Analysis: Good News, Bad News for Trump in New CNN Poll

Posted: Jun 21, 2016 2:45 PM

The worst news for Donald Trump in CNN's new national survey is that he's trailing Hillary Clinton by five points head-to-head, and that he struggles immensely on a number of key candidate characteristic measures.  But his favorability (40/59) is only slightly worse than hers is (42/57), and despite his campaign suffering through a very rocky few weeks, Clinton is far from pulling away; in fact, this poll is much more competitive than CNN's outlier poll from April, in which she held a 13-point lead.  Mrs. Clinton may be regarded as the heavy favorite in this race, but these new numbers highlight just how drearily most people view the prospect of her victory in the fall:

Just 35 percent of registered voters say they'll feel "proud" if she wins the presidency, with fewer than three-in-ten saying they'll be "excited" (fully 70 percent said they would not be).  Trump fares worse across the board, with majorities agreeing that they'd be "embarrassed" and "afraid" if he wins in November.  That sort of sentiment presents a serious obstacle for him, especially when the same survey respondents give Clinton heavy edges on temperament, responsibility and judgment.  But he holds slight advantages on leadership and honesty, and is favored on the economy, terrorism and gun policy.  Clinton leads on immigration, foreign policy, women's issues, trade, judicial nominees and LGBT rights.  CNN's data reflects entrenched public disapproval of several recent tactics by the Trump campaign, including the candidate's racial attacks on the federal judge overseeing the Trump University fraud case ("inappropriate:" 83 percent), and the decision to strip media outlets of credentials as a form of retaliation for what Trump sees as biased coverage ("inappropriate:" 71 percent).  What's also obvious is that voters aren't buying Hillary Clinton's repeated lies about her improper email scheme that deliberately compromised top secret national security-related materials:

Americans know that her still-collapsing spin is false, as was categorically proven by the State Department Inspector General's devastating report last month.  People see the scandal and her response to it as a blot on her character, and relevant to her ability to serve as president.  As we've argued consistently, Hillary Clinton is ethnically unfit for the office to which she aspires.  That's why Clinton's jabs at Trump over accountability and transparency during today's economic speech were so rich and uncompelling.  Trump's brutal June has eroded his standing and revealed serious, endemic problems within his campaign.  But Clinton hasn't been able to deliver a knockout blow;  according to Quinnipiac, she's added to her lead in Florida, but remains virtually tied in Ohio and Pennsylvania.  Her own enduring flaws continue to keep this race more or less competitive.  Trump should be thankful.   And because Hillary took great pains this afternoon to praise the sputtering, uneven Obama recovery, I'll leave you with RNC-culled video of Obama's Federal Reserve Chairwoman painting a decidedly less impressive picture of the the US economy:

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