Thursday, August 18, 2016

RealClearPolitics - General Election: Trump vs. Clinton vs. Johnson vs. Stein

RealClearPolitics - General Election: Trump vs. Clinton vs. Johnson vs. Stein

Trump's bleeding seems to have stopped. In a four-way race, Clinton is leading by an average of four points in this week's four major polls (Rasmussen 2, Pew 4, Reuters 4, Economist 6). That's the same as the previous polls for Rasmussen and Economist, and a drop of one point (statistically meaningless) for Clinton in Reuters. That stabilization is consistent with 538's polls-only forecast, which showed Trump making a tremendous decline from July 30 (50% chance of winning) to August 8th (12%), then becoming a flat-line in the 11-13 range.

There are three new Trump vs Clinton (no other candidate) polls out this week, and all three show exactly the same trend: Clinton has fallen by one point since the previous poll. She fell from +10 to +9 on NBC; from +7 to +6 on The Economist, and from +6 to +5 on Reuters. While one point is not statistically meaningful, the fact that all three polls show precisely the same trend seems to be a solid indicator that her engine has stalled.

The Pew report shows that the biggest gap between the attitudes of Trump and Clinton supporters lies in their answers to this question: "Compared to life 50 years ago, life for people like you in America is ..."

87% of Trump supporters say the same or worse. (Compared to only 37% for Clinton).

The answer to this question is directly correlated to education levels. The +/- for better minus worse is:

Postgrad +22
College grad 0
some college -16
high school or less -26

Note that black voters overwhelmingly think things have improved, so the responses from white people who never attended college must be extremely negative. Whether it is true or not, uneducated white voters feel that America has gotten worse for them.

Here's a sad trend from the full Pew report:

"Do you think the future of the next generation of Americans will be better, worse, or about the same as life today?:

February, 2000: 44 better, 27 worse
Today: 25 better, 48 worse

This trend, however, is cyclical. In 1995 it was "16 better, 58 worse," but it shot up dramatically in Bill Clinton's second term, only to be scotched eventually by 9/11 pessimism.

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