This is certainly a tumultuous time in American politics, and we really shouldn’t be expecting to wrap this 2020 election up tidily and without incident.
By every indication so far, it looks as though President Donald Trump is not confident that the election itself can trusted – even though we’re still two months away. This is because, according to him, mail-in voting and other forms of meddling could work in one candidate’s favor or another.
There is also the perceived threat of mail-in voting – a necessity on account of the coronavirus pandemic – as the President continues to raise doubts about the process’s security.
And while this is all unique and surprising enough, new polls seem to indicate that Trump has more important things to worry about.
President Trump’s support has eroded among key groups of voters who backed him in 2016 — a major reason why he continues to trail former Vice President Joe Biden and a prime motivator for the president’s reelection strategy of emphasizing violent disorder in the nation’s cities.
Trump’s decline among parts of his 2016 base is a chief finding so far from the USC Dornsife Daybreak Poll, which tracked voter preferences daily four years ago and is doing so again this year. Overall, Trump has lost support from about 9% of voters who backed him in 2016, the poll finds.
How bad was it?
The net result is a Biden lead of 11 points, 52% to 41%, in the poll’s latest results as of Monday, after the Republican convention. A rolling average of results over the last week has been virtually the same, 53% to 41%.
“Independents who lean toward the Republican Party seem to have been temporarily swayed by Biden’s message” during the Democratic convention, said Jill Darling, the survey director for the USC Dornsife poll. That widened Biden’s lead for a bit. But “Trump’s dark view of the Democrats’ agenda seems to have swept them back into the fold, so the overall result is pretty much a wash.”
Biden’s lead is almost double the 6-point lead that the poll showed for Hillary Clinton at this point four years ago. Clinton was then on a downward track, declining from the large boost she had received from her convention.
Of course, it would be foolish to ignore the fact that the political news cycle is currently operating at warp speed, making the two months between now and election day feel like an eternity.