Latest USA Voting Intention
(August 25-26)

August 28, 2020
R&WS Research Team
Approval Rating | Donald Trump | Joe Biden | Kamala Harris | US Presidential Election 2020 | Voting Intention

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Redfield & Wilton Strategies’ latest weekly voting intention poll for the US Presidential Election finds Joe Biden leading Donald Trump by 10%, which represents no change compared to last week [1]. These results suggest that the Biden campaign has maintained its lead, despite the attention surrounding this week’s Republican National Convention. Altogether, our latest results are as follows:

Joseph R. Biden (Democrat) 49% (-)

Donald J. Trump (Republican) 39% (-)

Jo Jorgensen (Libertarian) 2% (+1)

Howie Hawkins (Green) 1% (-)

Other (Another Third Party / Write In) 1% (-)

Don’t Know 9% (-)

Likelihood to vote decreased slightly in the past week. At this stage, 64% of respondents say they will certainly vote, compared to 66% last week. Nonetheless, likelihood to vote remains very similar between the likely voters of both candidates: 75% of likely Trump voters and 76% of likely Biden voters say they are certain they vote. A 1% difference in likelihood to vote between the two candidates supporters falls within the margin of error of the poll.

The Enthusiasm Gap

This week, there was a noticeable increase in the proportion of likely Trump voters who say they feel “very enthusiastic” about voting for Trump, with the proportion rising from 56% last week to 62% this week. In our polling two weeks ago, 63% of likely Trump voters were “very enthusiastic” about voting for him, which suggests that the drop in enthusiasm reported in our poll last week was most likely an anomalous result. Meanwhile, the proportion of likely Biden voters who say they feel “very enthusiastic” about voting for Biden increased slightly from 49% last week to a majority of 51% this week, which is part of a trend of growing enthusiasm for Biden among his supporters in recent weeks.

For the third week in a row, a greater proportion of likely Biden voters say they will vote for the Democratic candidate primarily because they support him (56%) rather than because they oppose Trump (44%). Our result this week provides confirmation that Biden is successfully generating more and more enthusiasm for his own candidacy, although it remains to be seen whether his campaign can maintain this level of enthusiasm all the way to the November election, or even raise it to levels as high as those found among likely Trump voters.

It is possible that Biden’s selection of Kamala Harris as his Vice Presidential nominee could partly explain the increased enthusiasm among likely Biden voters. A majority (54%) of likely Biden voters say they are more likely to vote for the Democratic ticket following the selection of Kamala Harris, and only 2% of likely Biden voters say they are less likely to vote for the Democratic ticket following Harris’ selection. Notably, while 14% of likely Trump voters are more likely to vote for the Democrats now that Harris is on the ticket, a majority (52%) say they are less likely.

The same proportion of Trump supporters this week (81%) as last week (81%) say they are voting for Trump primarily because they support him, rather than because they oppose Biden. Overall, although enthusiasm for Biden among his supporters has risen, the President continues to be seen by the overwhelming majority of his likely voters as their top choice, highlighting the loyalty of his base

The public continue to think that Biden is most likely to win the election in November: at this stage 37% believe that Biden is more likely to win, whereas 34% think Trump is more likely to win. Nevertheless, the gap has narrowed compared to last week’s result, when 40% thought Biden was most likely to win and 31% believed Trump was most likely to win. A fortnight ago, 38% of the US public believed Biden was likely to win, while 36% considered Trump to be the favourite. Ultimately, Biden’s significant lead over Trump last week may have been a manifestation of the momentum generated by the Kamala Harris announcement.

This week, the President’s approval rating improved by 2 points compared to last week, and it now stands at net -3% approval. Our poll found that 42% approve and 45% disapprove of the President’s overall job performance since taking office. In parallel to last week, 10% of those who voted for Trump in 2016 say that they disapprove of his job performance. On the other hand, 13% of those who voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016 now say that they approve of the President’s overall job performance.

Whereas Trump’s approval rating is now the same as it was on August 12th, when it stood at -3%, it has improved slightly since our poll on 9th July, when it was at net -5%. Overall, Trump’s approval rating has stabilised around the -5 to -3% level across our polls in the past two months, which is a significant improvement since June, when it stood at net -11% approval.

Overall, Biden has continued to maintain a strong 10% lead over Trump in this week’s poll. The Democratic ticket has also solidified its initial gains in regard to the level of enthusiasm that its likely voters have for Biden’s candidacy, suggesting that Harris has had a positive impact on the campaign. This week, Trump has an opportunity to boost his own campaign by attracting support during the ongoing Republican National Convention. Our weekly polling will continue to monitor how voting intention evolves as Election Day approaches.

[1] Data were weighted to the profile of adults (18+) in the United States. Data were weighted by age, gender, region, ethnicity/race, education level and 2016 Presidential Election Vote. Targets for each weighting were derived from the official estimates of the United States Census and the results of the 2016 Presidential Election.

To find out more information about this research contact our research team. Redfield & Wilton Strategies is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules. Follow us on Twitter

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