The Corner

Elections

Trump and McSally Trail Democrats in Arizona

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden speaks during a campaign event in Wilmington, Del., July 14, 2020. (Leah Millis/Reuters)

In a new poll of registered voters in Arizona, both President Donald Trump and Republican senator Martha McSally trail their Democratic challengers by several points.

The survey, conducted by CBS News/YouGov over several days last week, found that Joe Biden leads Trump by a three-point margin among likely voters, with 47 percent support to Trump’s 44 percent. Six percent of voters said they remained undecided, and 3 percent said they plan to vote for someone else.

But what’s especially interesting is the way respondents answered the detailed survey questions. Among likely voters who said they’ll back Biden, a plurality (47 percent) said they plan to do so because he’s not Trump, while 34 percent said they’ll back Biden because they like him and 19 percent said they support him because he’s the Democratic nominee.

Those same numbers are a totally different story when it comes to support for Trump. An overwhelming majority (75 percent) say they’ll vote for Trump because they like him, while 10 percent are supporting him as the GOP candidate and 15 percent will vote for him to oppose Biden.

Meanwhile, there seems to be a little bit of room for Trump to expand his support. Among likely voters who reported that they aren’t planning to vote for him, 3 percent said they’d certainly still consider doing so and 9 percent said they might consider it. Eighty-eight percent of those voters said they certainly won’t consider backing Trump between now and the election; by contrast, among likely voters who said they wouldn’t vote for Biden, only 81 percent said they won’t even consider doing so between now and Election Day.

When the survey asked likely Trump voters what they’d be most concerned about if Biden won, 64 percent said economic issues and 27 percent cited policing and protests. Biden supporters, meanwhile, said if Trump wins reelection they’d be most concerned about coronavirus issues (44 percent) and race relations (29 percent).

When it comes to the Senate race in Arizona, Republican incumbent Martha McSally is trailing her Democratic challenger, Mark Kelly, by seven points, 49 percent to 42 percent. The two candidates are nearly tied among men, but Kelly has a large lead among women, with 53 percent support to McSally’s 38 percent. He also has a slight lead among independents, who favor him by a four-point margin.

Arizona is one of several key swing states in play in this year’s election. In 2016, Trump defeated Hillary Clinton in the state by a margin of a little less than four points.

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