Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Florida Voters not Buying Trump's Birther Con

We've heard so much lately about how much trouble Hillary is in. Just recently a lot of prognosticators like Larry Sabato have updated their forecasts for a closer race.

The irony is, that this might all be in the rearview mirror already. The Trump momentum may well have ended in early September. But last week with her health scare imputed a lot of short term noise into the polls.

FiveThirtyEight gives Trump the edge in Florida currently. But a new Monmouth poll shows her with a 5 point lead among likely voters-the same margin Survey Monkey gives her nationally.


"Florida HRC 46 (was 48 in Aug) DJT 41 (was 39) "

"#FLSen Rubio 47 (was 48) Murphy 45 (was 43"

So according to Monmouth, Rubio is no shoo in either.

The best news? Floridians are not as stupid as Trump needs them to be, needs us all to be:

"Hillary Clinton holds a 5 point lead over Donald Trump in the crucial swing state of Florida. This is slightly less than the 9 point lead she held in a Monmouth University Pollof Sunshine State voters taken last month. Sen. Marco Rubio is currently locked in a tight race with his Democratic challenger Patrick Murphy, ahead by a statistically insignificant 2 points after leading by 5 in August. The poll also found that voters are skeptical of Trump's recent attempt to draw a line under the Pres. Obama birther controversy."

Part of what has enabled Trump to get closer is since he brought in Kellyann Conway, he's had more message discipline. He was perhaps able to reassure some suburban whites that maybe he's not a racist after all. But the reopening of the birther furor may well set back that effort.

"Most Florida voters (75%) have heard about Trump's recent admission that Barack Obama was born in the United States, but they doubt the GOP nominee's sincerity. Only 24% think that Trump actually believes Obama is a natural born citizen, while the majority (54%) say Trump only made the statement for political reasons."

"Trump also implicated Hillary Clinton in starting the birther controversy back in 2008. More Florida voters do not believe she had a role in it (47%) than say she did (35%). While most voters (76%) say this recent flap will have no impact on their vote, 18% say Trump's statement makes them less likely to vote for him and just 4% say it makes them more likely."

"If Trump wanted to put an end to his role in the birther controversy with his statement on Friday, it does not seem to have had the intended effect," said Murray.

As other polls have show, her favorables inched up in Monmouth too.

"Florida voters' opinion of the two candidates has remained stable over the past month. Only 32% have a favorable opinion of Trump and 56% hold an unfavorable view of him. This is similar to his August rating of 33% favorable and 54% unfavorable. Nearly 4-in-10 voters (38%) have a favorable opinion of Clinton and 49% hold an unfavorable view of her. Her rating stood at 36% favorable and 50% unfavorable last month."

No one is buying his absurd birther spins. We looked at Stephen Colbert's epic takedown in an earlier piece.

Believe it or not, I think this could have a real negative impact for Trump. Colbert is a comedian not a political operative-though he played one on his old show.

As far as normalizing him-or the opposite of normalizing him-shows like Colbert's can have a bigger impact on undecideds, middle of the readers, indies, etc, aa a lot of people watching this are not political animals like me and quite possibly you.

For people who haven't made up their minds yet or who are on the fence, this may well push them away from Trump. It's very hard for a candidate for POTUS to be fodder like this for late night comics.

I certainly appreciate Colbert compared with Jimmy Kimmel's playing with Trump's hair.

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