Hillary Clinton Vs. Donald Trump Polls: With Clinton Back In The Lead, Questions Arise Over Whether The ‘Reuters’/Ipsos Methodology Change Favors Clinton

Republican nominee for president of the United States Donald Trump has lost support among likely voters against Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, according to a Reuters/Ipsos poll that was released earlier today by Reuters. The poll, which was conducted from July 25-29 and included 1,043 likely voters, had a margin of error of four percentage points. It was taken over the course of the Democratic National Convention, so only some of the participants had seen Clinton’s speech prior to completing the poll.

“Nearly 41 percent of likely voters favor Clinton, 35 percent favor Trump, and 25 percent picked “Other,” according to the new July 25-29 online poll of 1,043 likely voters, which overlapped with the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. The poll has a credibility interval of 4 percentage points.”

While Clinton and Trump have been close in other polls over the past few months, Clinton has consistently held a strong lead in the Reuters/Ipsos poll. Following Trump’s comments regarding Islam and guns after the shooting at Pulse, an LGBT club in Orlando, Florida, Clinton’s lead increased to double digits.

Hillary Clinton Polls
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Over the course of the next few weeks, Trump slowly began chipping away at the lead. While Clinton remained ahead, likely voters started to lose trust in her after the email scandal. While the FBI cleared her of any criminal wrongdoings, they still said she was incompetent and extremely careless with sensitive information. For someone that is in the running to be the next president, the word “careless” is not something that voters want to hear.

While many potential voters are terrified at the idea of Trump becoming the next president, he had a strong Republican National Convention. As the Inquisitr reported, Trump held a two-point lead in the Reuters/Ipsos poll that was conducted from July 22-26. Since the margin of error was four percentage points, Clinton and Trump were still viewed as even.

Today’s poll results show that Clinton has a six-point lead, which falls outside of the credibility interval of four percentage points. Clinton is ahead at this point, and it is likely that she received a boost of her own from the Democratic National Convention. Regardless, Reuters announced that the methodology was changed slightly for this poll. Formally, participants were given the option of selecting “Neither/Other.” Since many participants do not prefer Clinton or Trump, they were selecting the “Neither/Other” option, which Reuters thinks led to underreporting. The option has since been changed to “Other.”

“The presidential tracking poll reflects a slight change of wording from previous surveys, replacing the “Neither/Other” option given to respondents with just “Other.” An internal review had found the word “Neither” has, at times, siphoned support away from one or the other candidate.”

While Reuters says that the word “Neither” affected both candidates, Breitbart believes the change may have been put in place to favor Clinton.

“The real problem this year’s polling presents to Democrats is the reluctance, especially among more educated voters, to confess their support of Trump. Other pollsters have noted the divergence between polls conducted with live operators and robo-phone calls. Live operators have long been considered the preferred, most accurate method inside the polling community. However, live operator polls uniformly show lower support for Trump than online or automatic-dial phone polls. Much has been made of Trump’s lack of support among college-educated whites, a stronghold of Republican support, but it could very well be that these people, susceptible to social perceptions, have not abandoned the Republican nominee but are giving the socially acceptable answer–until they are alone in the voting booth.”

With Trump being probably the most controversial presidential candidate ever, many people are worried about the backlash from publicly stating that they support him. It is thought that many potential voters are even reluctant to admit to an operator over the phone that they support Trump. Trump has routinely been referred to as a “racist” and “bigot” over the past year, so it makes sense that his supporters would prefer to avoid the stigma.

Donald Trump Polls
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Regardless, the latest Reuters/Ipsos poll was conducted online, as opposed to over the phone, so the stigma of admitting support for Trump was not likely present. As Breitbart noted, Trump has had better results in online polls anyway, so it is unlikely the new methodology affected this particular poll.

With a little over three months until the election, the poll results between Republican nominee for president of the United States Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton are going to be interesting. Since voters may be reluctant to admit they like Trump, it may not be until November that we truly find out which candidate America prefers.

[Photo by Joshua Lott/Getty Images]