It always amazes me how some politicians can lie so easily about objective facts that are available with just a few seconds of Googling, and how journalists, who have heard their lines again and again, never check and correct them. One of the worst examples is polling.
Trump trotted out polls again on Thursday night at the debate in Detroit to argue that he’s winning in the polls. As Ted Cruz said, Trump is obsessed with polls. But here’s why he shouldn’t be: All the polls show Trump losing to Clinton.
When called on it, Trump misleadingly stated, “I beat Hillary Clinton in many polls.” (Politico, in their story on the candidates arguing about polls, could have interjected with facts but didn’t and let Trump’s relatively inaccurate statement stand.)
Yes, Trump beats Hillary in some polls, but not “many”–unless you consider 5-out-of-49 to be many.
There’s actually a website where you can check these things: RealClearPolitics. RealClearPolitics includes summaries of all credible polls done this year and averages them. Of all the polls since May (link), Trump only led in five–five that he incessently cites (USA Today, 2/11-15; Fox News, 1/4-7; Fox News, 11/16-19; Fox News, 10/10-12; SurveyUSA, 9/2-3; two ties; not Quinnipac). That’s two polls from this year and three from Fox News.
Don’t take my word for it. Check at RealClearPolitics Clinton vs Trump polls. And yet Politico’s Michael Grunwald not let Trump’s claim stand, he even restated Trump’s straight-up lie that he’s leading in a Quinnipac poll.
How does he stack up against other Republicans? Other Republicans outperform him–in fact all other Republicans lead Hillary.
General Election: Republicans vs. Hillary (March 5, 2016)
|Candidate||RCP poll average (last 4 polls)||Link||John Kasich||+7.4 over Clinton||Kasich vs Clinton|
|Marco Rubio||+5.0 over Clinton||Rubio vs Clinton|
|Ted Cruz||+1.5 over Clinton||Cruz vs Clinton|
|Donald Trump||Clinton leads by 3.4||Trump vs Clinton|
Photo by Flickr user Marc Nozell (Creative Commons), modified by Mitchell Blatt.