The latest Ipsos/Reuters poll brings more good news for Hillary Clinton with a solid six-point lead over Donald Trump. This national tracking poll shows likely voters preferring Clinton over Trump 44 percent to 38 percent.
Even a four-way match-up nibbled only slightly into Clinton’s lead: She won 42 percent to Trump’s 38 percent, with 7 percent for Libertarian Party’s Gary Johnson and 2 percent for the Green Party’s Jill Stein. And as the graphics from the tweet below show, Hillary’s lead gets even better with likely voters polled who are actually registered.
#NEW National @Reuters/Ipsos Poll:
Clinton 42 (+4)
Clinton 42 (+7)
Stein 4 pic.twitter.com/faaXrPTaNL
— Political Polls (@PpollingNumbers) September 28, 2016
This is a big improvement over last week’s dismal Ipsos/Reuters national tracking poll from Sept. 22. That had the GOP and Democratic candidates tied at 39 percent in a two-way match up. Throwing Johnson and Stein into the mix made things even more grim for Hillary Clinton and her supporters by handing Donald Trump Trump a two-point lead.
This latest Ipsos/Reuters tracking poll was taken online with 1,041 likely voters on Sept. 22-26. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.5 percent. Their numbers echo other polls that show a post-debate bump for Hillary Clinton due to her strong performance. A POLITICO-Morning Consult poll from Wednesday also shows Hillary Clinton ahead by slimmer but still hopeful 3 points. Likewise, a Meredith College poll of swing states show Clinton leading Trump 38 percent to 35 percent.
As usual, Hillary Clinton polls best with ethnic, urban, and non-Christian voters, while white, rural, and evangelical Christians are more likely to go for Donald Trump. Here’s a screen shot with the demographic breakdowns from the POLITICO/Morning Consult poll.
…But here’s the bad news for Hillary Clinton.
Unfortunately, what the polls giveth, they also taketh away. Although Hillary Clinton’s lead over Donald Trump has widened, both candidates’ numbers are down. Talking Point Memo‘s interactive PollTracker gathers information from the various major polls and calculates the average.
Part of the reason Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are running neck-in-neck is because both are among the least-liked set of candidates in recent memory.
— Nick Worth (@Xtremefaith) September 27, 2016
And as the graph below shows — with the likeability ratings for all of our presidential elections since 1980 — our visceral dislike for Clinton and Trump isn’t just because of polarization between their political parties.
— Natalie Holme Elsberg (@NatalieElsberg) May 5, 2016
As FiveThirtyEight reported back in May:
‘Part of the negativity voters feel toward Clinton and Trump probably has something to do with growing political polarization in our country. But polarization doesn’t explain everything. If Trump and Clinton’s strongly unfavorable ratings were simply a byproduct of polarized politics, you’d expect them to have high “strongly favorable” ratings too. They don’t. You can see this in their net strong favorability ratings (the “strongly favorable” rating minus the “strongly unfavorable” rating).’
In other words, even within Hillary Clinton’s and Donald Trump’s political parties, the “strongly favorable” ratings aren’t numerous enough to cancel out some of those “strongly unfavorable” ratings.