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Swing Toward The Democrats

Wednesday, Oct. 28, 2020

But most voters still expect Trump to win

West Long Branch, NJ – The race for Georgia’s electoral votes remains very close, but Joe Biden has gained ground on Donald Trump in the latest Monmouth (“Mon-muth”) University Poll. Democrats have also improved their standing in the two U.S. Senate races, erasing a GOP lead in the regularly scheduled contest and leaving two Republicans fighting for a spot in the special election runoff.

Among all registered voters in Georgia, Biden is supported by 50% and Trump is supported by 45%. Another 2% say they will vote for Libertarian Jo Jorgensen and 2% are undecided. These results represent a small swing in the Democrat’s favor, but the numbers are not statistically different from Trump’s single point edge last month (47% to 46% for Biden) or the tied result in July (47% each).

Similarly, the shifts in Monmouth’s likely voter models+ are not statistically significant, but they do show Biden with a nominal lead for the first time. In a high turnout model, Biden has 50% support and Trump has 46%. Trump led in this model by 2 points in September and one point in July. The race is tighter using a lower turnout model at 50% Biden and 48% Trump, whereas the incumbent led by 3 to 5 points in this model in prior polls. Trump won Georgia by five points in 2016.

More than half (58%) of registered voters in Georgia report having already cast their ballots. Biden leads among this group by 55% to 43%. Trump has a 48% to 44% edge, though, among those who have yet to vote. When the sample is put into different likely voter models, Trump pulls further ahead among the vote that is still outstanding – 53% to 41% for Biden in a high turnout scenario and 59% to 36% at a lower level of turnout.

“Trump is likely to win the Election Day vote. The question is by how much. The Democratic voters left on the table at this point tend to be less engaged and thus harder to turn out. So, it is still possible for Trump to make up his deficit in the early vote,” said Patrick Murray, director of the independent Monmouth University Polling Institute.

Despite Biden’s consistent lead in the national polls, though, Georgia voters are more likely to expect Trump (51%) will win a second term. Just 42% believe the challenger will emerge victorious.

GEORGIA: PRESIDENT VOTER MODELS
 Registered
voters
High likely
turnout
Low likely
turnout
October   
Trump45%46%48%
Biden50%50%50%
    
September   
Trump47%48%50%
Biden46%46%45%
    
July   
Trump47%48%49%
Biden47%47%46%
 Source:  Monmouth University Poll, Oct. 23-27, 2020

Trump maintains an advantage among Georgia voters aged 65 and older – leading Biden by 58% to 42% now, versus 61% to 36% in September. This is noteworthy because Biden has led among senior voters both nationally and in the other swing states Monmouth has polled in the past month. However, Biden is able to offset his deficit in Georgia with support from younger voters, who make up a relatively larger share of the electorate here than in other swing states. He currently holds a 54% to 40% lead over Trump among voters under 50 years old, up from his 47% to 42% lead with this group last month.

Biden maintains an advantage in 14 swing counties* where the vote margins were closest in the 2016 presidential election. He leads Trump among registered voters in these counties by 55% to 35%, similar to his 54% to 34% margin in September. He is also holding steady in counties that went solidly for Hillary Clinton in 2016 (71% to 27% now, versus 70% to 24% las month). Trump has a strong 64% to 33% lead in the counties he won handily four years ago, but this is not quite as wide as last month (71% to 25%).

“Biden seems to have made some inroads in deep red parts of Georgia. He won’t win these areas, but he can carry the state if he is able to get close to a third of the vote there,” said Murray.

– Senate contests –

Republican incumbent David Perdue has lost his lead in Georgia’s regularly scheduled U.S. Senate election. Among all registered voters, Democratic challenger Jon Ossoff is backed by 49% and 46% support Perdue. Libertarian Shane Hazel earns 2% and 2% are undecided. Perdue led by 6 points among registered voters in prior Monmouth polls (48% to 42% in September and 49% to 43% in July). Among voters who have already cast their ballots, Ossoff holds a 54% to 43% lead. Among those yet to vote, Perdue has a 51% to 42% edge.

The race is close among likely voters. Ossoff holds an insignificant 2-point lead over Perdue (49% to 47%) in a high turnout scenario while the race is virtually tied using a lower turnout model (49% to 48%). However, just one month ago, Perdue held anywhere from a 5-point (high turnout) to 8-point (low turnout) lead depending on the likely voter model.

GEORGIA: SENATE VOTER MODELS
Regular electionRegistered
voters
High likely
turnout
Low likely
turnout
October   
Perdue (R-i)46%47%48%
Ossoff (D)49%49%49%
    
September   
Perdue (R-i)48%48%50%
Ossoff (D)42%43%42%
    
July   
Perdue (R-i)49%50%51%
Ossoff (D)43%43%43%
 Source:  Monmouth University Poll, Oct. 23-27, 2020

The other Senate seat will be decided by a special election, featuring a blanket primary with 20 listed candidates on the November ballot. Democrat Raphael Warnock has pulled into a clear lead, with 41% support among registered voters, up from 21% in September and just 9% in July. Warnock’s chief Democratic rival Matt Lieberman has 4% support, down from 11% last month and 14% in the summer.

The battle for second place is very close between two Republicans. Incumbent Kelly Loeffler, who was appointed to the seat earlier this year, has 21% support and Congressman Doug Collins has 18%. This is similar to their standing in September (23% Loeffler and 22% Collins) and July (26% Loeffler and 20% Collins). The current placement of the top candidates in these registered voter results – Warnock, followed by Loeffler and Collins – is nearly identical in Monmouth’s likely voter models.

“Loeffler and Collins are now battling it out for a spot in the runoff. It may come down to who is seen as the stronger Trump loyalist among Republican voters,” said Murray.

Overall, 33% of Georgia voters say Loeffler is more supportive of President Trump while 12% say Collins is the bigger Trump booster. Another 31% say both are equally supportive of Trump. Among Trump backers in the presidential contest, 34% say Loeffler is the stronger Trump supporter while 19% say it is Collins, and 30% say both are equally supportive.

A runoff election will be held between the two highest vote earners if no candidate achieves an outright majority next week. Warnock currently holds a head-to-head lead against both Republicans among registered voters – 49% to 41% against Loeffler and 51% to 39% against Collins. The runoff will almost certainly see lower turnout than next week’s general election. The race is closer among those most likely to vote in a January runoff, but the Democrat maintains a lead – either 51% Warnock to 45% Loeffler or 52% Warnock to 45% Collins.

GEORGIA: SENATE VOTER MODELS
Special electionRegistered
voters
High likely
turnout
Low likely
turnout
October   
Loeffler (R-i)21%22%22%
Collins (R)18%19%20%
Warnock (D)41%41%42%
    
September   
Loeffler (R-i)23%23%23%
Collins (R)22%23%24%
Warnock (D)21%23%25%
    
July   
Loeffler (R-i)26%26%26%
Collins (R)20%21%22%
Warnock (D)9%10%10%
 Source:  Monmouth University Poll, Oct. 23-27, 2020

 “The fight for a spot in the runoff has gotten nastier between the two GOP candidates. And the main beneficiary appears to be the Democrat,” said Murray.

The Monmouth University Poll was conducted by telephone from October 23 to 27, 2020 with 504 Georgia registered voters. The question results in this release have a margin of error of +/- 4.4 percentage points. The poll was conducted by the Monmouth University Polling Institute in West Long Branch, NJ.

  +   Monmouth’s likely voter models for the 2020 election are not forecasts. They are designed to present a range of reasonable outcomes based on voter intentions as of this moment (including ballots already cast as well as potential for undercounting among certain demographic groups due to election administration issues). Each registered voter is assigned a probabilistic weight between 0 and 1, based primarily on past voting history, with adjustments for self-reported likelihood to vote, motivation and other factors. Further adjustments are applied to the aggregate sample based on turnout propensities among different demographic groups (e.g. by race, gender, education).

  * 2016 presidential margin by county groupings:

Swing (21% of turnout) – 14 counties where the winning margin for either candidate was less than 10 points, with a cumulative vote of 49.6% Clinton and 46.0% Trump.

Clinton (34% of turnout) – 22 counties Clinton won by more than 10 points, with a cumulative vote of 68.8% to 27.7%.

Trump (45% of turnout) – 123 counties Trump won by more than 10 points, with a cumulative vote of 70.1% to 26.6%.

QUESTIONS AND RESULTS     

(* Some columns may not add to 100% due to rounding.)

[Note: Voters who report already casting their ballots were asked, “In the election for X, did you vote for…” for Q1 and Q4-5.]

1.If the election for President was today, would you vote for … Donald Trump the Republican, Joe Biden the Democrat, or Jo Jorgensen the Libertarian? [NAMES WERE ROTATED] [If UNDECIDED: If you had to vote for one of the following candidates at this moment, who do you lean toward – Donald Trump or Joe Biden?]

TREND: REGISTERED VOTERS (with leaners)Oct.
2020
Sept.
2020
July
2020
Donald Trump45%47%47%
Joe Biden50%46%47%
Jo Jorgensen2%2%3%
(VOL) Other candidate1%0%<1%
(VOL) No one<1%<1%0%
(VOL) Undecided2%4%3%
(n)(504)(402)(402)

[1A.  If Trump/Biden voter, ASK: Are you certain about your vote choice, or might you change your mind before election day?]

[QUESTIONS 2 & 3 WERE ROTATED]

2.What is the likelihood that you might vote for Donald Trump – very likely, somewhat likely, not too likely, or not at all likely?

TREND: REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
Sept.
2020
July
2020
Certain for Trump (from Q1/A)43%42%42%
Very likely 1%2%1%
Somewhat likely 2%6%7%
Not too likely2%3%4%
Not at all likely51%44%45%
(VOL) Don’t know1%3%2%
(n)(504)(402)(402)

3.What is the likelihood that you might vote for Joe Biden – very likely, somewhat likely, not too likely, or not at all likely?

TREND: REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
Sept.
2020
July
2020
Certain for Biden (from Q1/A)47%40%39%
Very likely 2%3%3%
Somewhat likely 3%7%9%
Not too likely0%1%4%
Not at all likely47%46%44%
(VOL) Don’t know1%3%2%
(n)(504)(402)(402)

As you may know, there are two Senate seats on the ballot this November.

4.In the regularly scheduled race, if the election for U.S. Senate was today, would you vote for … David Perdue the Republican, Jon Ossoff the Democrat, or Shane Hazel the Libertarian? [NAMES WERE ROTATED] [If UNDECIDED: If you had to vote for one of the following candidates at this moment, who do you lean toward – David Perdue or Jon Ossoff?]

TREND: REGISTERED VOTERS (with leaners)Oct.
2020
Sept.
2020
July
2020
David Perdue46%48%49%
Jon Ossoff49%42%43%
Shane Hazel2%4%1%
(VOL) Other<1%<1%0%
(VOL) No one<1%<1%<1%
(VOL) Undecided2%6%7%
(n)(504)(402)(402)

5.The other U.S. Senate race is a special election where all the candidates run on the same ballot. If that election was today, would you vote for … Republican Kelly Loeffler, Republican Doug Collins, Democrat Raphael Warnock, Democrat Matt Lieberman, Democrat Ed Tarver, Libertarian Brian Slowinski, or another candidate? [NAMES WERE ROTATED] [If UNDECIDED: If you had to vote for one of the following candidates at this moment, who do you lean toward –Loeffler, Collins, Warnock, Lieberman, or Tarver?]

TREND: REGISTERED VOTERS (with leaners)Oct.
2020
Sept.
2020
July
2020
Kelly Loeffler (R)21%23%26%
Doug Collins (R)18%22%20%
Raphael Warnock (D)41%21%9%
Matt Lieberman (D)4%11%14%
Ed Tarver (D)3%4%5%
Brian Slowinski (L)2%3%3%
Other candidate4%3%5%
(VOL) No one1%<1%0%
(VOL) Undecided6%13%18%
(n)(504)(402)(402)

6.There will be a run-off for the special Senate election in early January. How likely are you to vote in the run-off election – are you absolutely certain to vote, almost certain, likely, not likely, or are you unsure?

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
Absolutely certain60%
Almost certain 15%
Likely 9%
Not likely to vote4%
Unsure12%
(n)(504)

[QUESTIONS 7A & 7B WERE ROTATED]

7A.Who would you vote for if the run-off election was between … Kelly Loeffler the Republican and Raphael Warnock the Democrat? [NAMES WERE ROTATED]

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
Kelly Loeffler41%
Raphael Warnock49%
(VOL) Undecided4%
(VOL) No one/not vote6%
(n)(504)

7B.Who would you vote for if the run-off election was between … Doug Collins the Republican and Raphael Warnock the Democrat? [NAMES WERE ROTATED]

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
Doug Collins39%
Raphael Warnock51%
(VOL) Undecided4%
(VOL) No one/not vote7%
(n)(504)

8.Which candidate would you say is more supportive of President Trump – Kelly Loeffler, Doug Collins, both of them equally, or neither of them? [NAMES WERE ROTATED]

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
Kelly Loeffler33%
Doug Collins12%
Both equally31%
Neither10%
(VOL) Don’t know15%
(n)(504)

9.In the other Senate race, which candidate understands the day to day concerns of people like you – David Perdue, Jon Ossoff, both of them, or neither of them? [NAMES WERE ROTATED]

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
David Perdue39%
Jon Ossoff39%
Both3%
Neither16%
(VOL) Don’t know3%
(n)(504)

10.Do you feel optimistic or pessimistic about the 2020 presidential election? [Is that very or somewhat optimistic/pessimistic?]

TREND: REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
Sept.
2020
July
2020
Very optimistic38%32%35%
Somewhat optimistic35%35%31%
Somewhat pessimistic10%15%15%
Very pessimistic12%14%11%
(VOL) Neither, don’t care2%2%5%
(VOL) Don’t know4%3%4%
(n)(504)(402)(402)

11.How motivated are you to vote in the election for president – very motivated, somewhat motivated, or not that motivated?

TREND: REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
Sept.
2020
July
2020
Very motivated86%90%83%
Somewhat motivated9%8%12%
Not that motivated4%2%5%
(VOL) Don’t know1%0%0%
(n)(504)(402)(402)

12.Compared to past elections, are you more enthusiastic than usual, less enthusiastic, or about the same as past elections?

TREND: REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
Sept.
2020
July
2020
More enthusiastic52%49%38%
Less enthusiastic11%14%15%
About the same36%37%46%
(VOL) Don’t know2%0%1%
(n)(504)(402)(402)

13.For each of the following situations please tell me if it personally worries you a lot, a little, or not at all?  [ITEMS WERE ROTATED]

Knowing you will have access to medical care if you need it

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
A lot44%
A little24%
Not at all32%
(VOL) Don’t know0%
(n)(504)

Knowing you will have a stable income over the next year

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
A lot43%
A little25%
Not at all31%
(VOL) Don’t know1%
(n)(504)

The possible breakdown of law and order

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
A lot58%
A little22%
Not at all18%
(VOL) Don’t know1%
(n)(504)

The coronavirus pandemic

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
A lot55%
A little25%
Not at all19%
(VOL) Don’t know1%
(n)(504)

[QUESTIONS 14-17 WERE ROTATED]

14.Who do you trust more to keep health care affordable and accessible – Donald Trump or Joe Biden, or both equally?

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
Donald Trump38%
Joe Biden48%
Both equally9%
(VOL) Neither3%
(VOL) Don’t know0%
(n)(504)

15.Who do you trust more on creating jobs and strengthening the economy – Donald Trump or Joe Biden, or both equally?

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
Donald Trump49%
Joe Biden39%
Both equally9%
(VOL) Neither3%
(VOL) Don’t know0%
(n)(504)

16.Who do you trust more on maintaining law and order – Donald Trump or Joe Biden, or both equally?

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
Donald Trump46%
Joe Biden41%
Both equally9%
(VOL) Neither4%
(VOL) Don’t know0%
(n)(504)

17.Who do you trust more on handling the coronavirus pandemic – Donald Trump or Joe Biden, or both equally?

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
Donald Trump37%
Joe Biden49%
Both equally8%
(VOL) Neither5%
(VOL) Don’t know1%
(n)(504)

18.How will you vote this year – in person on Election Day, in person at an early voting location, or by mail ballot? [If ALREADY VOTED: How did you vote this year…?]

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
In person on Election Day18%
In person at an early voting location56%
By mail ballot24%
(VOL) Won’t vote at all1%
(VOL) Don’t know2%
(n)(504)

19.Overall, how confident are you that the election will be conducted fairly and accurately – very confident, somewhat confident, not too confident, or not at all confident?

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
Very confident24%
Somewhat confident47%
Not too confident17%
Not at all confident12%
(VOL) Don’t know1%
(n)(504)

20.Regardless of who you support now, who do you think will win the presidential election this year –  Donald Trump or Joe Biden? [NAMES WERE ROTATED]

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
Donald Trump51%
Joe Biden42%
(VOL) Don’t know7%
(n)(504)

21.In the past week, have you been contacted by a political campaign via phone, text or email urging you to vote or support a particular candidate? [If YES: How many times has this happened in the past week – more than once a day, about once a day, or less often?]

REGISTERED VOTERSOct.
2020
Yes, more than once a day37%
Yes, about once a day24%
Yes, less often9%
(VOL) Yes, but not sure how often2%
No, have not been contacted28%
(VOL) Don’t know0%
(n)(504)

METHODOLOGY

The Monmouth University Poll was sponsored and conducted by the Monmouth University Polling Institute from October 23 to 27, 2020 with a statewide random sample of 504 Georgia voters drawn from a list of registered voters. This includes 160 contacted by a live interviewer on a landline telephone and 344 contacted by a live interviewer on a cell phone, in English. Monmouth is responsible for all aspects of the survey design, data weighting and analysis. The full sample is weighted for party primary vote history, age, gender, race, education, and region based on state voter registration list information and U.S. Census information (CPS 2018 supplement). Data collection support provided by Braun Research (field) and Aristotle (voter sample). For results based on the full voter sample, one can say with 95% confidence that the error attributable to sampling has a maximum margin of plus or minus 4.4 percentage points (unadjusted for sample design). Sampling error can be larger for sub-groups (see table below). In addition to sampling error, one should bear in mind that question wording and practical difficulties in conducting surveys can introduce error or bias into the findings of opinion polls.

DEMOGRAPHICS (weighted)
REGISTERED VOTERS
 
Party primary history
37% Republican
31% Other/none
32% Democrat
 
Self-Reported Party
36% Republican
34% Independent
30% Democrat
 
46% Male
54% Female
 
26% 18-34
25% 35-49
26% 50-64
23% 65+
 
63% White, non-Hispanic
30% Black
  5% Hispanic
  1% Asian
  1% Other race
 
66% No degree
34% 4 year degree
 

Click on pdf file link below for full methodology and crosstabs by key demographic groups.

Download this Poll Report with crosstabs