New poll shows Trump and the top members of his administration are all deeply unpopular

A new poll from PPP confirms that Donald Trump, though he’s been president less than a week, is already underwater with most Americans. But the people he’s surrounded himself with are even more despised:

Donald Trump

Favorable: 44

Unfavorable: 50

Sean Spicer

Favorable: 24

Unfavorable: 37

Kellyanne Conway

Favorable: 32

Unfavorable: 43

Vladimir Putin

Favorable: 10

Unfavorable: 67

Only the best people, right, comrade?

Morning Digest: New Pew report shows how middle-class areas swung away from Democrats in 2016

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Demographics: Pew’s landmark study from a year ago that looked at the changing composition of the middle class over the decades has become an interesting lens through which we can look at the 2016 presidential election. Pew’s definition of middle class was “between two-thirds of and twice the national median size-adjusted household income,” and, despite the conventional wisdom that declines in the manufacturing sector were wreaking havoc in one-time manufacturing-centered communities, the metro areas with the largest percentage of residents still in the middle class leaned heavily toward those mid-sized Rust Belt cities. (For instance, the top three percentage-wise—Wausau, Janesville, and Sheboygan—were all in Wisconsin.)

So now, Pew has matched up the list of metro areas by middle class percentage with the 2016 election results, and, as you probably anticipated given the “Rust Belt” descriptor, the places with the largest “middle class” communities are

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Data show that a ‘whitelash’ did not elect Trump; It was—like always—about the economy

The morning after the election, Van Jones offered his thoughts on the outcome:

“This was a whitelash against a changing country. It was whitelash against a black president in part. And that’s the part where the pain comes.”

Jones spoke honestly, from a place of sincere emotion, and I have a great deal of respect for that. His thesis certainly appealed to a lot of people. Given that Trump began his campaign with racist rhetoric and never really stopped, it also makes quite a bit of sense on the surface. There’s one problem: The numbers say it doesn’t hold water.

Yes, Hillary Clinton won the popular vote by a margin now approaching two million. That’s very important to remember going forward, but not especially helpful in terms of exploring why Trump did as well as he did. Let’s also leave aside the impact of James Comey’s completely inappropriate actions.

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Morning Digest: Court strikes down Wisconsin GOP map as unconstitutional partisan gerrymander

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WI Redistricting: Foes of partisan gerrymandering scored a monumental victory Monday when a three-judge federal panel struck down the Republican-drawn map of the Wisconsin state Assembly as an unconstitutional partisan gerrymander. State Senate districts could also be affected since they each consist of three nested Assembly districts. Wisconsin is one of the most heavily gerrymandered states in the country, and Democrats won the statewide popular vote for the legislature in 2012, but these maps helped give Republicans a majority of seats. Critically, however, this new ruling could reverberate well beyond Wisconsin because the case now sets the stage for a future Supreme Court decision that could set major limits on partisan gerrymandering nationwide.

An earlier Supreme Court ruling called Vieth v. Jubelirer previously held that partisan gerrymandering could be unconstitutional. But in that case, Justice Anthony Kennedy, as the deciding vote, refused to strike down

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The polls were well and truly f***ed. Again.

Holy hell. What a turn in U.S. history. And we didn’t even see it coming—because the polls were way, way off, as they were in 2014. We found ourselves facing vote margins in the presidential race that were 5, 10, even 14 points off from our final Daily Kos Elections polling average margin. The miss, on average, was a little under 5 points too rosy for Hillary Clinton on the margin. That will probably improve a little as more ballots are counted, but not that much.

What’s remarkable, as the graph at the top of this post shows, is that the polling average miss was almost universally in Trump’s favor—those are the dots below the green line. Polls often miss, but almost always, some misses favor one party and some favor the other. The uniformity of the misses here is striking. Want further details to obsess over and distract

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Kander is closing fast in Missouri’s key Senate race, poll finds

Goal Thermometer

Great news out of Missouri:

GOP Sen. Roy Blunt is locked in an extremely tight battle with Democrat Jason Kander in Missouri’s key Senate race, with 47 percent to Kander’s 46 percent in a new poll from Monmouth University. […]

Blunt’s edge in the Missouri race has narrowed over the course of three recent polls conducted by Monmouth University: In August, he had a 48 percent to 43 percent lead, which narrowed to 46 percent to 44 percent in mid-October.

Missouri is one state that is not looking swingy in the presidential race, so Kander will have to run well ahead of Hillary Clinton. But according to this polling, he is doing that, and closing fast.

Can you help put Jason Kander over the top with a $3 contribution?

Morning Digest: Missouri’s Senate race becomes the unlikeliest tossup of 2016

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MO-Sen: Mason-Dixon is out with one of the very few public polls we’ve seen lately of the Missouri Senate race, and they show Republican Sen. Roy Blunt edging Democrat Jason Kander 47-46. With so little polling, though, it’s tough to know what’s going on in the Show Me State, but each party is acting like it’s close. Roll Call recently reported that unnamed officials from both sides agree the contest is tight, and that neither knows what will happen.

Outside groups from each party are also continuing to spend heavily here. Some Democrats also privately told Roll Call that they’re afraid that the undecideds are disproportionately conservative Trump supporters who will end up backing Blunt in the end. However, Republicans aren’t acting confident that the undecideds will sweep Blunt to a second term.

Kander, an Afghanistan veteran who currently serves as Missouri’s secretary of

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Trumped if they do, Trumped if they don’t: New poll finds House GOP hosed no matter what they try

Goal Thermometer

For the second time this week, a new poll finds Democrats with a 7-point lead in the generic congressional ballot—right around the mark they’d need in order to pull off the improbable feat of retaking the House. On Monday, an NBC/Wall Street Journal survey said that voters prefer to see Democrats control Congress next year by a 49-42 margin. That was followed on Tuesday by a Global Strategy Group poll for the DCCC that also found Democrats ahead by that exact same 49-42 spread.

But the news is actually much, much worse for Republicans than even this. GSG also tested three hypothetical scenarios that reflect how the final month of the race could unfold in the wake of Donald Trump’s “grab them by the pussy” remarks, and every alternative is just terrible for the GOP:

It’s really happening: New poll shows Sheriff Joe Arpaio down 10 points—and it’s from a Republican

Goal Thermometer

It’s been a week from hell for Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, and it couldn’t be happening to a more deserving guy. On Tuesday, federal prosecutors in Arizona charged America’s worst lawman with criminal contempt of court for violating judge’s order to curtail his department’s unconstitutional racial profiling practices—charges that could carry jail time.

Now the news has gotten even worse for Arpaio. A new poll shows him trailing his Democratic opponent, former Phoenix police sergeant Paul Penzone—by 10 points:

Paul Penzone (D): 51

Joe Arpaio (R): 41

Several other Democratic polls have shown Arpaio trailing, but this poll, we should stress, comes Sherpa Public Affairs, a firm run by a former aide to none other than Sen. John McCain. So if even Republican pollsters agree that Arpaio’s in serious trouble, well, you better believe he is.

But here’s the thing: Like his birther bosom buddy Donald Trump, Arpaio’s got

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Morning Digest: A new poll shows Missouri’s Senate race the closest it’s ever been

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MO-Sen, MO-Gov: There have been lots of rumors floating around of internal polls showing Democratic Secretary of State Jason Kander defeating Republican Sen. Roy Blunt in Missouri’s Senate race, but no public poll had shown that, and that’s still the case—but that doesn’t mean Republicans should relax. On Wednesday, Monmouth returned to the Show Me State, and they find Blunt leading 46-44 against Kander. But while Blunt still has the edge, Kander’s getting closer, as Monmouth saw a 48-43 Blunt advantage in August. In fact, this is the closest we’ve ever seen the race in a reliable public poll.

On the other hand, the gubernatorial race has grown tighter since the summer. Democratic Attorney General Chris Koster led Republican Eric Greitens 51-40 at the time, but now Monmouth sees Koster leading by only 46-43. Missouri Democrats have had some success at retaining the governor’s chair

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Post-debate polls: Hillary Clinton wins again!

The first post-debate polls are coming in, and once again, viewers are declaring Hillary Clinton the winner. CNN/ORC:

Hillary Clinton: 57

Donald Trump: 34

YouGov:

Hillary Clinton: 47

Donald Trump: 42

Pundits have been busy trying to spin Sunday night’s debate as a positive for Trump, because he didn’t actually drop trou on stage. But regular Americans who actually watched the event have rightly reached a different conclusion.

Morning Digest: Maggie Hassan wants to make Kelly Ayotte pay for calling Trump a role model for kids

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NH-Sen: Republican Sen. Kelly Ayotte is locked in a tough re-election fight, but she’s largely been able to put some much-needed distance between her and Donald Trump. While the Daily Kos Elections polling average gives Ayotte just a 46-45 lead over Democrat Maggie Hassan, Hillary Clinton has a 46-40 edge in New Hampshire. But Ayotte complicated things at a debate Monday when, after she was asked whether she would cite Trump as a role model for children, she replied, “I think that certainly there are many role models that we have. I believe he can serve as president, so absolutely, I would do that.” Hassan is now out with a commercial that aims to make Ayotte eat her words.

Like Clinton, Hassan understands that there’s no one better equipped to make the case against Donald Trump than Donald Trump. Hassan’s spot starts with that

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Trump supporters vote multiple times in fake online polls, use that to claim he ‘won’ the debate

Anyone who watched Monday night’s presidential debate knows that Donald Trump got creamed. He needed to prove to undecided voters (and people who won’t tune in except for the debate) that he wasn’t crazy and unstable—and he failed miserably.

Which is the consensus from virtually all media pundits, GOP consultant Frank Luntz’s focus group, and the few scientific polls that have popped up since. 

But that’s not what Trump supporters are saying, because they create their own reality. As the Daily Dot reports

Donald Trump supporters artificially manipulated the results of online polls to create a false narrative that the Republican nominee won the first presidential debate on Monday night.

The efforts originated from users of the pro-Trump Reddit community r/The_Donald and 4chan message boards, which bombarded around 70 polls, including those launched by Time, Fortune, and CNBC. 

And, presto! You suddenly see a bunch of online polls that claim—despite any objective

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Clinton CRUSHES Trump in post-debate polls

There you have it, folks. The polls are in, and the viewers have rendered their verdict: It was an absolute slaughter. CNN’s poll shows 62 percent of those who watches the first debate felt that Hillary Clinton won, while only 27 percent said that Trump was the victor. A separate poll from PPP, meanwhile, also gave a win to Clinton, by a 51-40 margin.

For once, the pundits, the pollsters, and the people all agree. Now let’s just see how Trump reacts tomorrow.

Don’t panic about the polls—but you can still worry

Yeah, it’s hard. But take a look at the graph above that shows the margins in national presidential polls for the final year over the past three cycles. The spread between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump is almost the same as the gap in both the 2008 and 2012 elections at this time!

In 2008, the margin improved after September. In 2012, it fell. But in both cases, the Democrat won.

Look closer. The line for 2016 has never gone below zero, whereas we did see that happen in both 2008 and 2012 (yes, there’s still time for this to happen). In fact, if forced to pick which line I’d rather be on, I’d pick 2016’s for sure.

That doesn’t mean Trump can’t win. He can, of course. But Clinton is still the favorite, and always has been.

But what about the primaries? They said Trump could never win! And he did! And

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I am incredibly enthusiastic about voting for Hillary Clinton. Here’s why.

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Meh.

Apparently, those three letters sum up how a good number of Americans, in particular younger voters, feel about the prospect of voting for Hillary Clinton. Tina Nguyen at Vanity Fair put it as follows: “the majority of millennials, nearly all of whom disagree with Trump’s positions, are not sufficiently excited by the Democratic alternative to do anything about it.”

Granted, it’s just one survey, but look at the numbers from Quinnipiac’s poll conducted September 8 to 13. Almost half of those under age 35 say they’re voting for Gary Johnson or Jill Stein. Other polling—along with Clinton’s performance among younger voters in 2008 as well as in the primary contest against Bernie Sanders—show similar problems for her.

I don’t want to focus too long on the numbers, but these kinds of figures tell me that younger Americans are probably the group with the highest percentage of persuadable

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An ‘education gap’ is emerging in the polls, and it’s massive

Perhaps the most dramatic change in polls this year is related to education levels. As seen above, voters with a college degree favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump by an outsized ~20-30 points (including those with postgraduate education, among whom the advantage is 25-35 points). This is an astounding change from the past several decades, when college-educated voters have been more or less evenly split, and an even greater change from the Reagan years, when this was a solidly Republican demographic.

This is, of course, the good news. The bad news is the other side of the education gap: declines for Democrats among those without a college education. 

Below, more data from the recent Pew report sheds light on this phenomenon.

Forty-three days remain until the election. Click here to make sure you’re registered to vote. And while you’re at it, make sure your family and friends are registered

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A fascinating look inside the making of a poll

Here at Daily Kos Elections, we pay a lot of attention to polls. Part of that is paying attention to the errors in polls, so that we can tell the difference between normal poll-to-poll variations and changes that actually mean something. So we were excited to see a clever experiment using a Florida poll that showed just how much error can come from the way polling data are processed.

Most people are pretty familiar with random error, which gives rise to the famous margin of error stated in nearly every telephone poll. This error alone can cause a decently sized poll to bounce around quite a bit, and if the sample is too small, as is routinely the case in the infamous UNH polls, the margin between two candidates can jump around like a jackrabbit on crack.

But there’s many more sources of error in polling, from how the respondents are

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Shifting sands of party support sort the nation: Democrats diversify, Republicans stagnate

With a treasure trove of data and trends, Pew has released a report on party affiliation recently that’s well worth the time to read through. The big picture shows the pool of registered voters diversifying and changing—and one of the two parties changing along with it.

Below, we’ll discuss a few intriguing takeaways from the report, but first: test yourself! See if you can match the pie chart to the dataset description in the figure just below:

guess.png

Morning Digest: Republicans are afraid they could lose all three marquee contests in North Carolina

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NC-Gov, NC-Sen: Republicans are increasingly fretting about the prospect of major losses in North Carolina. Donald Trump’s near lack of a campaign has allowed Hillary Clinton and her allies to build an enormous advantage in terms of field offices and seven-to-one TV ad spending advantage. These disparities have local and national Republicans worried that they could fail to turn out enough of their voters in November, and indeed, polls show Clinton has a good chance of carrying North Carolina, despite the fact that the state went for Mitt Romney four years ago. That could cost Republicans dearly in one of just two states that’s hosting contested race for president, Senate, and governor this year.

Compounding matters further is Gov. Pat McCrory’s unpopularity amid the continued fallout from House Bill 2. That anti-LGBT rights law has mired North Carolina in national controversy, civil rights lawsuits, and

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