LUNCHTIME POLITICS: Debate Analysis – Alabama Senate – Favorability Ratings – Assault Accusation

Your Daily Polling Update for Thursday, June 27, 2019

Down 1 from yesterday

RON’S COMMENT: Today’s average is based on five polls, ranging from 41% (Reuters) to 50% (Rasmussen). Without these two extremes, it would be 43%…. President Trump’s disapproval rating averages 51% today (same as yesterday), which is 7 points higher than his approval rating.

By Ron Faucheux

Five comments about last night’s Democratic debate: 

  1. The energy was clearly on the progressive-populist-left side of the political spectrum. There was little interest in bipartisanship or centrist policies. In fact, candidates who tried to deliver more moderate messages (especially Delaney and, to a lesser extent, O’Rourke and Klobuchar) were either ignored or challenged.
  2. While no one went after frontrunner Joe Biden––who was not there to defend himself––two candidates positioned themselves to go after his voters. Cory Booker went right at the party’s large African American constituency and Julian Castro did the same with Hispanic voters. Biden has been polling very well with both groups. 
  3. In terms of poll standings, Elizabeth Warren was the strongest candidate on the stage, and she showed that she can present her campaign theme better than any candidate. She dominated the first half of the debate. While she faded somewhat as the evening went on, she was able to stay out of squabbles––for better or worse––with other candidates.
  4. There was a sub-debate going on between the two candidates from Texas, Julian Castro and Beto O’Rourke. They tangled on immigration, much to Castro’s advantage.
  5. O’Rourke took the most hits. Both Castro and de Blasio were able to put him on the defensive.  

Here are the candidates who helped themselves to some degree last night:

  • Elizabeth Warren: Delivered her central message better than any candidate and had the confident demeanor of a frontrunner.
  • Julian Castro: Strong debater and capable communicator on a national stage. 
  • Cory Booker: Appealing, motivating and able to explain issues in human terms.
  • Tulsi Gabbard: Calm, telegenic presence––along with her positioning as the foreign policy and national defense candidate––set her apart.
  • Amy Klobuchar: A few good moments, although she missed opportunities to better distinguish herself. No clear theme.
  • Bill de Blasio: Has the highest negative ratings of any Democratic candidate and probably did little last night to erase those negatives. But, like him or not, he proved to be an aggressive, articulate champion of the far left­­. His performance reminded us how he got elected mayor of New York twice by large margins.

Among Republican primary voters statewide

Republican primary
Tommy Tuberville 29% 
Bradley Byrne 21% 
Roy Moore 13% 
John Merrill 12% 
Arnold Mooney 2%
RON’S COMMENT: This is a battle to pick the GOP Senate nominee to take on Alabama’s Democratic Sen. Doug Jones…. This primary poll shows Moore––who lost the last special election after a raucous campaign––running third behind Tuberville, a former college football coach (Ole Miss, Auburn, Texas Tech and Univ. of Cincinnati), and U.S. Rep. Byrne…. Many GOP leaders fear that Moore’s nomination would lead to a Democratic victory in the general election. This will be a well-watched race.

Among voters nationwide

% = Favorable/Unfavorable
Donald Trump: 46%/52%
Mike Pence: 45%/46%
Nancy Pelosi: 43%/50%
Chuck Schumer: 36%/45%
Kevin McCarthy: 24%/33%
Mitch McConnell: 29%/53%
RON’S COMMENT: Democratic voters like their Congressional leaders much better than Republican voters like theirs: GOP Senate leader McConnell’s rating among fellow Republicans is 48% favorable/31% unfavorable and GOP House leader McCarthy’s rating among fellow Republicans is 32% favorable/25% unfavorable…. Democratic Senate leader Schumer’s rating among fellow Democrats is 57% favorable/20% unfavorable and Democratic House Speaker Pelosi’s rating among fellow Democrats is 72% favorable/17% unfavorable.

Among voters nationwide

A woman has accused Donald Trump of sexually assaulting her in a New York department store in the mid 1990s. From what you know now, do you think he did it or not? 
Definitely/probably did it: 47%
Definitely/probably did not do it: 32% 
Not sure: 21%
RON’S COMMENT: 76% of Democrats and 16% of Republicans say Trump definitely or probably sexually assaulted the woman in a New York department store in the mid 1990s.

Presidential job rating average based on recent nationwide polls.
ALABAMA: Change Research, June 19-24
When poll results add up to more than 100%, it is usually due to rounding.
L = Libertarian candidate 
G = Green Party candidate 
Ind = independent candidate
O = Other candidate(s)
D poll = conducted by or for organizations generally associated with Democrats.
R poll = conducted by or for organizations generally associated with Republicans.

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