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UT/Trib: Trump 49, Biden 44

Our first post-primary poll.

Donald Trump would beat Joe Biden by five points in Texas if the presidential race were held now, according to the latest University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll.

In a Trump-Biden contest, Democratic and Republican voters overwhelmingly back their own party’s candidate. But independent voters are on the fence, with 39% favoring Trump, 29% favoring Biden and 32% saying they haven’t formed an opinion.

The five point difference in support — 44% for Biden, 49% for Trump — is in line with previous UT/TT Polls taken before Democrats had settled on a nominee. In November 2019, the president was 7 percentage points ahead of Biden in a hypothetical general election matchup. In the February survey — conducted shortly before the presidential primaries in Texas and before the coronavirus outbreak was widespread — the two candidates were 4 percentage points apart. In all three of the most recent surveys, Trump’s lead was small, but outside the margins of error; none of the results could be called a statistical tie.

Trump has a harder race against himself. Ask Texans whether they would vote today to re-elect the president and, as they have done in four previous UT/TT polls, they split down the middle: 50% say they would vote for him, 49% said they’d vote against him.

Among Republican voters, 81% say they would definitely vote for Trump, and another 11% say they probably would. Democratic voters are just the opposite, with 85% definitely planning to vote for someone else, and 9% probably planning to. Most independent voters — 61% — would vote for someone else, while 39% say they’d vote for the president.

It’s only when you add Biden to the mix that Trump pulls ahead. “When you put a flesh-and-blood opponent against them, they do better,” said Daron Shaw, co-director of the poll and a government professor at the University of Texas at Austin.

Here’s the previous UT/Trib poll, from February, and here’s four other poll results from just before the primary. Those were indeed the last polls taken, according to FiveThirtyEight. Biden has been closer in some polls and a little farther back in some others. There are probably still a few Dems who are in the “don’t know/no opinion” bucket right now, as was definitely the case during the primary campaign, so he ought to inch up a bit all else being equal.

The main thing I will note is that not only does Biden start out scoring higher than Hillary Clinton did in 2016 – she only reached as high as 44% in two polls the whole cycle – he’s also above where Beto was in 2018. Beto only reached the 44% mark once before August, then was pretty consistently at or above it after that. Beto was still a fairly unknown candidate at this point in 2018, and his rise later was a sign that he was genuinely growing his support. I said this a few times during that cycle that while we had seen occasional polls that showed a Democrat “close” to a Republican statewide, the actual numbers would usually be something like 42-36, with a ton of “don’t know/no opinion” answers. It was truly rare before 2018 to see a Dem score as much as 42 or 43 percent in a poll, let alone 44 or 45. Wendy Davis in 2014 and Barack Obama in 2012 seldom touched 40 percent. For good reason, it turned out – Davis finished at 39%, Obama at 41. Seeing Biden start out at 44 is a sign that the gains Dems made in 2018 seem to be durable, and while we may not win statewide again, we’ll have enough of a share of the vote to do some damage downballot, as we did then. Winning the Texas House, and picking up some Congressional seats, is likely going to depend on Biden at least coming close to the 48% Beto got in 2018. The polling we have so far, which goes back to those pre-primary polls, suggests this is within range. The rest is up to us.

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17 Comments

  1. Manny says:

    The Trump Depression, will tilt Texas to the Blue side this year.

    As Clinton and Trump are fond of saying it is the economy, stupid, and Trump has made a mess of it.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/video/politics/campaign-ads-2020/priorities-usa-one-week-later–campaign-2020/2020/04/06/72c83e3e-9a67-4a10-a0be-437aaf145869_video.html

  2. Bill Daniels says:

    Biden is OK in hiding right now, but he’s going to get hit with the pound me too, believe all women Tara Reade rape, no matter how hard the MSM tries to bury it. They’ve already tried to scuttle the tape of Tara’s mother calling in to Larry King’s show at the time saying her daughter was raped. Not every pound me too-er is just going to roll over because it’s Joe Biden. A monster was created that can’t just be put back in the box.

    Then there’s the matter of Joe’s clear intellectual disability, which seems to be getting more pronounced. He needed a teleprompter to ‘have a phone conversation’ in which he accepted Bernie’s endorsement. That’s not normal. Any debate between him and Trump is going to be brutal, like watching a MMA fighter beat up a sickly old man. The only wild card there is, will people watching just plain feel sorry for Joe and not want to vote Trump because he beat up on a helpless, feeble old man?

    And Manny, can we now all finally agree that this is no longer Obama’s economy? So when Trump brings us back, it is the Trump economy? Can we all just finally agree on that? I do concur with you that this will all boil down to the economy, a rare moment of agreement with you.

  3. Bill Daniels says:

    Here’s the firmly in the tank for the DNC MSM making fun of Biden back when it was still OK to do so, back when Biden was a punch line.

    http://www.cc.com/video-clips/yfmksi/the-daily-show-with-jon-stewart-the-audacity-of-grope

    But now all that will be scrubbed and denied, because job one is to defeat Trump.

  4. Manny says:

    Bill, you are being senile, I told you 2017 was Obama’s after that it belonged to Trump. Guess you only remember the stuff you want to remember. Trump is not bringing any thing back, he will be out this year. This country can’t afford more of him, it took him 2 years to lose as many jobs as were created in the last 12 years.

    So Bill, you care that one woman has accused Biden, but not that at least 25 have accused Trump, including one minor who accused him of rape. That is very interesting.

    Biden may not be the smartest, but he is certainly way above Trump’s level of intelligence, have you done as your leader suggested injected yourself with bleach?

    Bill save your stupidity for Republicans they excel at being misled, lied to, and being fools.

    I have no idea why you defend Trump and the Republicans, you are smart enough to want to protect your mom. That is most than those idiots are willing to do, old folks are suppose to sacrifice themselves at the alter of money, economy.

  5. Jason Hochman says:

    This shows how weak of a candidate that Biden is, when we have seen that Trump’s dementia is progressing, and he refuses to step back a little and let others run things. I think that Reagan realized in his second term that he was in a bit of decline and he knew that he had competent people who could run the show.

  6. Bill Daniels says:

    Manny,

    The Trump accusers, all came forward AFTER announced he was running for president. Convenient, huh? Biden’s accuser made numerous outcries back when it allegedly happened, including the mother’s call to Larry King.

    I’m just laughing at you with your ‘believe all women’ sincerity, crawfishing away from Tara Reade’s rape. You’re happy to vote for a handsy, grabby rapist as long as it gets rid of Trump. Look, I don’t know whether Reade is just a money grubbing psycho going for a money grab to shut up or not. Maybe she is just doing a shake down, hoping for a DNC payoff. The point is, you’re gonna believe all women, right up until you aren’t, because it’s not convenient.

  7. Jules says:

    Bill you are a liar. Ivana accused trump of rape in 1989.

    It is terrible that both candidates are accused rapists.

  8. asmith says:

    If Trump only wins by 5 the TX House is a coin flip. The rurals will still come out strong for Trump but the erosion in the older suburbs/suburban counties will be felt down ballot. The Dems only need 9 seats and the Austin crowd will tell you that the Bohac seat in Houston is already gone to the Dems.

    If Trump only wins by 2 or 3 the Dems may win most of the battleground congressional races in Texas CD2, 10, 21, 22, 23, 24.

  9. Brad says:

    Bill,

    Donald Trump:
    “Grab them by the pussy”

  10. Manny says:

    Bill, Trump has had allegations lodged against him for sexual assaults for most of his adult life.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donald_Trump_sexual_misconduct_allegations

    I would vote for the devil to get rid of Trump, the Devil would be a step up from Trump.

    Bill, I think you are barking up the wrong tree, I have stated that Trump is a racist and a bigot. My wife and I have agreed to disagree, because I think that if the allegations are true they should have been made at an earlier time. But then again some of the women have claimed that their lives and their families lives were threatened by someone supposedly associated with Trump.

    You on the other hand called all the women that accused Trump liars, but you tend to believe this one, why is that Bill? Could it be, because you are a lying Republican troll that will say anything to get a point across.

  11. David Fagan says:

    I’m voting for Judge Judy

  12. Bill Daniels says:

    Manny,

    I don’t necessarily believe any of these women, including Tara Reade. I especially don’t believe the soft parade of women who are not bombshell gorgeous who accused Trump. A guy who pulls all the 10’s he wants isn’t going to go slumming, forcing himself on dog faced pony women all the sudden. That defies logic.

    We saw the Kavanaugh liars all fold, and have their stories collapse. But then, as you frequently point out, I’m a sexist, misogynist, racist, homophobe, Islamophobe, etc., so of course I don’t ‘believe all wamyn.’ Why would someone like me believe all women? I wouldn’t. I don’t, because I am a bad person, right?

    You and the pussy hat brigade, though, you are none of those things, and you do believe all women, and you understand that running for president is just a job interview, and so just a word from a woman should be enough to ruin any man’s chances for the job. Fine. The question is, why are you going to vote for a guy who has failed the job interview because of an allegation (and years of cringeworthy grabbing and sniffing, of course)?

    It was very important Kavanaugh did not get the job because of an unsubstantiated claim by a heavily compensated woman against him, who’s story fell apart, by the way. Why isn’t it equally important that Biden not get the job. He’s got a criminal complaint sworn against him. It’s just a job interview, remember?

    https://www.newsweek.com/joe-biden-sexual-assault-police-tara-reade-1497391

    There is no option for you, if you really want to hold fast to your feminist ideology, but to vote for someone NOT Trump and NOT Biden.

  13. robert says:

    Not to generalize, but this is how I feel talking to anyone I know that supports Trump..

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NzDhm808oU4

  14. Bill Daniels says:

    *whose

  15. David Fagan says:

    I’m voting for Norm Macdonald

  16. Manny says:

    Bill obviously you have never been a player, you must either be or were ugly as heck, because a player is only interested in the hunt. He is not always hunting for the trophy unless he is thinking of marrying them. Heck Bill are you still be a virgin.