In an apparent echo of 2016, recent polling has caused many Democrats and media pundits to grow exceedingly confident about presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden’s chances of defeating President Donald Trump this fall.
But at least one pollster is tapping the breaks, as a recent analysis of survey data shows that the race is actually far tighter than it appears, and Trump retains a substantial lead among so-called “swing voters” who defected from the Democrats to support Trump in 2016, the Washington Examiner reported.
Those “swing voters” are largely white Americans living in the Midwest and the Rust Belt who voted for President Barack Obama in 2012 but switched sides to vote for President Trump in 2016, and Trump reportedly 3–1 advantage over Biden within that subset that numbers roughly 6 million total voters.
Poll: Trump retains key support
The latest poll from Zogby Analytics was conducted between July 21-23, was comprised of 1,516 likely voters, and had a margin of error of 2.5%. Overall, the poll showed Biden leading Trump 44% to 40% nationally with 7% split among third-party candidates and 9% remaining undecided.
The demographic breakdown of the poll results is where things get interesting, however, and there is some promising news for President Trump in there that prompted pollster John Zogby to declare that, “Trump is not down for the count yet.”
First and foremost, Zogby took note of the nearly 6 million swing voters who switched from Obama to Trump, voters that Biden desperately needs to win back to earn the White House. Among those voters, Trump leads Biden by a margin of 65% to 21%.
Trump also — quite predictably — is prevailing over Biden among consumers such as Amazon and Walmart shoppers as well as with NASCAR fans and rural voters.
Quite surprisingly, though, Trump is also edging out Biden among urban men (47% to 40%) and urban parents (52% to 34%), perhaps in part because of his strong stance on restoring law and order in cities plagued by unrest and his firm embrace of school choice as a civil rights issue.
As for Biden, he still holds a lead among large city voters and suburban voters, particularly suburban moms and parents in general, according to the survey. That said, Trump’s recent attacks on potential Biden administration plans to urbanize the suburbs could easily cut into that lead and possibly even surpass it in the coming months.
The one area where Biden is performing exceptionally well is among voters age 18 to 29 (49% to 20%), while Trump leads overall among all voters older than 30 (45% to 42%). The problem with that, though, as the Examiner noted, is that on average, fewer than half of those young voters will actually show up to the polls, whereas older voters are far more reliable come Election Day.
“While swing voters are going to play an important role in the November presidential election, they are not the only factor associated with how the presidential election will be won by either Joe Biden or Donald Trump,” Zogby said in his analysis.
“For Biden, this means banking on youth discontentment and hoping the anger in the streets of cities across the nation will translate into a big voter turnout for the Democrats,” he added. “For Trump, it means hoping swing voters stay in his column and he improves his performance with suburban voters. Both scenarios are easier said than done for each candidate.”