Trump Supporters: Beware of Misleading Polls

Dear Trump supporters,

A recent ABC/Washington Post poll of “registered voters” purports to show that Donald Trump lags 12 points behind Hillary Clinton in a national head-to-head contest. In case you’re inclined to accept this at face value—don’t.

First, this poll does indeed purport to gauge preferences nationally. Ultimately, what’s going to matter is how the candidates fare in the battleground states. For example, a Pew Poll from just last week showed Trump beating Clinton by two points in North Carolina (a state that Barack Obama won in 2008).

Secondly, it is June. The election isn’t until November.

Thirdly, this poll focuses on how “registered voters,” not likely voters, say they would vote if the election was held today. There are lots more registered voters than there are people who will actually come out to vote.

Fourthly, as the pollsters themselves admit, this poll is heavily stacked in favor of Democrats: the latter constitute 37% of registered voters while only 27% of Republicans count for the same.

Fifthly, ABC and the Post acknowledge that had they used the same party division numbers that they used in their poll from last month, Clinton would be up a full one-third less (8%) than this poll shows her leading now.

Sixthly (and isn’t this interesting?), a Wall Street/NBC News—a poll, that is, taken at the same time as the ABC/Post poll—shows Clinton with a five point lead in a national head-to-head matchup (46%-41%). However, when third party candidates Gary Johnson and Jill Stein are thrown into the mix, Clinton and Trump are in a virtual dead-heat with 39% and 38%, respectively.

The ABC/Post poll questioned 836 registered voters. The Wall Street/NBC poll questioned 1,000 such voters.

Both surveys were conducted during the week of June 19-23, a week during which Trump fired his campaign manager. And Trump’s had a bad June. Bill McInturff, a Republican pollster who conducted the Journal poll with Democrat Fred Yang, summed up their findings well: “Donald Trump has had the worst month one can imagine, but Clinton’s negatives are so high the net impact on the ballot is almost invisible.” Yang added: “The fact that Donald Trump had a really bad period and he went down just a few points indicates that it will be difficult for either candidate to break out given the hard-set division in the electorate.”

In other words, contrary to what ABC and the Washington Post would have us think, Clinton does not have a 12 point lead over Trump. This election isn’t close to coinciding with the impression that they’re working so hard at conveying.

Think about this: There are two polls of registered voters taken in the same period of time by well-known media outlets. The one proclaims that the Democrat nominee leads the Republican by twelve points. The other declares that her lead is only five points, but even then notes that with the third party candidates thrown into the mix, the two are tied!

And by the way, the NBC poll shows Trump leading Clinton with the much coveted “independent” vote by double digits.

Seventh, other than as a mechanism by which to manipulate voters into voting for those candidates that the pollsters and media favor, and other than as a means by which pollsters can earn a living and the media can increase their profits, there is absolutely no reason why anyone needs to learn five months in advance how a select sample of people claim they would vote in a hypothetical contest.

Five months is an eternity in politics—and these pollsters and “journalists” know it.

Eighthly, Trump brought millions of otherwise disenchanted people back into politics, and he garnered more votes in the GOP primaries than did any other Republican in American history. And yet now we are expected to believe that millions more have turned against him?!

This is crucial: Not only Trump, but his supporters, have not only been demonized by both the Democrat-friendly media and Republican NeverTrumpers; they have been the objects of physical intimidation and assault. It has become dangerous to be a Trump supporter. There is no such danger to being an Obama, a Clinton, or a Sanders supporter, for Republicans generally and Trump supporters specifically just don’t unleash violence upon those of their fellow Americans with whom they disagree. It doesn’t happen.

But as for left-wing thugs—not “protesters,” but cowardly, criminal punk-thugs—violence is the air that they breathe. And they’ve been visiting this violence upon attendees at Trump rallies and anyone else who they suspect of being a Trump backer.

It’s not at all implausible to think that many are fearful of expressing publicly their support for the Republican nominee. They may not necessarily fear being beaten up. But they most definitely fear for their livelihood, reputation, and property, for they know that once they admit that Donald Trump is their man, their opponents will seek to brand them as “racists” and “fascists.”

Finally, the polls found that Trump is losing to Clinton because while 90% of Democrats back their nominee, only 77% of Republicans are backing theirs.

The GOP NeverTrumpers, the very same folks who chastised Trump for his initial refusal last August to pledge to support the GOP nominee, could now imperil his victory because of their refusal to do the same.

If so; if their fantasy comes true and Trump loses, they should be mindful that the millions who back Trump will not forget. NeverTrump could very well give way to NeverGOP—and the neocon establishment Republicans will lose power for a generation.


A Citizen for Truth

Jack Kerwick received his doctoral degree in philosophy from Temple University. His area of specialization is ethics and political philosophy. He is a professor of philosophy at several colleges and universities in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

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