Donald Trump Polls Against Hillary Clinton Show He Is Within Striking Distance Of Presidency

If the trend in Donald Trump polls is accurate, the New York real estate mogul may be relocating from Manhattan's Trump Tower to the White House after the November 2016 general election.

Polling data this far from an election should be taken with a grain salt, plus some surveys use more reliable methodology than others, while certain public opinion organizations may have a financial or ideological interest in arriving at a particular outcome.

Parenthetically, who would willingly reveal sensitive information such as a presidential vote to a stranger over the telephone?

That being said, according to most pundits, right-leaning voters, including many Independents, despite their possible misgivings and past support of other candidates, are gravitating to Donald Trump, who himself is a former Democrat and Independent.

"Trump's recent bump coincides with a growing sense of acceptance among Republican establishment figures. From former primary opponents to elected officials on Capitol Hill, the GOP is broadly warming to its likely standard-bearer," CNN asserted.

Political fortunes can change on a dime, as it were, though.

To borrow a WWE analogy, perhaps what's going on now is along the lines of when a "heel" wins a pro wrestling title belt and suddenly that person gains stature from the fans.

Last week, the GOP presumptive nominee got some good news in polling data from Fox News and Rasmussen, which showed him with momentum against his chief rival. In the former survey, Trump leads Democrat front-runner Hillary Clinton by a margin of 45 percent to 42 percent although both candidates have persistently high negatives. Rasmussen found that Trump has a five-point lead over Clinton, 42 percent to 37 percent.

About two weeks ago, a Qunnipiac University poll claimed that Trump was surging in the all important swing states of Florida, Ohio, and Pennsylvania against Clinton. Swing (or battleground) states are those that are up for grabs in the general election for both parties.

It remains to be seen if these polls (or the newer ones) are outliers, given that they run counter to the conventional wisdom about the November election.

On his way to vanquishing 16 rivals in the Republican primary season (and putting an end to all the brokered convention media speculation), Trump has all along defied predictions that his campaign would implode or flame out, however, given his various controversial statements and unconventional campaigning style.

Other polls include a Washington Post-ABC News poll published yesterday gave Trump a narrow lead over Clinton by 46 percent to 44 percent among registered voters (different from likely voters), making the election a virtual tie when the 3.5 percent margin of error is included in the calculation. "That represents an 11-point shift toward the presumptive Republican nominee since March," the Post noted, adding that both candidates are viewed unfavorably by large segments of the electorate. As alluded to above, most polls have found that both leading candidates are very unpopular with voters.

An NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released yesterday showed that Hillary Clinton's margin over Donald Trump with registered voters shrunk to three points (from 46 percent to 43 percent) with a 3.1 percent margin of error. "In April, Clinton held an 11-point advantage over Trump, 50 percent to 39 percent, and had led him consistently by double digits since December," NBC News explained about the numbers, which it described as a "dead heat" general election.

"Just 66 percent of Democratic primary voters preferring Sanders support Clinton in a matchup against Trump," NBC News added.

The Real Clear Politics average, which Business Insider deemed the "gold standard," gives Trump a tiny 0.2 percent lead over Clinton. "Together the polls displayed a growing subset of both self-identified liberal and independent voters who are straying from Clinton in a matchup against the presumptive Republican nominee, while Trump is consolidating support among the GOP establishment."
Trump foe Karl Rove, the "architect" Of George W. Bush's two presidential election victories, has conceded that the #neverTrump movement has run out steam.

While Trump has many challenges ahead, including that Independents could jump ship and move to Hillary's column, "Look for Trump to have more good news this week with the Washington State primary, more good polls (now from battleground states), further news of his party's consolidation and more speculation about vice presidential possibilities. Meanwhile, Clinton will suffer more bad coverage about her joyless campaign, the increasing rancor of Bernie's Brigades. and the deepening split in the Democratic Party," Rove wrote today.

As far as consolidation is concerned as it relates to GOP insiders, the New York Times and Politico came up with sharply different perspectives.

"A powerful array of the Republican Party's largest financial backers remains deeply resistant to Donald J. Trump's presidential candidacy, forming a wall of opposition that could make it exceedingly difficult for him to meet his goal of raising $1 billion before the November election," the Times claimed.

Politico apparently found the opposite to be happening. "The Never Trump moment is over. While a small group of Republicans has wrung its hands raw over the choice between the GOP's nominee and Hillary Clinton, the party's firmament – social and intellectual conservatives, the lobbyist and donor class, powerful operatives and outside groups – is increasingly getting in line behind Donald Trump. Never mind that many of them complain about his bombastic and unpredictable political style. The thawing has slowly but surely begun -- and it's visible everywhere..."

Who do you think will be elected U.S. president in November: Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton (assuming they are the major party candidates)?

[Photo by Mel Evans/AP]