AP-GfK Poll: Majority fears a Trump victory
NEW YORK — More than half the country fears a Donald Trump presidency. And only about one-third of Americans believe he is at least somewhat qualified to serve in the White House.
In the final sprint to Election Day, a new Associated Press-GfK poll underscores those daunting roadblocks for Donald Trump as he tries to overtake Hillary Clinton.
Most voters oppose the hard-line approach to immigration that is a centerpiece of the billionaire businessman’s campaign. They are more likely to trust Clinton to handle a variety of issues facing the country, and Trump has no advantage on the national security topics also at the forefront of his bid.
Trump has a passionate base of support, seen among the thousands who fill the stands at his signature rallies. But most people don’t share that fervor. Only 29 percent of registered voters would be excited and 24 percent would be proud should Trump prevail in November.
Only 1 in 4 voters find him even somewhat civil or compassionate, and a third say he’s not at all racist.
“We as Americans have always been able to look at the wacky leaders of other countries and say ‘Phew, that’s not us.’ We couldn’t if Trump wins,” said Michael DeLuise, 66, a retired university vice president and registered Republican who lives in Eugene, Ore.
The nation is sour on Clinton too.
Only 39 percent of voters have a favorable view of the Democratic nominee, compared to the 56 percent who view her unfavorably. Less than a third say they would be excited should she move into the White House.
“I think she’s an extremely dishonest person and have extreme disdain for her and her husband,” said one registered Republican, Denise Pettitte, 36, from Watertown, Wis. “I think it would be wonderful to elect a woman, but a different woman.”
But as poorly as voters may view Clinton, they think even less of Trump.
Forty-four percent say they would be afraid if Clinton, the former secretary of state, is elected, far less than say the same of Trump. He’s viewed more unfavorably than favorably by a 61 percent to 34 percent margin, and more say their unfavorable opinion of the New Yorker is a strong one than say the same of Clinton, 50 percent to 44 percent.
That disdain for both prompts three-quarters of voters to say a big reason they’ll be casting their ballot is to stop someone, rather than elect someone.
Roughly half of voters see Clinton as at least somewhat qualified, while 30 percent say Trump is.
Even when it comes to what may be Clinton’s greatest weakness, the perception that she is dishonest, Trump fails to perform muchbetter: 71 percent say she’s only slightly or not at all honest, while 66 percent say the same of Trump. Forty-nine percent say Clinton is at least somewhat corrupt, but 43 percent say that of Trump.
“Whatever her problems are, they don’t even come close to him,” said JoAnn Dinkelman, 66, a Republican from Rancho Cucamonga, Calif., who will cross party lines and vote for Clinton. “Everything that comes out of his mouth that is factchecked turns out to be a lie.
Trump finds no respite with voters whenit comes to what he vows to do as president, either. Nearly 6 in 10 oppose his promise to build a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico.
Voters say they trust Clinton over Trump by wide margins when it comes to health care, race relations and negotiations with Russia. She also narrowly tops Trump when it comes to filling Supreme Court vacancies, as well as another of the billionaire’s signature issues: handling international trade.
The AP-GfK Poll of 1,694 adults, including 1,476 registered voters, was conducted online Sept. 15-19. The margin of sampling error for all respondents is plus or minus 2.5 percentage points, and for registered voters plus or minus 2.7 points.
According to a new poll, three-quarters of voters say they’ll cast a ballot to stop, rather than elect, someone.