In a sharp turnaround in an already volatile election season, support for Hillary Clinton tumbled as Donald Trump made gains over the past month, leaving the race a virtual tie.
The latest IBD/TIPP Poll shows that Clinton is now ahead of Trump by just one percentage point, 44% to 43% among likely voters. Last month, Clinton had a seven-point lead over Trump — 46% to 39% — among registered voters.
Clinton and Trump are tied at 39% each in a four-way matchup that includes Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson, who gets 12% support, and Green Party candidate Jill Stein, who gets 3%.
As the election nears, IBD/TIPP is narrowing the horse-race results from registered to likely voters. This month’s survey included a total of 934 respondents, 887 of whom were registered voters and 861 were deemed likely voters. The margin of error for the horse-race results is +/‐3.4 percentage points. The IBD/TIPP Poll has been cited as the most accurate in the past three presidential elections.
It seems like just a month ago that “Hillary in a landslide!” was all the rage. People who make proclamations like that in August tend to be those who are professionally or personally invested in politics more than the majority of the American electorate. Out in Normalville, USA things don’t start heating up until around Labor Day.
Check your calendars.
Obviously, this can’t all be attributed to Johnson’s uptick, it’s just fun to point out that Hillary is still pretty vulnerable on all fronts. The media hoopla usually involves Trump because the partisan media has a sworn duty to attack the Republican nominee. We must never forget that Hillary Clinton isn’t well liked by anyone not on her payroll, however.
The people devoted to Donald Trump are genuinely devoted to him. The people devoted to Hillary all look twitchy and like they’re going to give themselves Silkwood showers as soon as they are out of sight.
Mrs. Bill’s handlers know that familiarity with her breeds nothing good (contempt would be at the mild end of the spectrum) and that is precisely why they so carefully manage her public appearances. At this point, we really have no proof that she isn’t just kept in a Mao jacket-shaped sarcophagus until needed for a brief turn at a fund raiser.
Much has been made about Gary Johnson’s attraction to angry Republicans who don’t want to vote for Trump. Again, that’s the Clinton-friendly media machine that keeps talking about that. What they desperately want everyone to not notice is that his laid-back stoner vibe and liberal social positions make him attractive to the Bernie supporters who still feel utterly disenfranchised by the Democratic party.
Mostly because the Democratic party utterly disenfranchised them, of course.
Even if Johnson doesn’t make it into the debate, he may still be able to siphon votes. If played properly, he could use his exclusion as an even bigger selling point to the disenfranchised crowd. It won’t make him win, but just think of the spoiler possibilities, especially with the aching Bernie crowd.
As we head into the 2016 homestretch there is more at play than cable news and social media would have us believe. The binary choice, despite the hard sell it is getting from those still on the Good Ship Grand Old Party, isn’t what it used to be. Disgruntlement abounds, and there is probably as much of it on the Democrat side of things as on the Republican, we’re just not hearing as much about it. That disgruntlement has to flow somewhere. It may be to Gary Johnson, or it may be to millions of sofas, making apathy the most influential third party candidate by election day.
The one thing that is certain right now is that nothing is certain. People should have learned months ago that the prediction game is a dangerous one in this strange cycle. Those who are dismissive of Trump’s chances seem to be suffering from some sort of amnesia and clinging to the ghosts of elections past. Everything has been thrown out of every window this year. The only prediction I’m willing to make is that I definitely will not be making any more predictions regarding this election.
Labor Day is nigh, and this race is still a race. Anybody who tells you differently is either wholly agenda-driven or, like Hillary Clinton, somewhat concussed.
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