have over or undersampling in a poll. People bitch about this but it is irrelevant.

The pollsters take unweighted responses then weight them so they are statistically valid.

Polls Wrong?

People point to 2016 as an example of polls being wrong.

Once again, this is mostly silliness. The polls did indeed get the outcome wrong but the polls were within the margin of error. 

Comey Factor

Trump had a huge surge at the last moment due to a blockbuster announcement by FBI director James Comey.

FiveThirtyEight comments The Comey Letter Probably Cost Clinton The Election , So why won’t the media admit as much?

Hillary Clinton would probably be president if FBI Director James Comey had not sent a letter to Congress on Oct. 28. The letter, which said the FBI had “learned of the existence of emails that appear to be pertinent to the investigation” into the private email server that Clinton used as secretary of state, upended the news cycle and soon halved Clinton’s lead in the polls, imperiling her position in the Electoral College.

The letter isn’t the only reason that Clinton lost. It does not excuse every decision the Clinton campaign made. Other factors may have played a larger role in her defeat, and it’s up to Democrats to examine those as they choose their strategy for 2018 and 2020.

But the effect of those factors — say, Clinton’s decision to give paid speeches to investment banks, or her messaging on pocket-book issues, or the role that her gender played in the campaign — is hard to measure. The impact of Comey’s letter is comparatively easy to quantify, by contrast. At a maximum, it might have shifted the race by 3 or 4 percentage points toward Donald Trump, swinging Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Florida to him, perhaps along with North Carolina and Arizona. At a minimum, its impact might have been only a percentage point or so. Still, because Clinton lost Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin by less than 1 point, the letter was probably enough to change the outcome of the Electoral College.

Trump won Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin by less than 1 percentage point. 

Trump Fires Campaign Manager

Not Wrong Then, Not Wrong Now

Polls are snapshots of current sentiment with margins of error. 

The polls were not wrong in 2016 and they are likely not wrong now. Even if they are wrong now, it takes tremendous TDS Type II (Trump is never wrong) to believe all the polls are wrong, and by a big enough margin to put Trump in the lead.

In 2016, the Comey effect was not reflected in the polls at the state level but it swung the election.

If you don't believe the polls then why panic?

Someone in the Trump administration must believe the polls. If not, why did Trump replace his campaign manager?