This year, perhaps more than in any other, we are constantly hearing about polls. The media, fascinated by the rise of Donald Trump, releases each new survey as though reporting on an election outcome of epic proportions. Worse, they take a snippet from the poll, craft a narrative around it, and ignore most of what the poll is actually saying.
Take a look at the newest poll from the New York Times and CBS News. The headline: 80% of Republican voters want party leaders to rally around Trump as the nominee. So you read that and assume that everyone is ready to unify against Hillary Clinton. Great news!
But then you start digging deeper. For instance, 80% of Republican voters also said that the party was divided. 43% said they were depressed about the future of the GOP. But then, two-thirds of those surveyed said that Trump could unite the party. And finally, 30% of voters who backed another candidate in the primaries said they would not come around to vote for Trump.
Now maybe if you parse all of these numbers out, you can find some consistent logic. Good luck.
But if we overlook some of the inconsistencies and we take all of the recent polls together, we can see a clear trend starting to emerge. Trump, merely by outlasting 16 other competitors, is beginning to see a dramatic turnaround in his poll numbers. The momentum that started building the moment he announced his campaign is still rolling forward. The more America sees of Donald Trump, the more they want to vote for him. Or, if you can’t quite accept that, then maybe it’s this: The more people contemplate President Hillary Clinton, the less they despise Trump.
The upward surge has immense implications. If Trump were stagnant in his popularity, Hillary could start cracking open the champagne. The Democrats, together with their cohorts in the media, have undoubtedly packed a war chest full of ammunition they will use against the billionaire this fall. If Trump was hitting a ceiling this early, they would have every reason to be confident.
Sadly for them, that’s not happening. Trump is still growing. His unfavorables are improving. Party leaders are beginning to come around. Voters are beginning to see that he’s not the lunatic the news outlets are trying to make him out to be. None of this makes him immune to the attacks coming his way, but it’s hard to stop a train with a full head of steam.
As many Republicans can attest, you will probably just get run over.