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How Trump’s doing in polls, both in Minnesota and nationally

I’ll be very brief. In my previous piece, urging you not to obsesses too much on polls this far ahead of Election Day (even though I can’t help myself from doing so), and encouraging you to focus (if you must, even though you shouldn’t) on swing state polls, I also mentioned that there were no recent poll results of President Donald Trump versus former Vice President Joe Biden in our own dear Minnesota, which I can’t quite stand to let myself view as a real swing state even though it was very close in 2016.

So, sure enough, there’s a new Minnesota Poll (viewable here) of  Trump vs. Biden and it showed Biden leading Trump by 49-44 percent. 7 percent are undecided. The poll was conducted by a combine of the Star Tribune, MPR and KARE-11.

So there’s that. Not a big gap. Not a teensy gap. 

I’ll mention one other polling-related matter, which is to update my occasional series on Trump’s national approval ratings, which I still check every day even though the numbers never move around much, which I at least used to find amazing, given the general volatility of this presidency. As usual, I rely on an average of many recent approval polls, as maintained by FiveThirtyEight.com. 

The update is bad but not terrible for the current incumbent. It shows Trump (as always) under water (meaning he has more disapprovers than approvers). But this weekend was the first time in more than two months that the negative gap was in double digits, meaning the percentage of disapprovers was 10+ percentage points higher than approvers.

The actual numbers, as of Tuesday morning, are 43 percent approval, versus 53.3 percent disapproval, a gap of 10.3 percentage points.

The most amazing thing, to me at least, has always been how stable Trump’s approval rating is. But the trend over the past few days is fairly steep.

Look at it yourself, here.

Comments (17)

  1. Submitted by Bob Tourdot on 05/26/2020 - 09:31 am.

    What are those 44% thinking?

    • Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 05/26/2020 - 09:59 am.

      That question puzzles me as well, When talking with the Trumpie in-laws can never get a reasonable answer/conversation. It would be interesting to know what Hitlers approval ratings looked like right up until Germany was bombed into oblivion, I hate to say it but suspect they would be similar, Can’t have rationale conversations with irrational people.

      • Submitted by David Markle on 05/26/2020 - 11:09 am.

        Hitler was very popular. He was seen as a savior from the post-WWI depression. Folks had his picture high on the wall, just as they did here with FDR.

        • Submitted by Leon Webster on 05/26/2020 - 01:02 pm.

          My father arrived in Germany in May, 1945. He said there wasn’t a Nazi to be found. I don’t’ know that there was any polling in Germany during the war — and certainly, I expect folks would have been circumspect in how they answered any questions. But I am also sure that Hitler would have enjoyed wide support, at least at some point in his rule.

          My guess is that in a few years we won’t be able to find anyone who supported Trump. “like a miracle, it will disappear.”.

    • Submitted by Paul Brandon on 05/26/2020 - 11:08 am.

      They weren’t.
      But then the 538 ten point gap probably is a better predictor.

    • Submitted by Eric Snyder on 05/26/2020 - 02:58 pm.

      Many of them aren’t and possibly can’t in any systematic way–a politically unmentionable fact about our society.

      For example:

      “According to a new Yahoo News/YouGov poll, 44 percent of Republicans believe that Bill Gates is plotting to use a mass COVID-19 vaccination campaign as a pretext to implant microchips in billions of people and monitor their movements — a widely debunked conspiracy theory with no basis in fact.

      The survey, which was conducted May 20 and 21, found that only 26 percent of Republicans correctly identify the story as false.

      In contrast, just 19 percent of Democrats believe the same spurious narrative about the Microsoft founder and public-health philanthropist. A majority of Democrats recognize that it’s not true.”
      https://news.yahoo.com/new-yahoo-news-you-gov-poll-shows-coronavirus-conspiracy-theories-spreading-on-the-right-may-hamper-vaccine-efforts-152843610.html

    • Submitted by Pat Terry on 05/26/2020 - 03:25 pm.

      Go look at your crazy uncle’s Facebook page. There is a completely different, and largely fictional news narrative.

  2. Submitted by Brian Simon on 05/26/2020 - 11:14 am.

    I’ll admit I’m a bit surprised at Trump being that close to Biden in MN. I still think he’s unlikely to win on election day.

  3. Submitted by Ray Schoch on 05/26/2020 - 11:15 am.

    To use candidate Jason Lewis’ phrase in answer to Bob Tourdot and Dennis Wagner, Trump supporters are “non-thinking.” It’s a term Lewis used to describe young women voters, if I recall correctly. I, too, have been mystified by the stability of Trump’s support, given the serial disasters he has fomented for the country. If your whole world is the Dow-Jones average, perhaps there’s reason to be in the Trump corner, as it were, but for most people, who don’t have $500,000 stock portfolios, the wreckage he’ll leave behind when he leaves will take decades, perhaps a generation, to repair and heal.

    When a Trumpian says, “I like his policies…” it seems reasonable to me that we ask “Which policy, exactly, do you think is a good one?” “What makes it good?” “How is the nation / society / economy better off as a result of that policy?” I suspect what you’ll get in response is either the sound of crickets, or a John Birch Society-fueled rant about the evils of immigration (code for people of color) or socialism.

    Unless you’re speaking to a Native American, immigration complaints can be safely ignored as rankest hypocrisy, if not blatant racism, and – especially if you’re speaking to a heavily-subsidized farmer – complaints about “socialism” can be dismissed as sophistry. Farm subsidies, like corporate subsidies in other industrial areas, are just as much “socialism” as unemployment insurance.

    No corporate spokesperson or subsidized farmer should be allowed to finish a sentence criticizing “socialism” unless / until they’re willing to admit that they don’t really WANT a “free market.” They want a market that favors their particular industry or endeavor. A “free” market is what your local mom-and-pop restaurant has been faced with during the pandemic. Note carefully where the federal aid passed by Congress to help “small businesses” is being directed by corporate and Trump administration officials.

  4. Submitted by Edward Blaise on 05/26/2020 - 11:39 am.

    He is mentally incapable from being able to stop insulting any woman who challenges him in anyway. The best example is Michigan, a state he desperately needs to win in November.

    With MI having a female Governor Atty. General and Secretary of State, all with public approval exceeding Trump’s, he regularly goes out of his way to insult and threaten them.

    So much for the Women’s vote. On to Senior citizens:

    “Using his unique vocabulary, he dubbed the VA study a “Trump enemy.”

    “I’ve worked with doctors,” he said when asked after a lunch meeting with Senate Republicans why it is okay for him to take the drug despite warnings from the VA, Food and Drug Administration, and other federal health agencies.

    “They were giving it to people who were in very bad shape,” Mr Trump contended. “Almost dead.”

  5. Submitted by David Jamison on 05/26/2020 - 06:25 pm.

    800 people polled out of two to three million voters is like gauging how many fish are in a lake with a single fishing pole. The only numbers that will matter is on voting day.

    • Submitted by Paul Brandon on 05/28/2020 - 02:18 pm.

      A sample size of 800 would be typical for a well designed poll.
      The key is how the sampling is done. Simple random sampling would probably not be adequate — a well designed stratified sample the insured that the sample would be re[representative of the total population would be better.
      There’s a well established science behind this.

  6. Submitted by Dennis Wagner on 05/26/2020 - 06:31 pm.

    So, a bit off topic but: Here is the new scenario: Trump says stop wearing masks, ok, a great idea to separate the true Trump believers form us scientific types. So again, will all the Trumpies but their life on the line for the Trump? That would be 1 hell of a badge of loyalty, curious how many will rise to the challenge or wear a mask parading as a lefty! Not only that but now, in public you would have to not wear your badge of loyalty! Personally I think it is a win-win! No mask and the infection/death tolls disappear as Trump projects, I have learned that I should forget the science and start watching FOX news and connecting with the right wing conspiracy junkies, it doesn’t work and I will be reassured that following the science is the proper path! Of course there are a few glitches, as we know some of the Republican states are falsifying the numbers, but I suspect we will see a reasonable conclusion one way or the other. Any one else notice that it appears Trump has a gag order on Fauci? Hmmmmmmmm, just saying looking for that silver lining.

  7. Submitted by Paul Udstrand on 05/27/2020 - 09:38 am.

    Biden is turning out to be an even worse candidate that Clinton was. Given the problems with polling methods this is basically a dead heat. The fact that Biden doesn’t own this election already is downright frightening.

  8. Submitted by Carl Brookins on 05/31/2020 - 08:41 am.

    I have a possible answer to why some people still support Trump and the Republican Party. Its their lack of positive programs. Trump is all about negativism and conspiracy. Except for pushing bad judges and robbing most folks of their tax dollars to give to rich oligarchs, can you name a positive position offered by Republicans in Congress?

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