Wednesday, April 13, 2016
The Republican Party's 2016 Electoral Dilemma
Yesterday, I posted about a Rasmussen Poll showing the number of people who would not vote Republican if Donald Trump was heading the ticket. Now NBC News has done an even more specific poll. They asked the supporters of both Donald Trump and Ted Cruz who they would vote for if the other was the party's nominee.
Note that only 56% of Cruz supporters said they would vote for Trump in November, and only 53% of Trump supporters said they would vote for Cruz in November. Those are some pretty troubling figures for Republicans -- especially considering that these two candidates have the support of a huge majority of the Republican base.
Can the Republican Party unite after their convention. I seriously doubt it. Trump and his supporters genuinely hate Ted Cruz, and Cruz and his supporters are disgusted at the idea of Trump being the nominee. Some may hold their nose and vote Republican anyway, but I really believe a substantial portion will vote third party or stay at home -- and either scenario spells disaster for the Republicans in November.
There is still talk of a "white knight" being chosen in a deadlocked convention -- someone who is neither Trump nor Cruz, and could unite the party. Who would that be? I just don't see anyone who could come in at this late date and unite both Trump and Cruz supporters -- not even Paul Ryan (who said yesterday that he would not accept the nomination if offered).
This electoral mess has got to be causing many sleepless nights for GOP leaders.
The NBC News|SurveyMonkey Weekly Election Tracking poll was conducted online April 4 through April 10, 2016 among a national sample of 12,692 adults aged 18 and over, including 11,204 who say they are registered to vote. Respondents for this non-probability survey were selected from the nearly three million people who take surveys on the SurveyMonkey platform each day. Results have an error estimate of plus or minus 1.3 percentage points. A full description of our methodology and the poll can be found here.