Trump Leads Clinton By Five Points In New Poll, But Large Number Would Prefer A Third Candidate

Greg Hoadley

Donald Trump now leads former secretary of state Hillary Clinton by five points in a new Rasmussen Reports poll. It was the third poll in recent weeks that has shown him with a lead over the former Secretary of State.

The poll, commissioned by Rasmussen Reports, has Trump with 42 percent to 37 percent for Clinton. But 13 percent would prefer another candidate. Seven percent were undecided.


Rasmussen conducted the poll over May 17-18 and asked 1,000 voters the following question, "If the 2016 presidential election were held today, would you vote for Republican Donald Trump or Democrat Hillary Clinton?"

The poll has a three percent margin of error and a 95 percent level of confidence, according to Rasmussen.

The poll shows Trump increasing his lead over Clinton by an amount that is greater than the margin of error. On May 2, the previous Rasmussen poll had Trump ahead 41-39 percent, which was statistically insignificant (i.e., within the margin of error).

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Trump's lead in the poll did not take into account his announcement of judges he said he might name to the Supreme Court. The timing could bolster his support from the party's conservative base and counter the flow of articles claiming Trump is deceiving his supporters.


It also comes at a time when Trump has become the presumptive GOP nominee. Meanwhile, there is considerable friction among the Democrats. While Clinton maintains a substantial delegate lead over Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, the tenacious underdog from the Green Mountain state has nonetheless remained competitive, winning the Oregon primary and narrowly losing Kentucky on Tuesday, May 17. The Democrats also had a fractious Nevada convention on Sunday, with many Sanders supporters booing the outcome. Angry claims of election fraud are also pouring in from 31 Kentucky counties.


Among the poll's findings were the following items of interest.


Clinton Still Beating Trump In Most Polls

Even with these recent polls, however, Hillary Clinton still leads Donald Trump in most polling, maintaining a 3.3 percent lead in the Real Clear Politics average of polls. For instance, a Gravis poll has her leading Trump by two percent, while a Public Policy Polling poll gave Clinton a four-point lead, and CNN has Clinton beating Trump by 13 percent.

Clinton also leads Trump in most of the key battleground states where the election will be decided. For instance, Real Clear Politics shows her beating Trump in Florida by 4.3 percent, winning Ohio by 3 percent, and Pennsylvania by seven percent.


But perhaps most distressing for Trump are polls that show Clinton being competitive in what should be safe states for him. This includes Georgia, where Trump beats Clinton by 4.3 percent, and North Carolina, where Clinton leads by 3.3 percent. Clinton also leads Trump in Wisconsin by 11.5 percent. Wisconsin has 11 electoral votes, and Republicans were hoping to be competitive there.


What do you think? Can Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton?

[Photo by Matt Mills McKnight/Getty Images]