Subscribe to our mailing list

What Topic Matters Most To You?
View Privacy Policy

QUICK TAKE: Good Signs For Trump’s Rust Belt Strategy?

Donald Trump’s poll numbers vs. Hillary Clinton are less than stellar, but he’s gaining in a number of Rust Belt states key to his strategy.

Is Trump shifting on immigration?

The conventional wisdom in Washington is that Donald Trump’s campaign is in a rut and sinking; national polls still show Hillary Clinton with a big lead. But recent state polls are proving that Trump’s Rust Belt strategy may still be intact, offering him a (narrow) path to victory.

A Monmouth poll in Wisconsin released Wednesday showed Trump down only five points to Clinton (43-38); he’s outperforming Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI)’s deficit by eight (54-41). This echoes a slate of Emerson polls that show Trump tied with Clinton in Ohio (43-43) and within striking distance in Michigan (down five).

These current numbers have Trump outperforming Mitt Romney’s final deficit in Wisconsin by two (Romney lost 53-46), Ohio by three (Romney lost 51-48), and Michigan by four (Romney lost 54-45).

Now, Trump’s chances are tempered by two factors: 1) Clinton-Kaine are playing in the Midwest, with the VP “barnstorming the industrial Midwest” in early August, and 2) the state of play in Pennsylvania, where Clinton’s polling average is a steady +8.0%, despite a Thursday Franklin & Marshall poll showing Trump gaining four points on Clinton in PA.

With Trump losing ground in traditional swing states like Virginia, North Carolina, and Colorado, the Rust Belt will be key to a victory. Recent polls suggest not all hope is lost for the Trump campaign.