On the 2016 Presidential Election Polls
Reviewing presidential election polls is like watching politically loaded horse races in slow motion.
According to RealClearPolitics, based on various polls conducted at the end of December 2015, it looks like for the most part, Donald Trump and Ted Cruz are the two most likely to receive the Republican nomination for president. Marco Rubio and Ben Carson are moderately and respectably holding their own (note that CNN considers Trump, Cruz, and Rubio in “dead heat”), but at this point, Jeb! Bush’s ratings are just an embarrassment. Still, Bush is reorganizing his campaign for a third time in (far-fetched?) hopes to nab the Republican endorsement and votes enough to live in the same Pennsylvania Avenue house as his father and brother once did.
There are some with the likelihood of a 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue home address stacked against them, and Jeb! is certainly among that group.
With the Republicans, Trump is out front; however, he is a rich guy who can buy himself a run as an independent (which he apparently has threatened to do) if he does not receive the Republican nomination (something the Republican National Party doesn’t seem keen on anyway) and which likely worries the Republicans as it could force a three-way presidential race that could be the Republican-in-the-House undoing in Election 2016.
On the Democratic side, Clinton is overshadowing Bernie Sanders by a notable margin (e.g., +23 in Nevada on Dec. 30, 2015). Clinton is corporate Democrat material, the kind favored by the Democratic National Party, so it seems at this point she will get the Democratic nod for nomination.
Sanders has said that he would not run as an independent if he does not receive the Democratic nomination and that he would support whoever receives the Democratic nomination– which means he would support Clinton.
RealClearPolitics publishes results of those “if you had to vote for president today and choose between” polls in which individuals are asked to choose between two candidates. From December 10 to 23, 2015, Clinton is ahead of Trump in such polls by an average of 5 points. From December 06 to 21, 2015, Clinton is ahead of Cruz by only half a point, and results from December 06 to 21, 2015, have Rubio ahead of Clinton by 1.6 points.
It has been a couple of weeks since the public has been asked about Clinton versus Bush. From November 15 to December 17, 2015, Clinton was ahead of Bush by 1.3 points, with Clinton ahead of Bush in the most recent such poll (December 16-17, 2015) by 5 points. Bush has not been ahead of Clinton in these polls since mid-November.
It is worth noting that these polls do not account for the very real probability of “Democratic nominee versus Republican Nominee versus Trump.”
The 2016 Republican primaries are scheduled to fall between February and June, with the 2016 Republican National Convention scheduled for July– the earliest since 1948.
The slow-mo 2016 presidential horse race continues.
More to come in 2016.