Poll: Clinton Is Winning Over Swing Voters With Her Answers on Benghazi

Matt Vespa
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Posted: Nov 03, 2015 6:58 PM
Poll: Clinton Is Winning Over Swing Voters With Her Answers on Benghazi

Please go back and read Guy’s post about how the recent email dump contradicts Hillary Clinton’s 11-hour testimony in front of the House Select Committee on Benghazi. Her October 22 appearance was one of many “wins” the Clinton campaign saw after a rather stellar month, given that pretty much the entire summer she was slammed over the use of her private email system while serving as secretary of state. It sunk her approval ratings to record lows, her support among women and black Democrats dropped by double-digits, and Americans weren’t satisfied with her answers–until now. A new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll shows that swing voters are accepting Clinton’s answers on Benghazi:

The number of people who are unsatisfied with her response to questions on the attacks on a U.S. diplomatic compound dropped to 38% in the poll, from 44% in a poll taken before she testified before the House Select Committee on Benghazi on Oct. 22.The new poll found Republicans’ opinion remained largely unchanged, but among Democrats and swing voters, there was a significant rise in satisfaction with Mrs. Clinton’s response.

[…]

In the Journal/NBC poll taken before the House hearing, 27% said they were satisfied with Mrs. Clinton’s response to questions about the attack, and 44% said they were not satisfied, with Republicans far more likely than Democrats to be unsatisfied.

The new poll conducted after the House hearing found the share of Democratic primary voters who were satisfied with Mrs. Clinton’s response rose to 72%, from 58%. The impact was not just among diehard partisans: Among people identified as swing voters, satisfaction jumped to 23% from 6%, while dissatisfaction dropped from 84% to 40%.

Yet, there is a silver lining to all of this (I guess): Clinton’s numbers on honesty haven’t improved:

However, that shift did not have much impact on voters’ more general assessment of Mrs. Clinton’s honesty and character: A broader set of questions about her professional and personal attributes found that just 27% of voters rated her highly on being honest and straightforward — roughly the same as in the earlier poll.

I’m sure Team Clinton will find a way to make it seem somewhat palatable since they’re shameless, but as commentators have noted before, it’s a hard for someone to run as a strong leader, with the skills necessary to be president and affect change, while also being viewed as totally lacking the ability to tell the truth. If this is a winning formula for winning elections, talk about an endorsement of Machiavellianism in American politics; the Clintons know these methods well. On the other hand, if we do see a Clinton presidency come January 2017, I’m sure we’ll see plenty of commentary about whether the Republican Party should remain in the business of politics from conservatives.

In all, the fact that Democrats and swing voters are finding her answers on Benghazi satisfying only reinforces the notion that the Clintons, in the words of National Review’s Kevin Williamson–are indeed “the penicillin-resistant syphilis of American politics.”