Trump responded to internal polls showing him losing in every state that he must win in 2020 by firing his pollster.
But a person familiar with the inner workings of the Trump campaign shared more details of the data with NBC News, showing the president trailing across swing states seen as essential to his path to re-election and in Democratic-leaning states where Republicans have looked to gain traction. The polls also show Trump underperforming in reliably red states that haven’t been competitive for decades in presidential elections. A separate person close to the Trump re-election team told NBC News Saturday that the campaign will be cutting ties with some of its pollsters in response to the information leaks, although the person did not elaborate as to which pollsters would be let go.
In Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Florida and Michigan — three states where Trump edged Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton by narrow margins that proved decisive in his victory — Trump trails Biden by double-digits. In three of those states — Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Florida — Biden’s leads sit outside the poll’s margin of error. Trump is also behind the former vice president in Iowa by 7 points, in North Carolina by 8 points, in Virginia by 17 points, in Ohio by 1 point, in Georgia by 6 points, in Minnesota by 14 points, and in Maine by 15 points.
Any other incumbent who saw those poll numbers in must-win states would immediately reconsider their strategy and be looking for ways to improve. Donald Trump fired the pollster and called the polls fake. 2016 showed us all to never say that Trump can’t win, because, with the help of the Russians and some stumbles late by Hillary Clinton, Trump did win. It isn’t impossible for Trump to win a second term, but what these numbers show is that if Democrats don’t make a mistake or self-destruct, Trump is going to have a more difficult time winning in 2020 than he did in 2016.
Trump’s response to bad poll numbers is textbook losing candidate behavior. The country is looking eager to dump Trump, and instead of trying to sway voters, Trump is rejecting reality.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association