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Poll shows Trump Trails Behind All Top 2020 Democratic Challengers

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Poll shows Trump Trails Behind All Top 2020 Democratic Challengers

2019-09-12 17:21:01

By Laura Tucker, Staff writer; Image: Joe Biden (Image source: Gage Skidmore via Wikimedia Commons)



The polling news just continues to get worse and worse for Donald Trump. Not only are the polls this month showing that the majority is not planning on voting for him, but now in theoretical matchups. Five of the top Democrats in the race would beat him.  

It could seem like a little deja vu for Trump. The odds were stacked against him in 2016, and the polls showed him losing to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. While he did lose the popularity vote, he won the electoral college.


But this is different. The voters that pulled the lever for him in 2016 were voting for hope. They didn't know what he represented. Now they do. Love him or hate him, now they do.  

The new Washington Post-ABC News poll pitted Trump against former Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA), and South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D).


With the first four, Trump trailed behind them in a proposed matchup either significantly or modestly. He was the most behind Biden, with percentages of 59 percent for Biden to 40 percent for Trump of registered voters support, among all adults Trump fares worse with 38 percent, but Biden fares a little worse as well with 54 percent. 

He fared equally against Sanders, Warren, and Harris, getting either 43 or 44 percent, while his opponents receive 52, 51, and 50 percent, with Sanders getting the highest percentage of 52.


Warren has a seven-point lead with registered voters yet an 11 percent lead among all adults. With Harris it's similar with a seven-point and 10-point lead. 

Trump still only had 43 percent against Buttigieg, but the mayor only received 47, meaning 10 percent just couldn't decide whether they wanted the president or the mayor in office, with the registered voters' to overall voters' split being four and six percent. 

Trump is faring worse than he did when the same poll was conducted in July. Two months ago only Biden was ahead in the poll by a large margin. There was a double-digit difference between Trump and Biden, while the other Democrats were within two points of the president.


A similar poll conducted again by Washington Post-ABC News showed that Trump's approval rating has slipped as well within that two-month span from 44 percent down to just 38 percent. So just as voters are less approving of his job performance as president, they are also not supporting him as much in contests against Democrats. 

It's notable that while Trump overcame the insurmountable odds before to win, no modern-day president has been reelected with approval ratings as low as Trump's.  

However, at this point in former President Barack Obama's first term, his approval rating was just 43 percent. Five points higher than Trump, which is sure to really bother him, but Obama also rebounded to reach 50 percent before the 2012 election and victory over Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT). 

Trump's unfavorable rating was at 59 percent in 2016, but he still won the presidential election, but that's because Clinton's approval rating was the same. They were both unpopular with many people voting for the lesser of two evils. In fact, they were the two least popular nominees in modern history. 

None of the Democratic candidates that were included in this poll had an unfavorable rating. Biden has a 16-point favorable difference, and Sanders 12. Warren, Harris, and Buttigieg's favorable ratings are either modestly positive or roughly even.


One troubling area of support for Trump is with white women without college degrees. In post-election exit polling and voter surveys, he won among the group by margins of 23 to 27 percent. 

But in this current poll, he is running about even with the Democratic candidates with this group. Each Democrat has at least 45 percent support among that group and over half of them support Biden again Trump.


A little more than half of voting-age women without college degrees disapprove of Trump, while only 42 percent approve of his job performance. In April and July those margins were in reverse. It'a demographic that is being monitored closely. 

This poll was conducted from September 2 through 5 with a random sampling of 1,003 adults by telephone on both cell phones and landlines. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.5 percent.

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