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More Vain Regrets: Trump Less Popular With Republicans Now Than Before He Was Nominated - 8/31/16

Another depressing, but unfortunately not surprising poll, has recently been released by HuffPost/You Gov.  It indicates that fewer Republicans now think Donald Trump was the best choice to be the 2016 GOP nominee than they did back in June, after Trump had secured the nomination.

Even in June, the respondents in the poll hardly gave the Donald a ringing endorsement,  44% of those polled thought he was the best choice, while an equal percentage thought he was not.  Today, however, a majority of Republicans, 54 percent, think the party made the wrong choice, while barely more than a third of them (35%) still think Trump was the way to go.

However, the poll shows Republicans still have no consensus as to whom the alternative to Trump should have been.  Asked who they would vote for if they could vote in the GOP Presidential primary a second time, Trump still gets the largest percentage of the vote (although still only 29%), double than the number who think Cruz would have been the best pick (14%) and almost three times the number of those who chose Marco Rubio (10%).  No other Republican received more than 10% in the poll.

Unfortunately, the results for the other side of the Presidential race are not nearly so likely to cause Democrats to become downhearted.  A majority (53%) of them still think Clinton was the best option for their party.  True, it is slightly less than the number who thought this in June (56%), but still considerably more than those who think Hillary wasn't the best alternative (37%).  In addition, if Democratic voters were granted a do-over, the results would be about the same as in the actual contest, a slight edge to Clinton over Bernie Sanders (47-42 percent).  For what it's worth, Clinton did slightly better in the poll taken in June (50%) while Sanders support grew considerably since then (42% percent now, 29% in June.)

Still, it is hard not to draw the conclusion that Republicans are considerably less enthusiastic about their nominee than are the Democrats about theirs, although both parties are undoubtedly less excited about their candidates than they have been in many a past Presidential election year.  As has been said before, it is hard to see how two candidates with such negative ratings from the electorate can be elected, but one of them has to be.  There are only two sides to a coin, after all.

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