Sunday, September 27, 2015

Post #9:
The week of September 19 through 25.

GOP: The elephant in the room for poll watchers is "Have we seen Peak Trump?" I get my polls from two sources, the left leaning Pollster, run by Huffington Post, and the right-leaning Real Clear Politics website. If you click on either of their links, their view is that Peak Trump has happened in the past week or so, but my calculations using all the polls from both sites is that Peak Trump happened early this month. Our differing viewpoints have to do with three things.

1) Different sets of polls
2) Different weighting of polls
3) Once a week averages vs. running averages

No matter how you slice it, all three of us agree that The Trump Slump has begun, though it should be noticed he is still in first place by a comfortable margin, for now. We will discuss Trump's Deflategate as a separate topic with its own graphic soon. Here are a few other points worth mentioning first.

1. The GOP base is still hating politicians. Trump is waning and Carson's just about flat this week, but Carly Fiorina continues her surge and gets slightly above both JeB Bush and None of the Above. The totals right now are:

Non-politicians: 52.4%
Politicians: 36.7%
None of the Above: 9.9%

2. Walker is gone and nobody cares. Or do they? Scott Walker left before his campaign went into debt, just like Rick Perry. I wonder if the big ticket donors are now asking for itemized receipts? With Walker gone, the Koch Brothers are left without their first choice, and they have a lot of money to throw around. Who will get the lion's share and what positions will they have to "modify" to get the cash?

3. The None of the Above mini-surge: There are two best explanations for a rise in the average of None of the Above. The first is lazy polling and the second is that voters who have become disenchanted with the choice from early September haven't quite made up their minds as to who choice number two is.

4. JeB Bush is still much worse than Mitt ever was: JeB Bush has been just barely below None of eh Above for two straight weeks and even worse, he is the fourth most popular candidate right now. Mitt Romney never have more than one candidate above him in the national polls. There's a mini-trend that might make things even worse next week. JeB Bush is in jeopardy of becoming just a dotted line or even disappearing.
The slope graph of the Trump Slump: Again, let me note that Donald Trump is still in first place in the poll averages by more than ten percentage points. More than that, in 2012 there were plenty of candidates who had a few bad weeks then climbed back. But if we look at who has gained significantly from his peak early this month, here are the numbers. (Note: the positive moves add up to a lot more than Trump's shrinkage, but we aren't including other candidate's lost votes, notably the dropouts Rick Perry and Scott Walker.)

Trump: Down from 33.5% to 26.5%, 7 points lost
Fiorina: Up from 3.3% to 9.9%, 6.6 points gained
Carson: Up from 13.3% to 16.0%, 2.7 points gained

Rubio: Up from 5.3% to 7.9%, 2.6 points gained
None of the Above: 8.0% to 9.9%, 1.9 points gained

I've discussed None of the Above and the non-politicians already, but Marco Rubio is the guy below the radar that might just make Jeb Bush's live even more miserable soon. He's now saying there would be no path to citizenship ever in a Rubio administration, but I don't don't know how the red meat xenophobes are going to feel about this. Nate Silver believes Rubio is the eventual nominee, but I think the months of vitriol are going to give Ted Cruz the edge in the long run. While we disagree on many topics, Silver and I are both serious poll watchers and we've both given up on JeBush Bush. I never truly gave up on Romney for the nomination in 2012.   

Dems: Yes, it's a Hillary slump. She's still in first place and it's a slow leak, unlike the plummet of Donald Trump right now.  The only predictable things that can change things in a big way are the five way debate on October 13 or a definitive statement by Joe Biden, and I fully expect him to do what he has been saying, though not completely officially.

I don't think Biden will run.

Back next week with new numbers.

1 comment:

  1. I think the decline of Boehner is revealing a bunch of fault lines. Rand Paul seems to be pulling out. Ted Cruz seemingly alienated everyone in his caucus, and it takes a very weird twisted idea to figure how he winds up being nominated in that environment.

    I'm saying it's Kasich's to win...