As we look ahead to the next major primary contest in this ever-more-contentious primary race for president, a new poll shows the race in New York tightening on both sides. And one candidate in particular has cut a whopping 30 points off the massive lead of the frontrunner since the last poll taken just a few weeks ago.
Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders has gained significant ground on Hillary Clinton in the upcoming New York primary, shaving off 30 points from the massive lead Clinton held in New York just three weeks ago. He now trails the former Secretary of State by 18 points (56% to 38%). In a March 17 ECPS poll, conducted in the days following Clinton’s decisive performance on Super Tuesday II, she was winning by 48 points (71% to 23%) among Democratic primary voters in New York.
In the Empire State’s GOP primary race, frontrunner Donald Trump has lost 8 points in the same three weeks but still holds a commanding home-field advantage over Texas Senator Ted Cruz, 56% to 22%, with Ohio Governor John Kasich finishing third with 17%.
Trump receives 61% of the male vote but drops to 51% of the female vote. He also wins in every age group, with his weakest support (42%) coming from voters ages 18-34. Trump has a much higher loyalty rating (82%) than Cruz (45%); loyalty is defined as the number of people who say they like the candidate and are also voting for them.
While frontrunners Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump maintain significant leads, the latest poll shows how quickly things can change — and should be causing some angst in the Clinton camp in particular.
For what it’s worth, the same polling outfit underestimated the gap between the winners and second-place candidates by quite a bit. In the poll Emerson released the day before Wisconsin, it showed Cruz with 40% to Trump’s 35% support; final tally in Wisconsin primary was Cruz 48.2% to 35.1%. On the Democrat side, the Emerson poll showed Sanders leading Clinton by 8 points, while in the final count he beat her by more than 13%. Whether this suggests an overall flaw in the poll — or another reminder of how fast things can shift in the final days leading up to a contest — it’s worth considering as we look ahead to New York.
[Note: This article was written by Michelle Jesse, Associate Editor]