First, we heard Donald Trump’s popularity was just a passing phenomenon. Yet poll after poll proved the candidate’s popularity had staying power.
Now, with the first caucuses fast approaching — and the GOP frontrunner’s lead only widening against his GOP rivals in most polls — we hear Trump is “not electable.”
Such is the refrain from both the liberal media and the Republican “establishment.”
But a fresh poll shines a harsh light on the Donald’s “electability”– harsh if you’re the establishment, that is. It shows the GOP frontrunner in a dead heat with presumptive Democrat nominee Hillary Clinton.
Via Rasmussen Reports:Presidential frontrunners Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump remain all tied up in a hypothetical matchup heading into 2016. If the 2016 presidential election was held today, 37% of Likely U.S. Voters would vote for Clinton, while 36% would vote for Trump. A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that a sizable 22% would choose some other candidate, while five percent (5%) are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
These findings are nearly identical to those measured in October when Trump picked up 38% support to Clinton’s 36%.
It’s worth remembering that many predicted Trump’s demise (again) and further general election electability problems following the candidate’s proposal to temporarily ban all Muslims entry to the U.S. But according to this new poll, conducted just a week ago, that hardly had an effect. In fact, Rasmussen notes:
Despite intense criticism from both his Democratic and Republican presidential rivals, Trump’s proposed ban on Muslims coming to the United States has the support of a sizable majority of Republicans – and a plurality of all voters.
Seventy-five percent (75%) of Democrats back Clinton, up five points from October. Trump draws support from 63% of Republicans, virtually unchanged from the previous survey. Unaffiliated voters prefer Trump 36% to 25%, but 29% of these voters like some other candidate. These findings also are similar to the October survey.
The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on December 22-23, 2015 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
The race between Clinton and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders is closer than ever following the Democrats’ most recent debate, but Clinton is the heavy favorite among voters who are already certain of their vote in 2016.
Trump still holds the lead in our latest look at the race for the GOP presidential nomination following his party’s latest debate. Trump’s voters are by far the least likely to say they’re going to change their minds.
It’s also worth noting that at least one recent study suggested Trump’s popularity is UNDERREPORTED by polls, particularly those on the phone or in person. Which would suggest that, in this case, he may even give Hillary Clinton more of a challenge than the numbers here suggest.
So, it appears that the Trump naysayers — in the liberal media and the Republican establishment who, interestingly, seem to be in alignment on this issue — are running out of excuses to diminish Trump.
And let’s not forget, “electability” brought us John McCain, Mitt Romney, and even John Kerry. How’d that all work out?
And, yet again, these two institutions are reminded that the power to elect lies with the people. And the people are in no mood these days to be told whom they should elect or “what’s best” for them — by either the media OR the political establishment.
[Note: This article was written by Michelle Jesse, Associate Editor]