8/15: Clinton Strong in Colorado, North Carolina, and Virginia… Maintains Advantage in Florida

In the race for the White House, Democrats Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine are ahead of Republicans Donald Trump and Mike Pence in the battleground states of Colorado, Florida, North Carolina, and Virginia.

Clinton has made her largest gains in Colorado where Clinton, 46%, leads Trump, 32%, by 14 points among registered voters statewide.  This is up from the 8 point lead Clinton, 43%, had over Trump, 35%, in the July NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll released prior to the Republican and Democratic conventions.  Looking at the four-way contest including Libertarian Gary Johnson and Green Party candidate Jill Stein, Clinton is still well-positioned to take Colorado’s 9 electoral votes.  Clinton has the support of 41% of voters compared with 29% for Trump, 15% for Johnson, and 6% for Stein.  Last month, Clinton, 39%, had a 6 point advantage over Trump, 33%, in the four-way contest.  The support for Johnson and Stein is little changed from that time when Johnson garnered 13%, and Stein had 4%.

With 29 electoral votes at stake in Florida, Clinton has the support of 44% of registered voters to 39% for Trump.  Previously, Clinton, 44%, had a 7 point lead over Trump, 37%, in the Sunshine State.  In the four-way race, Clinton, 41%, maintains her 5 point lead over Trump, 36%.  Johnson and Stein receive 9% and 4%, respectively.  Little has changed in the four-way contest in Florida since July.

In North Carolina where 15 electoral votes hang in the balance, Clinton, 48%, is ahead of Trump, 39%, by 9 points among the statewide electorate.  This is up slightly from 6 points last month when Clinton received 44% to 38% for Trump.  When Johnson and Stein are included, Clinton receives 45% to 36% for Trump.  Johnson has 9%, and Stein receives 2%.  The four candidates garnered similar support in the previous NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll.

In the hunt for Virginia’s 13 electoral votes, Clinton, 46%, outdistances Trump, 33%, among registered voters statewide.  Since adding Virginia Senator Tim Kaine to the ticket, Clinton has increased her lead from 9 points in last month’s survey to 13 points now.  At that time, Clinton had 44% to 35% for Trump.  In the four-way contest, Clinton, 43%, is ahead of Trump, 31%, by a similar 12 points.  12% are behind Johnson, and 5% back Stein.  In July, Clinton, 41%, had a 7 point advantage over Trump, 34%.  Johnson and Stein garnered, 10% and 2%, respectively.

“These are supposed to be battleground states, but right now, they don’t look that way,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.  “Trump still needs to unify Republicans and better position himself among traditional GOP groups in order to make the contest competitive in these must-win states.”

In each of these four states, Clinton does better among her Democratic base than Trump does among his Republican core.  With the exception of Florida, Clinton is ahead of Trump among white voters with a college education.  In states where Clinton has improved her standing, she has made inroads among men.

“Not surprisingly, a wide gender gap is present in each of these four states,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.  “Of note, however, Clinton receives the support of at least 40 percent of male voters, but Trump is not getting 40 percent among female voters.”

The favorable ratings of both Clinton and Trump remain upside down in each of these four states.  However, Clinton’s negatives are in the 50’s while Trumps are in the 60’s.  59% of Colorado residents, 52% of Florida adults, 54% of those in North Carolina, and 54% of Virginians have a negative opinion of Clinton.  Clinton’s net negative has decreased in Florida, North Carolina, and Virginia since last time.

Looking at Trump’s scores, 69% of Colorado adults, 64% of Floridians, 62% of North Carolina residents, and 66% of those in Virginia have a negative view of him.  Trump received similar unfavorable scores in last month’s NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll in these four states.

Looking at the favorable rating of Clinton’s running mate Tim Kaine, he scores well in his home state of Virginia.  A majority, 52%, have a favorable opinion of Kaine while 31% have an unfavorable view of him.  Kaine is not well known to notable proportions of residents in Colorado, Florida, and North Carolina.  Mike Pence, Trump’s running mate, is also little known to notable proportions of adults in each of these states.

In the contest for U.S. Senate in Colorado, Democrat Michael Bennet, 53%, leads Republican Darryl Glenn, 38%, by 15 points among registered voters statewide.  Previously, Bennet had the identical 15 point lead over Glenn.

In a hypothetical contest for U.S. Senate in Florida, Marco Rubio, 49%, bests Democrat Patrick Murphy, 43%, by 6 points among registered voters statewide.  Last month, Rubio and Murphy were competitive, 47% to 44%, respectively.

In North Carolina, Democrat Deborah Ross, 46%, and Republican Richard Burr, 44%, are closely matched among the state’s electorate.  Previously, Burr, 48%, led Ross, 41%, by 7 points.

In the race for North Carolina governor, Democrat Roy Cooper, 51%, leads Republican Pat McCrory, 44%, by 7 points among registered voters.  In July, Cooper, 49%, and McCrory, 45%, were competitive.

In all four states, President Barack Obama’s job approval rating is at least 50% among residents.  53% of Colorado adults, compared with 50% last month, approve of the job President Obama is doing in office.  In Florida, 51% of adults think the president is doing a good job in office.  49% of Floridians had this view previously.  The perception of the president’s job performance in North Carolina is at 50% similar to 49% last month.  52% of residents in Virginia approve of President Obama’s job performance.  Last month, 49% of Virginians had this view.

“It’s a tall order for a sitting president to pass the baton to a member of his own party,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.  “President Obama is actively trying to do just that, and his improved approval rating is boosting that effort.”

Complete August 15, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll Release of Colorado, Florida, North Carolina, and Virginia

Complete August 15, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of Colorado (Adults and Registered Voters)

Complete August 15, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of Florida (Adults and Registered Voters)

Complete August 15, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of North Carolina (Adults and Registered Voters)

Complete August 15, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of Virginia (Adults and Registered Voters)

Marist Poll Methodology for Colorado

Nature of the Sample for Colorado

Marist Poll Methodology for Florida

Nature of the Sample for Florida

Marist Poll Methodology for North Carolina

Nature of the Sample for North Carolina

Marist Poll Methodology for Virginia

Nature of the Sample for Virginia

 

8/10: Clinton, Trump Competitive in Iowa & Ohio… Clinton Leads Trump in Pennsylvania

With a total of 44 electoral votes hanging in the balance in the key battleground states of Iowa, Ohio, and Pennsylvania, Democrats Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine are closely matched with Republicans Donald Trump and Mike Pence in Iowa.  The Democrats edge the Republicans in Ohio.  Clinton and Kaine have a wider lead over Trump and Pence in Pennsylvania.

In Iowa, Clinton, 41%, edges Trump, 37%, by 4 points among registered voters in a two-way matchup.  When NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist last reported this question before the Republican and Democratic conventions, Clinton received 42% to 39% for Trump.  In a four-way contest including Libertarian Gary Johnson and Jill Stein of the Green Party, Clinton and Trump are tied at 35%.  Of note, Johnson receives double-digit support, 12%, among registered voters in Iowa.  Of the three states, Stein does best in the Hawkeye State with 6%.

In Ohio, Clinton is up over Trump, 43% to 38%, among the statewide electorate.  Last month, Clinton and Trump were tied with 39% each.  Clinton maintains a similar advantage over Trump when Johnson and Stein are included in the tossup.  Johnson receives double-digit support, 12%, statewide.  Stein has the backing of 4%.

In Pennsylvania, Clinton, 48%, has an 11 point lead over Trump, 37%, among registered voters statewide.  Previously, Clinton had a 9 point advantage over Trump, 45% to 36%.  Little changes in the contest when Johnson and Stein are added into the equation.

Clinton has made some gains among moderates.  In Iowa, Clinton’s edge over Trump has only inched up from 17 points to 20 points.  But, in Ohio, Clinton now leads Trump among moderates by 24 points, up from just 8 points last month.  And, in Pennsylvania, Clinton currently outdistances Trump by 19 points among this group compared with 14 points in July.

“The convention dust has settled in these three critical battleground states,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.  “Despite the national spotlight of the conventions focused on each candidate, Clinton and Trump have not made any headway in voters’ positive impressions of them.”

Clinton and Trump are both unpopular in Iowa, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.  57% of residents in Iowa, 60% in Ohio, and 53% of Pennsylvania residents have an unfavorable opinion of Clinton.  Looking at Trump’s favorability, 64% of Iowans, 61% of Ohio residents, and 63% of those in Pennsylvania have an unfavorable opinion of him.  Clinton and Trump received similar scores in the July NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll.

Tim Kaine and Mike Pence are still not well known in each of these states.  In Iowa, 45% of residents have either never heard of Kaine, 14%, or are unsure how to rate him 31%.  31% of adults statewide have a favorable opinion of Kaine while 24% have an unfavorable one.  In Ohio, Kaine has low name recognition among 42% of adults who have either never heard of him, 16%, or are unsure how to rate him, 26%.  More than three in ten residents in Ohio, 32%, have a positive view of Kaine while 26% have a negative opinion of him.  In Pennsylvania, 41% of the statewide electorate have either never heard of Kaine, 12%, or are unsure how to rate him, 29%.  36% of Pennsylvania adults think well of Kaine while 23% have an unfavorable view of him.

Turning to Pence, 41% of Iowans have either never heard of him, 14%, or are unsure how to rate him, 27%.  34% have a positive opinion of him while 25% have a negative impression of Pence.  In Ohio, 37% adults have either never heard of Pence, 14%, or are unsure how to rate him, 23%.  34% of Ohio adults have a favorable opinion of him while 30% do not.  In Pennsylvania, Pence is not well known to 38% of residents who have either never heard of him, 13%, or are unsure how to rate him, 25%.  34% of residents in Pennsylvania think well of Pence while 28% have an unfavorable view of him.

In the contest for U.S. Senate in Iowa, Chuck Grassley, the Republican, receives the support of 52% of registered voters to 42% for Democrat Patty Judge.  Grassley maintains his advantage over Judge.  In the July NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll, identical proportions of registered voters were for Grassley, 52%, and Judge, 42%.

In Ohio, Republican incumbent Rob Portman, 48%, is up over his Democratic challenger Ted Strickland, 43%, by 5 points among registered voters statewide.  Last month, Portman and Strickland were tied with each receiving 44%.

In Pennsylvania, Democrat Katie McGinty, 48%, edges Republican incumbent Pat Toomey, 44%, among the statewide electorate.  Previously, McGinty garnered 47% to 44% for Toomey.

Looking at the job approval rating of President Barack Obama in each of these states, the president does best in Pennsylvania.  49% of Pennsylvania residents approve of how he is doing in office.  An identical 49% had this view last month.  42% of Pennsylvania adults currently disapprove of how the president is doing in office.  In Iowa, 46% of residents approve of Mr. Obama’s job performance while 41% disapprove.  Iowans divided, 45% to 43%, in July.  In Ohio, 47% think well of President Obama’s job performance while 44% disapprove.  Previously, 44% of Ohio adults approved of how the president was doing in office while 44% did not.

Complete August 10, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll Release of Iowa, Ohio, and Pennsylvania

Complete August 10, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of Iowa (Adults and Registered Voters)

Complete August 10, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of Ohio (Adults and Registered Voters)

Complete August 10, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of Pennsylvania (Adults and Registered Voters)

Marist Poll Methodology for Iowa

Nature of the Sample for Iowa

Marist Poll Methodology for Ohio

Nature of the Sample for Ohio

Marist Poll Methodology for Pennsylvania

Nature of the Sample for Pennsylvania  

8/5: Clinton with Wide Lead over Trump Nationally

In a national survey conducted from Monday through Wednesday this week[†], Democrats Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine, 48%, lead Republicans Donald Trump and Mike Pence, 33%, by 15 points among registered voters in the race for the White House.  12% say they would not support either candidate if the election were held today, and 2% say they would back someone else.  Five percent are undecided.  Clinton has gained support while Trump has lost ground since last month’s McClatchy-Marist Poll.  At that time, Clinton, 42%, and Trump, 39%, were competitive among the national electorate.

“Add a long list of unforced errors by Trump to Clinton’s post-convention bounce, and you end up with a Trump candidacy in jeopardy,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.  “The tale of the tape is that Trump now trails Clinton by double digits and, in contrast with Clinton, is viewed as unacceptable by the majority of the electorate.”

Democrats have coalesced around Clinton.  Clinton has the backing of 90% of Democrats, up from 83% in July.  However, more than one in ten Republicans does not support either Trump or Clinton.  Among Republicans, 79% back Trump, down from 85%.  37% of independent voters are behind Clinton while 31% are for Trump.  20% of independents say they will not back either candidate.

Clinton has improved her standing among white voters.  In the previous McClatchy-Marist Poll, Trump was ahead of Clinton by 15 points among this group, 49% to 34%.  Currently, Trump and Clinton are competitive, 41% for Trump to 39% for Clinton.

Interestingly, Clinton has made gains among both college and non-college white voters.  Last time, Clinton led Trump by 4 points among white voters with a college degree.  Clinton is now ahead of Trump among this group by 12 points, 48% for Clinton to 36% for Trump.  Clinton has also cut into Trump’s advantage among white voters without a college education.  Last month, Trump outdistanced Clinton by 28 points among these voters.  Now, his lead is only 15 points, 46% for Trump to 31% for Clinton.

Clinton has enhanced her standing among African American voters nationally.  Clinton has the support of 93% of African Americans, a boost from 81% last time.  Among Latino voters, Clinton has maintained approximately a two-to-one advantage over Trump.

Clinton has made inroads among men.  She now leads Trump among men, 45% to 37%, compared with last time when she trailed Trump by 14 points.  Clinton maintains her lead among women, 50% for Clinton to 30% for Trump.

Are voters supporting their choice of candidate because they are for their candidate selection or because they are against his or her opponent?  57% of Clinton’s supporters report they plan to vote for Clinton, up from 49% in July.  40% of Clinton’s backers support her because they are against Trump, down from 48%.  Looking at voters behind Trump, 57% say they plan to vote for Trump because they are against Clinton.  36% report their ballot will be in support of Trump.  This is little changed from last month’s findings.

Both Clinton and Trump’s favorable ratings are upside down.  But, while Clinton’s favorable score has improved, Trump’s is little changed since the last McClatchy-Marist Poll.  Clinton now has a net negative of 15 points, down from 25 points last time.  40% of Americans have a favorable opinion of her, and 55% currently have an unfavorable impression of Clinton.  Trump has a net negative of 38 points, up from 34 points before the Republican National Convention.  28% of residents think well of Trump while 66% have a negative opinion of him.

Looking at the favorable scores of their respective running mates, both Virginia Senator Tim Kaine and Indiana Governor Mike Pence are better known than before they were selected.  On the Democratic side, 35% of Americans have a positive view of Clinton’s vice presidential selection, Tim Kaine, up from 16% previously.  26% have an unfavorable impression of him.  14% have never heard of him, down from 45% pre-convention.  24% are unsure how to rate him.  On the Republican side, 29% of voters have a favorable opinion of Trump’s running mate Mike Pence, up from 12 points last month.  31% have an unfavorable opinion of him an increase from 21 points last time.  17% have never heard of Pence, down from 56%, and 23% are unsure how to rate him.

When Gary Johnson, the Libertarian, and Jill Stein of the Green Party are factored into the presidential contest, Clinton, 45%, still leads Trump, 31%, by a similar 14 points among registered voters nationally.  Johnson receives the support of 10% to 6% for Stein.  One percent supports another candidate, and 8% are undecided.   In the previous McClatchy-Marist Poll, Clinton received 40% to 35% for Trump, 10% for Johnson, and 5% for Stein.

On the issues driving the national discourse, Clinton outperforms Trump.  Clinton scores best on the questions pertaining to the treatment of Muslim Americans and issues facing gay, lesbian, and transgender Americans.  She is perceived weakest on the question of who would be more trusted to handle the creation of new jobs.  Still, the plurality of voters, 48%, now have more faith in Clinton to handle job creation.  On each of these questions, more voters say they trust Clinton, and fewer cite Trump when compared with the previous McClatchy-Marist Poll.

 

When it comes to a comparison of the qualities of the two candidates, Clinton also does better than Trump.  More than six in ten voters, 61%, say Clinton has the experience, and a majority of voters consider Clinton to be the candidate with the temperament to be president, 57%.  Pluralities of voters say Clinton is closer to them on the issues, 49%, is more likely to care about the average person, 48%, and is the one who shares their values, 46%.  While 25% of the electorate report that “honest and trustworthy” describes neither Clinton nor Trump, Clinton, 37%, now surpasses Trump, 33%, on that question.

Most voters consider the stakes of this election to be high.  77% of registered voters, compared with 73% last month, say it makes a big difference if Clinton or Trump is elected in November.  12% report it makes some difference while only 7% think it makes no difference at all.  In 2012, 60% of voters thought the candidate who was elected would make a big difference.

If Clinton were elected, a majority of the electorate, 53%, considers that to be either totally acceptable, 26%, or mostly acceptable, 27%.  However, this is not the case for Trump.  Close to six in ten voters, 59%, think it is mostly unacceptable, 13%, or totally unacceptable, 46%, if he were elected President of the United States.

How do the Democratic and Republican parties fare in the court of public opinion?  45% of voters, similar to the 44% in the previous McClatchy-Marist Poll, have a favorable impression of the Democratic Party while 48% have an unfavorable opinion of it.  Last month, 51% had a negative impression of the Democratic Party.  36% of voters have a favorable opinion of the Republican Party while 56% have an unfavorable one.  This is little changed from the 34% and 60%, respectively, who held these views in July.

49% of voters say that, if this November’s congressional elections were held today, they are more likely to support the Democratic candidate.  41% are more likely to back the Republican in their district.  Last time, 50% said they would back the Democratic candidate while 43% were planning to support the GOP candidate.

Looking at the job approval rating of President Barack Obama, the president’s score is at its highest point in seven years.  53% of registered voters, compared with 51% last month, approve of how the president is performing in office.  This is the president’s highest approval rating since October 2009 when the identical proportion of voters, 53%, thought well of his job performance.

Although most Americans are still concerned about the nation’s trajectory, more are optimistic about the direction of the nation than they were just a month ago.  34% report the country is moving in the right direction while 59% say it is moving in the wrong one.  Last month, 25% of U.S. residents thought the nation was on the right course while 68% said it was moving on the incorrect path.

[†] This national survey was conducted August 1st through August 3rd, 2016

Complete August 5, 2016 McClatchy-Marist Poll of the United States

Marist Poll Methodology

Nature of the Sample

8/4: McClatchy-Marist Poll

Where does the presidential contest stand nationally?  Find out in the latest national McClatchy-Marist Poll.

To read the full McClatchy article, click here.

 

7/21: Obama Approval Rating Solid Despite Pessimism about America’s Future

While a slim majority of registered voters nationally have a positive opinion of President Barack Obama’s job performance, the attitude of the national electorate toward how Congress is doing its job remains sour.  On the whole, many Americans have a pessimistic view of the direction of the nation, a sentiment reflected in their opinions about their financial situation.  While a majority of Americans say their family finances will remain the same in the upcoming year, there has been a dip in those who believe their financial picture will improve.  Additionally, nearly six in ten U.S. residents assert future generations will be worse off financially.

51% of registered voters approve of the job President Obama is doing in office, and 43% disapprove.  President Obama’s approval rating is significantly better than those of the Republicans and Democrats in Congress.  More than seven in ten voters, 72%, disapprove of the job performance of the Republicans in Congress, and 55% have a negative opinion of how congressional Democrats are doing their job.  On each of these questions, there has been little change since McClatchy-Marist last reported them in April.

Looking at Americans’ opinions toward the direction of the nation, 68% of residents think the country is moving in the wrong direction while 25% say it is moving in the right one.  In the spring, nearly identical proportions of Americans had these views.

While a majority of Americans, 56%, say their personal family finances will remain about the same in the coming year, 28% report their financial situation will get better.  17% say it will get worse.  While there has been a slight downtick in the proportion of residents who think their family finances will improve, residents are not increasingly negative about their money matters.  When this question was last asked in the fall, 33% of Americans said their finances would get better, 15% reported they would deteriorate, and 52% thought they would remain about the same.

Americans under 45 years of age, 37%, are nearly twice as likely as those who are older, 19%, to have an optimistic view of their personal family finances.  Men, 31%, are also more likely than women, 24%, to think their finances will improve in the next year.  Women, 60%, are more likely than men, 52%, to say their financial outlook will reflect its current state.  Racial differences also exist.  Only 18% of white residents say their finances will improve compared with 41% of Latinos and 48% of African Americans.

A majority of adults nationally, 57%, think future generations will be worse off financially than people today.  19% say younger Americans will be better off, and about one in four, 24%, believes their financial picture will be about the same as this generation.  Republicans, 72%, are more likely than Democrats, 41%, and independents, 61%, to report future generations will be worse off.  Americans 45 years of age or older, 61%, are more likely than younger residents to believe America’s youth will be in a worse financial spot.  Still, a majority of those under 45, 52%, have this view.  White residents, 63%, are more likely than African Americans, 40%, and Latinos, 36%, to say future generations will be worse off financially than their elders.

Complete July 21, 2016 McClatchy-Marist Poll of the United States

Marist Poll Methodology

Nature of the Sample

7/20: McClatchy-Marist Poll

What do registered voters nationally think of President Barack Obama’s job performance?  Find out in the latest national McClatchy-Marist Poll.

 To read the full McClatchy article, click here.

Complete McClatchy-Marist Poll tables and methodology

7/18: Beyond the Bounce

July 18, 2016 by  
Filed under Featured, Lee Miringoff

The GOP and Democratic political conventions are finally upon us.  They will be scored by the media for tone and how well each side makes its case to Americans.  No sooner will the gavel end these proceedings for campaign 2016, then those of us in the public opinion community will try to measure how the public reacted. But, beware the post-convention bounce.  If history is any guide, there is no guarantee that there will be a significant change in the presidential contest as a result of the conventions, or that it will be long-lasting.

Relying upon public opinion polls to draw accurate conclusions about the relative success of each convention can be tricky. There is no one, proven formula to anticipate what is a “good,” post-convention bounce, and subsequently, what “good” or “bad” means for the future of each campaign.

In fact, there are many factors which give meaning to post-convention polls.  First, both Trump and Clinton are well-known to the public even if neither one is particularly well-liked.  The spectacles in Cleveland and Philadelphia are likely to have important and lasting moments, but the public is not likely to learn much new about either presidential candidate.

Second, history tells us that the underdog is more likely to receive a significant post-convention lift, but it is, more times than not, short-lived.  Barry Goldwater and Walter Mondale are two examples that come to mind.  But, with candidates at the top of each 2016 ticket that are already household names, in a campaign that has had its unprecedented share of surprises, who exactly is the underdog?

Third, the most recent and impactful convention was 1992.  Bill Clinton rose to the occasion.  But, there were other factors at work including the unexpected withdrawal of Ross Perot as the convention came to a close.

Fourth, like the last two quadrennial gatherings, these conventions are back-to-back.  For political junkies, this may give the appearance of one two-week political fix and reduce the potential for a significant change in the contest.

This is not to say that the conventions will be irrelevant.  Unforced errors, in what are increasingly well-scripted events, can still occur.  Clint Eastwood’s chair comes to mind.  Also, according to the latest McClatchy-Marist Poll, both Trump and Clinton have plenty of work to do.  Trump needs to secure supporters of the other 16 candidates during the primaries.  Right now, Trump has the support of only 60% of voters who said they backed someone else in a GOP primary.  Clinton still needs to convince Sanders’ backers that she is the right choice.  Clinton only attracts 57% of those who “felt the Bern” during the nomination fight.

Of course, the reaction of the national electorate to the conventions obscures how voters in each state (and therefore, the Electoral College totals) view the four nights of the political hoopla in Cleveland and Philadelphia.  The NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll conducted pre-convention surveys in seven key battleground states.  They show very competitive races in the Midwest states of Iowa and Ohio and a Clinton advantage in Colorado, Florida, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Virginia.  Pre-convention, Trump and Clinton both have negatives that outpace their positives.

What should you look for post-convention?  Have there been any changes in Americans’ impressions of the candidates?  Has the political dialogue changed, and which candidate’s agenda is ruling the day?  Does their respective selection for Vice President suggest leadership, consensus, or pandering?  Does it reflect an appeal to their base supporters or an opportunity to reach out to undecided voters?  Do the candidates score differently as tickets post-convention than they did pre-convention when matched one on one?  The plan is to revisit these states after the shows move on to see whether voters have changed.

Whatever the result of the conventions, one thing we do know for sure.  Most Americans believe this is an election that will truly make a difference depending upon who wins or loses.  73% of Americans express this opinion today compared with only 60% who shared this view just four years ago.

So, will there be a bounce? Will it be long-lasting? Or, just a blip.  Stay tuned.

 

7/16: McClatchy-Marist Poll

What do voters nationally think of the potential vice presidential picks of presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton?  Find out in the latest national McClatchy-Marist Poll.

To read the full McClatchy article, click here.

Complete McClatchy-Marist Poll tables and methodology

7/15: McClatchy-Marist Poll

How do Democrats and Republicans view the nation’s most pressing issues?  Find out in the latest national McClatchy-Marist Poll.

To read the full McClatchy article, click here.

Complete McClatchy-Marist tables and methodology

7/15: Colorado, Florida, North Carolina, & Virginia: Clinton with Pre-Convention Advantage

Presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton is ahead of presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump by single digits in the battleground states of Colorado, Florida, North Carolina, and Virginia.  With 9 electoral votes on the line in Colorado, 29 in Florida, 15 in North Carolina, and 13 at stake in Virginia, Clinton has the early edge.  In 2008 and 2012, President Barack Obama carried these states with the exception of North Carolina.  Obama lost North Carolina by 2 points in 2012.

In Colorado, Clinton, 43%, is ahead of Trump, 35%, among registered voters statewide.  Among those who say they definitely plan to vote in November, Clinton’s advantage remains 8 points.

In Florida, 44% of registered voters support Clinton to 37% for Trump.  When the NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll last reported this question in March, Clinton received 49% of the statewide electorate to 41% for Trump.  Among Florida’s registered voters who say they definitely plan to vote, three points currently separate Clinton and Trump.

In North Carolina, Clinton garners the support of 44% of registered voters compared with 38% for Trump.  Clinton and Trump are separated by four points among those who report they definitely plan to vote in November.

In Virginia, Clinton, 44%, leads Trump, 35%, among registered voters statewide.  Among those who say they will definitely go to the polls on Election Day, Clinton is up by 10 points.

In each of these four states, Clinton’s Democratic base is intact as is Trump’s support among Republicans.  Although Clinton leads Trump by almost 20 points in Colorado among independent voters, independents in all four states have not coalesced behind either candidate.  In fact, more than one in four independents in Florida and North Carolina say they support neither Clinton nor Trump, back another candidate, or are undecided.  About one in three independents in Colorado and Virginia say the same.

A gender gap exists in Colorado, North Carolina, and Virginia.  49% of women in Colorado, 50% in North Carolina, and 52% of female voters in Virginia support Clinton while 42% of men in Colorado, 46% in North Carolina, and 41% of male voters in Virginia are for Trump.  In Florida, Clinton, 45%, leads Trump, 35%, among women.  Among Florida voters who are men, Clinton, 42%, and Trump, 39%, are closely matched.

In each of these four states, Trump leads Clinton by double digits among white voters without a college degree.  In North Carolina, 56%, and Virginia, 54%, Trump receives majority support among these voters.  In Florida and Colorado, Trump receives the backing of pluralities of white voters without a college degree, 47% and 44%, respectively.  However, he underperforms what Mitt Romney received among these voters in 2012.

Among white voters with a college education, Clinton garners the support of pluralities in Colorado, 49%, and Virginia, 42%.  Trump, 41%, and Clinton, 39%, are competitive among white voters with a college education in North Carolina.  In Florida, Trump receives 44% to Clinton’s 39% among this group.  Although Trump underperforms the Republican share from 2012, Clinton receives about the same support as Obama among these voters.

“With 66 electoral votes at stake in these four states, Donald Trump is playing catchup against Hillary Clinton,” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.  “The driving force behind voters’ choices is the negative impressions they have of both Trump and Clinton.  Clinton’s single-digit lead in each of these states is due to her slight advantage in how voters perceive the two candidates.”

In a four-way contest with Gary Johnson, the Libertarian, and Jill Stein of the Green Party, little changes in these four states.  Clinton retains her single-digit advantage over Trump.

Clinton and Trump are unpopular in each of the states polled, and their favorable scores are upside down.   59% of residents in Colorado, 56% of those in Florida, 58% in North Carolina, and 57% of adults in Virginia have a negative opinion of Clinton.  Impressions of Trump aren’t any better.  68% of Colorado adults, 63% of Floridians, 61% of North Carolina residents, and 64% of those in Virginia have an unfavorable impression of Trump.

Turning to the contests for U.S. Senate, Democratic incumbent Michael Bennet, 53%, leads his Republican challenger Darryl Glenn, 38%, by 15 points among Colorado’s registered voters.  In Florida, a hypothetical matchup between former presidential candidate and Republican Senator Marco Rubio and potential opponent Democrat Patrick Murphy, shows a close contest, 47% to 44%, among the statewide electorate.  In North Carolina, incumbent Senator Richard Burr, 48%, leads Democrat Deborah Ross, 41%, among the North Carolina electorate.

In the race for governor in North Carolina, Democrat Roy Cooper, 49%, is competitive against Republican Governor Pat McCrory, 45%, among registered voters statewide.

The job performance of President Barack Obama is viewed more positively than negatively by residents in each of these states.  In Colorado, 50% of adults approve of how the president is doing his job while 41% disapprove.  In Florida, 49% of residents statewide approve of how President Obama is performing while 41% do not.  Floridians were divided, 48% to 44%, in the March NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll.  In North Carolina, the president’s approval rating stands at 49% among residents statewide while his negative score is at 42%.  In Virginia, 49% think the president is doing his job well while 43% disapprove.

Complete July 15, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll Release of Colorado, Florida, North Carolina, and Virginia

Complete July 15, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of Colorado (Adults and Registered Voters)

Complete July 15, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of Florida (Adults and Registered Voters)

Complete July 15, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of North Carolina (Adults and Registered Voters)

Complete July 15, 2016 NBC News/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll of Virginia (Adults and Registered Voters)

Marist Poll Methodology for Colorado

Nature of the Sample for Colorado

Marist Poll Methodology for Florida

Nature of the Sample for Florida

Marist Poll Methodology for North Carolina

Nature of the Sample for North Carolina

Marist Poll Methodology for Virginia

Nature of the Sample for Virginia

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