Hillary Clinton took a hit in the polls this week as Donald Trump saw the Republican Party, and many of its voters, rally around him, but new numbers suggest that Clinton may have survived the worst of Trump’s post-nomination bump.
Trump suddenly and unexpectedly brought an end to the Republican primary earlier this month after winning the Indiana primary. To that point, both Ted Cruz and John Kasich appeared committed to fighting Trump all the way to the Republican National Convention, attempting to wrestle away the nomination if Trump failed to reach the threshold for an automatic win, but the Indiana primary led both Cruz and Kasich to drop out.
With his long battle now over, Trump has enjoyed nearly three weeks of mending fences within the party and focusing his attention solely on Hillary Clinton, and that showed this week with a series of polls that had him either statistically tied with Clinton or with a slight lead.
That bump may be over now. A New York Times/CBS News poll released Thursday showed that Hillary Clinton had regained the slim lead she enjoyed before Trump ended the primary. The poll showed Clinton ahead 47 percent to 41 percent, leading the real estate magnate even amid signs that Trump was enjoying the support of a party coming together around him.
“Eight in 10 Republican voters say their leaders should support Mr. Trump even if they disagree with him on important issues. And unfavorable views toward Mr. Trump among Republican voters have plummeted 15 percentage points since last month; 21 percent now express an unfavorable view of him, down from 36 percent in April.”
The poll does show some slipping for Hillary Clinton, who held a 10-point lead in the same poll last month. And a Fox News poll found that there are mixed signs for both Clinton and Trump. The poll showed that voters trusted Trump more on matters of the economy and Clinton on national security and nuclear weapons.
Other important areas were split, the poll found.
“Meanwhile, Clinton has the edge on social issues (+12 points), education (+10), foreign policy (+10), health care (+3), and immigration (+2).
“Trump is the candidate voters believe will do a better job ‘telling the truth to the American people’ (+15 points), managing tax dollars (+14 points), and restoring trust in government (+8 points).
“Trust of the candidates is about equal when it comes to using military force (Trump +1), nominating Supreme Court justices (Clinton +1), and ‘encouraging values you believe in’ (Clinton +2).”
But for Hillary Clinton, the polls likely come with a sigh of relief as Trump appeared to have momentum to surpass her. Many pundits expected Trump to receive a bump in support after ending what was an unusually contentious Republican primary, but there was doubt about how large it might be and how long it would last. If the New York Times/CBS News poll is an indication that it is already fading, it would be good news for Clinton.
And Hillary Clinton has her own bump in the polls still ahead. Even though Bernie Sanders is down by a nearly insurmountable margin, the Vermont Senator has vowed to remain in the primary and will be contesting the race until the final vote next month. When Sanders does finally concede the race to Clinton — and endorse her, as many expect him to do — it would lead to another jump for Clinton and allow her to fully focus on Donald Trump for the first time this election season.
[Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images]