A new ABC News/Washington Post poll shows a close contest in presidential election preferences, with Republicans lining up behind Donald Trump as their party’s presumptive nominee while the continued Democratic race is keeping Hillary Clinton’s side more unsettled.
Greater voter registration among Republicans is one factor: Clinton’s 6-point lead among all adults, 48-42 percent in a general election matchup, switches to essentially a dead heat among registered voters, 46 percent for Trump, 44 percent for Clinton. Regardless, the contest has tightened considerably since March, when Clinton led among registered voters by 9 points.
From the poll Trump leads:
Men: Trump 56-34%
Independents: Trump 48-35%
No degree: Trump 52-38%
Whites: Trump 57-33%
Hillary lost 13 points with independents in one month.
Trump’s enhanced competitiveness reflects consolidation in his support since his primary opponents dropped out, and it comes despite significant challenges to his candidacy. Fifty-eight percent of Americans call him unqualified to be president, 60 percent see him unfavorably overall, 76 percent think he doesn’t show enough respect for those he disagrees with and 64 percent say he should release his tax returns (with most feeling strongly about it). These include majorities of registered voters on each item, representing opportunities for Clinton.
Republicans and Republican-leaning independents, moreover, split 46-46 percent on whether or not Trump represents the core values of the party. That’s sharply improved from 29-56 percent in July, but it leaves the party still divided on a key measure of Trump’s suitability.
Clinton has challenges of her own –- 53 percent of Americans (and 57 percent of registered voters) see her unfavorably, making this a matchup between the two most unpopular likely presidential candidates in the history of ABC/Post election polls, dating back to 1984.
Trump groups in ABC/Post poll:
Men: Trump 56-34%
Inds: Trump 48-35%
No grad: Trump 52-38%
Whites: Trump 57-33%https://t.co/sDANHraDVe
— Ryan Struyk (@ryanstruyk) May 22, 2016