In an interview with Fox Business Network broadcast on Wednesday, Hogan Gidley, the press secretary of President Donald Trump’s re-election campaign, dismissed opinion polling as “junk,” The Hill reported.
Speaking with Mornings with Maria anchor Dagen McDowell, Gidley brushed off former Vice President Joe Biden’s lead, saying that “a lot of those polls are junk.”
After McDowell described the response as a “cop-out,” he suggested that polling agencies deliberately under-sample Republican voters.
“It’s not a cop-out where the numbers bear out the fact that 10 percent more Democrats are surveyed in these polls than there were in 2016,” he said.
“That’s just sheer mathematics. I can’t change that. So they are skewed to the left for sure.”
As The Hill noted, in recent days, Trump and his allies have been railing against surveys, arguing that most of them don’t match 2016 exit polls and underestimate Trump’s support.
With less than 100 days until the election, the incumbent is trailing the Democratic Party’s presumptive presidential nominee nationwide and in key swing states.
In the RealClearPolitics average of polling data, Trump is 8.8 percentage points behind Biden. The former vice president is also ahead in the battleground states of Pennsylvania, Florida, Michigan, Wisconsin, North Carolina and Arizona.
As newly appointed Trump campaign manager Bill Stepien recently explained, the campaign’s primary goal is to “protect” the states Republicans won in 2016 and beat Biden in at least one battleground state in the industrial Midwest.
But Trump is also trailing Biden on key issues.
In a Fox News survey released earlier this month, 43 percent of respondents said that they approve of the way the commander-in-chief has handled the coronavirus pandemic. In comparison, Dr. Anthony Fauci’s approval rating was 73 percent.
Notably, the survey also showed that voters believe Biden would do a better job handling the federal government’s response to COVID-19 than Trump.
With public opinion moving against him, Trump has apparently decided to change his approach to the virus, encouraging his supporters to wear masks and practice social distancing. The president has also canceled the Republican National Committee’s activities in Florida, citing concerns over public health.
When asked about the apparent change in Trump’s tone, Gidley took a shot at Biden, arguing that the Trump has “been talking about the safety and security of the American people from day one.”
“It was Joe Biden who said go out and party, everything’s fine and called us xenophobic for shutting down travel into this country to protect and save lives,” he said.