Pew: Trump Trails Hillary by Nine Points, Underperforming Romney Across Almost All Groups

Guy Benson
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Posted: Jul 08, 2016 3:45 PM
Pew: Trump Trails Hillary by Nine Points, Underperforming Romney Across Almost All Groups

What's most distressing about this new poll from Trump's perspective is not its top line result (Hillary +9), but its internals. The presumptive GOP nominee -- daily delegate revolt rumors notwithstanding -- holds a modest lead (+6) among men, but is getting crushed with women (-24), who make up the majority of the general electorate. Pay special attention to the data points on senior citizens and college-educated whites:

Mitt Romney won the 65+ crowd by a comfortable 12-point margin four years ago; Trump is statistically tied in that demographic against Hillary. The billionaire lags behind Clinton within every single education-based co-hort, too -- including those without college degrees. Of particular note is this item, via FiveThirtyEight:

While Trump is outperforming your run-of-the-mill Republican among whites without a college degree, he’s underperforming among white voters with a college degree. In fact, he is on a track to lose white college graduates. That’s really unusual for a Republican, and it means that among white voters overall, he’s probably not holding a winning hand. If you look at seven live interview polls taken since Trump wrapped up the nomination in May, he has trailed among whites with a college degree by an average of 6 percentage points...Trump’s performance is downright shocking from a historical perspective. Romney won whites with a college degree by 6 percentage points over Obama, according to the American National Elections Studies. In fact, the American National Elections Studies shows Republicans carrying that group in every election from 1956 to 2012.

The GOP presidential ticket hasn't lost that group in any election over the past 60 years.  The Washington Post has performed an analysis based on Pew's 2012 and 2016 survey data and concludes, "with nearly every demographic, Hillary Clinton is outperforming Barack Obama." Click through for the full infographic, but here's a taste of the biggest take-aways. The key word? Women:

White women with college degrees were about evenly split between Romney and Obama in June 2012, according to Pew's numbers. Now, Clinton leads Trump by 31 points. That's by far the biggest change since 2012, but it's by no means the only one. In most cases, demographic groups look more favorably at Clinton relative to Trump than they did at Obama relative to Romney. Women in particular are moving more to the left this year than they expressed to Pew four years ago. White women under the age of 50, for example, are 19 points more supportive of the Democrat than they were then. White women 50 and over are 15 points more supportive.

Practically the only demos shifting more towards Trump than Romney are older and less educated white men. That's fine, but running up the score among whites wasn't enough for Romney to beat Obama last cycle. And Trump is trailing Hillary with white women and college grads, groups the Republican ticket carried four years ago.  The Donald holds a nine-point advantage among whites generally in Pew's new poll; Romney won whites by 20 points.  And he lost, despite white voter turnout ticking up by several points over Ronald Reagan's 1980 romp (back when whites comprised a significantly larger share of the electorate).  There is some good news for Trump, including the perennial reality that voters really don't like Hillary Clinton.  In fact, most Americans say they're dissatisfied with their choices, with 41 percent saying it's difficult to choose between the two major candidates because both would be bad presidents.  What a year.  Also, this data was gathered before the FBI took a blowtorch to Hillary Clinton's many lies about her national security-endangering email misconduct.  Incidentally, RCP has Hillary ahead by roughly five points as I write this, an average that is held down by two Rasmussen polls showing Trump in the lead.  How credible are those outlier numbers?  I'll let you be the judge:

One addition, courtesy of Ed Morrissey: Pew's weighted partisan sample in this survey is D+5, which is entirely reasonable, given recent history.