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September 12, 2016

The Trans-Partisan Trade Revolt:...

By Stanley Greenberg Appeared in U.S. News & World Report on September 9, 2016. The heated opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership in...
July 29, 2016

A Mandate to Rewrite the Rules of...

As the two party conventions were starting, Donald Trump enjoyed about a 4-point advantage on the economy and that is what keeps him in the race to...
July 26, 2016

A Guide to the Women’s Vote

Commentaries on the dynamics of the 2016 race have focused on Donald Trump’s strength with working class men and Hillary Clinton’s challenge with white...

National Surveys
Dial Meters Show Clinton Wins First Debate: Win Produces Important Shifts to Clinton
Tuesday, September 27 2016
Attachments:
Download this file (Dcor_Debate Dials_Deck_09.27.2016_For Release.pdf)Presentation[ ]2110 Kb
Download this file (Dcor_Debate Dials_Memo_9.27.2016_for release.pdf)Memo[ ]533 Kb

Hillary Clinton won the first debate against Donald Trump and likely produced electoral shifts, according to participants in a live dial meter focus group organized by Democracy Corps and commissioned by Women’s Voices. Women Vote Action Fund.[1]These participants, comprised of voter blocs critical to the outcome of this election, watched a Democratic candidate lay out a broad economic vision that spoke to their lives, show strength that reassured on security, speak to our nation’s racial divisions in a way that engaged voters and most of all, reassure them on trust and honesty. Trump’s performance, with some exceptional moments, lacked the bombast of previous efforts, but did little to reassure voters about the prospect of a Trump presidency, particularly when it comes to security. Dials showed that Trump really struggled with both his tax plan and his own taxes, his contempt for women and above all, when he talked about his favorite subject: himself. The only area where he made gains was on having the right approach to trade agreements.

View the dial meter slides.

Read the dial meter report.

Clinton produced impressive gains in the vote, squeezing the third party candidates and raising intensity of support with white unmarried women and white working class voters.[2]That alone would be a big night. But just as important, she shifted these voters’ perceptions of her as a person on such key attributes as trustworthiness, having good plans for the economy, jobs, and looking out for the middle class. There was also a huge shift in her overall favorability (+33 points).

The white working class story is almost as impressive. Their lines spiked all through the debate and their favorability towards Clinton also shifted 33 points. The 2-way vote margin shifted 16 points as the 3rd party vote got squeezed. And at the end of the debate she won her biggest gains with these working class voters on the economy, keeping America strong and having the right approach to taxes. Clinton could not have hoped for better.

Millennials also responded very positively to key parts of Clinton’s performance, though their favorability shift was not as great as other groups and Clinton lost a little ground on the vote. We will watch what happens in the real world.

Overall, this was a very good night for Hillary Clinton.

View the dial meter slides.

Read the dial meter report.



[1] Democracy Corps conducted online dial meter research among 100 likely voters nationally: 50 persuadable voters, 25 white unmarried women, and 25 millennials during the presidential debate. Surveys were administered before and after the live dial meter session. An online breakout focus group among those who changed their vote or become more certain of the vote was conducted after the debate.

[2] This research is qualitative in nature and involves 100 total participants.  Results are not statistically projectable onto a larger population.

 
A Guide to the Women’s Vote
Tuesday, July 26 2016
Attachments:
Download this file (Women Handout_WV FINAL.pdf)Handout[ ]505 Kb

Commentaries on the dynamics of the 2016 race have focused on Donald Trump’s strength with working class men and Hillary Clinton’s challenge with white men. White non-college men are voting for Trump 58 to 22 percent in a 3-way ballot, and 75 percent view Clinton unfavorably (67 percent very unfavorably). This explains Trump’s “Rust Belt” strategy and Clinton’s choice of Senator Tim Kaine as running mate. 

But white working class men are only 18 percent of likely 2016 voters. In a 3-way race, they would need to count for 25 percent of voters in order for Trump to be competitive with Hillary Clinton and in a 2-way race, the white working class men would need to count for 36 percent of the electorate, with all else equal.

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That is why women will determine the outcome of this election. They are repulsed by Donald Trump, and 63 percent view him unfavorably, (58 percent very unfavorably). Hillary Clinton was 3 points ahead of Donald Trump in a 3-way ballot in Democracy Corps’ national likely voter survey right before the Republican Convention; that grew to 7 points ahead in a 2-way ballot. But consolidated support among key groups of women and gains with white working class women are likely to propel her further ahead in the days after the Democratic National Convention.

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It is critical for Clinton to consolidate support with one of the most reliable and fastest growing Democratic voting blocs: the unmarried women who now count for one-quarter of all voters. In a 3-way ballot, Clinton leads unmarried women 59 to 26 percent, with 8 percent voting for Libertarian Gary Johnson. It is possible that unmarried women will out-perform the 66 percent vote they gave President Obama in 2012; Clinton already wins 66 to 29 percent in a 2-way ballot.

That will be achieved by appealing to the white unmarried women, where there is room for Clinton to grow: 52 percent of white unmarried women voted for Obama in 2012, but only 43 percent are voting for Clinton in a 3-way race now. As unmarried women grow, the more conservative married women become less important. Married women are only giving Clinton 39 percent of the vote in a 3-way ballot (47 Trump) but they are now just 28 percent of the electorate, compared to 33 percent of voters in 2004.

College educated women will count for 27 percent of the 2016 electorate, up from 23 percent in 2004, and they are delivering a 20 point margin for Clinton in a 3-way ballot (up from +13 for President Obama in 2012). College educated women are more economically stable, with just 38 percent giving the state of the economy an unfavorable score, are more socially liberal, and nearly half are favorable towards Clinton. They are also the group most enthusiastic about voting in 2016, with 79 percent saying this election matters tremendously, motivated by their disdain for Donald Trump (7 in 10 rate Trump unfavorably and 58 percent say there is no chance they will support him).

The white working class women, by comparison, will count for only 17 percent of the 2016 electorate and 64 percent are voting for Trump in the 3-way ballot. The 35 point margin for Trump is fairly recent and has allowed Trump to move ahead of Romney’s margin (39 Obama, 59 Romney, +20 Romney). Thus, persuadable white working class women are also an important target for progressives, as women play such a critical role in 2016.

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Millennial women are a growing proportion of the electorate – 18-29 year old women counted for 6 percent of the electorate in 2004, but millennial women will count for 15 percent of 2016 voters – and they are among the most progressive. They are very socially liberal and cynical about corporate America and less likely than other groups of women to say this election matters tremendously. But their 63 percent vote for Clinton in a 2-way ballot points to huge gains for Clinton if millennial women consolidate behind her after the convention.

It is worth noting that millennial women are increasingly diverse – only 52 percent are white. While the minority vote tends to consolidate later in polling, Clinton is already meeting the +69 point margin that Obama won in 2012 with minority women (84 Obama, 15 Romney in 2012; 76 Clinton, 8 Trump in July 2016).

If consolidated, the growing numbers of key groups of women – unmarried women and college educated women, particularly the millennials – and the persuadable white working class women will elect the first woman president. 

 
Presidential Race Tightens, Structure of Race Remains Unchanged
Tuesday, July 19 2016
Attachments:
Download this file (Dcor_July National_E Alert_7.19.2016_final.pdf)Presentation[ ]625 Kb
Download this file (Dcor_July National_EAlert_Memo_7.19.2016_final.pdf)Memo[ ]334 Kb
Download this file (Democracy Corps and Roosevelt National 071816 FQ.pdf)Toplines[ ]317 Kb

A new national poll from Democracy Corps conducted in the days leading up to the GOP convention shows a rise in Hillary Clinton's negative image and a tightening 3-point presidential race; but this poll reveals no changes to the structure of the race which indicates Clinton can quickly raise her vote and a repudiation of Donald Trump. This national survey of likely 2016 voters was conducted July 13-18; sixty-seven percent of respondents were reached by cell phone in order to accurately sample the electorate.[1]

Three weeks ago, Democracy Corps found Clinton held an 8 point lead in a three-way presidential ballot across the 9 most competitive battleground states and her margin was even greater in our national polling. That advantage has been squeezed by a real surge in Clinton’s negative ratings. Her total unfavorability rose 5 points to 55 percent, and 46 percent now hold very unfavorable views of her. This drop was likely driven by Director Comey's testimony, though the greatest worry about Clinton concerns the perception that she is part of the political elite that has taken care of itself.  

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Despite the changed favorability and vote, closer analysis of this survey reveals the structure of the race is unchanged and there are strong indications that the vote will consolidate at a much higher level behind Clinton. In a two-way ballot, Clinton’s margin grows to 7 points (50 to 43 percent); Clinton also has twice as many “winnable” voters as Trump (10 to 5 percent). This race is still shaped by Trump's high negatives – his unfavorability remains stuck at 60 percent – as well as a Republican Party this is viewed negatively by 51 percent of voters. Half of voters now say they absolutely will not vote for Trump, compared to 43 percent who say that of Clinton, and Trump's very unfavorable ratings are 7 points higher than Clinton's. Finally, Trump's vote in the 3-way ballot is stuck at around 40 percent. Nothing has changed that as the two parties enter their conventions.

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READ THE FULL MEMO.


[1] National likely voter survey conducted by Democracy Corps, June 13-18, 2016. Respondents who voted in the 2012 election, 2014 election, or registered since the 2014 election were selected from the national voter file.  Likely voters were determined based on stated intention of voting in 2016. Margin of error for the full sample = +/-3.27 percentage points at 95% confidence.  Sixty-seven percent of respondents were reached by cell phone, in order to account for ever-changing demographics and accurately sample the full electorate.

 
On Trade & TPP, Public Anger About Corporate Power Dominant Factor in Views
Wednesday, July 13 2016
Attachments:
Download this file (Dcorps_June Nat_Public Citizen_7.13.2016_for press release.pdf)Presentation[ ]1057 Kb
Download this file (Dcor_Public Citizen_June National_Memo_7.13.2016_FINAL FOR RELEASE.pdf)Memo[ ]620 Kb
Download this file (Democracy Corps 062916 FQ Public Citizen.pdf)Toplines[ ]330 Kb

New polling for Public Citizen provides powerful new insights about the public’s views on the trade issue generally, the Trans-Pacific Partnership specifically, and one of TPP’s central components – Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS). This unique survey of likely voters identifies key targets in the trade debate among Democrats, independents and Republicans and demonstrates how they can be moved to engage in the battle against TPP.[1]

The public begins the debate over TPP from a mostly disengaged and uncommitted position, bordering on neutrality. The public rates past trade agreements more positively than not, though many are unsure and few hold strong opinions. Like with many other issues, partisans of each party look different: Republicans are very negative and Democrats much more positive. That is likely exacerbated by the visible role of President Obama and demographic changes in both parties.  And despite vocal opposition of major presidential candidates in both party primaries and the expectations of trade activists, the public begins almost evenly divided on the TPP, with many reporting they do not know enough to have an opinion and many still very unsure what to make of it.

In this period, the public is very focused on and hostile to corporations and CEOs of big companies who take home huge pay packages, while failing to invest in their own companies or America. When trade arguments are married to the public’s anger with corporations and big money influence over government and politicians who no longer work for ordinary citizens, voters shift dramatically to oppose past trade pacts and the TPP.

The public’s aversion to corporate control over government turns to revulsion towards TPP when they learn that corporate advisors shaped this agreement in secret negotiations so it includes expanded rights for foreign corporations to sue the American government for damages in front of three unaccountable corporate lawyers at the taxpayers’ expense. ISDS concretizes corporate influence at the expense of the people. To be sure, the public is very concerned that TPP exposes Americans to other threats from corporations – from allowing more imports of unsafe food from foreign providers to the greater incentives for American companies to offshore jobs and reduce wages. But those arguments gain power within a message framework that condemns the backroom-dealing and new powers for corporations under ISDS.

When voters hear this message, they become far more critical of past trade agreements, shift dramatically from support to opposition on TPP, and become intent on holding political leaders accountable should they vote to pass the new trade agreement. This big shift occurs after voters are exposed to a balanced contest of messages and arguments from both sides of the TPP debate. The opposition message and arguments are just much stronger.

This poll also finds a clear winning message for members of Congress faced with a vote on TPP in the “lame duck” session after the election. Voters want to hear their member voice respect for President Obama’s intentions, but they also want them to join the presidential candidates, economists and colleagues on both sides of the aisle and stand up for the middle class by refusing to support this agreement.

READ THE FULL MEMO



[1]   Democracy Corps conducted a poll of 900 likely voters across the nation from June 23rd – 28th.  Sixty-six percent of the surveys were completed among cell phone respondents. The margin of error is +/- 3.27 percentage points at the 95 percent confidence level.  Margin of error is higher among subgroups.

 
Clinton and Congressional Democrats Widen Lead Over Opponents
Friday, July 08 2016

Hillary Clinton leads Donald Trump by 11 points in Democracy Corps’ most recent national survey (48 percent to 37 percent, with 8 percent voting for Libertarian Gary Johnson). This survey of 900 likely 2016 voters was conducted June 23-28th with 66 percent of respondents reached on cell phones. [1]

Importantly, this is the first time that we have seen the presidential vote margin for Democrats exceed the Democrats’ party identification advantage: in this case, Democrats hold a 6-point advantage in party identification and an 8-point advantage with Republican and Democratic leaning-independents.

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This poll also shows Democrats making gains down-ballot. In a named congressional ballot, Democratic congressional candidates have opened an 8-point lead over Republican congressional candidates (49 to 41 percent). This is up from a 6-point advantage over the Republican candidates in March polling, and the greatest margin for congressional Democrats that we have measured since June 2009 in our polling. This is also the same margin achieved during the wave elections of 2006 and 2008.

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[1] Democracy Corps conducted a poll of 900 likely voters across the nation from June 23rd – 28th.  Sixty-six percent of the surveys were completed among cell phone respondents. The margin of error is +/- 3.27 percentage points.  Margin of error is higher among subgroups.

 
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