Wake Up To Politics - Brunch Edition - Whiteboard Wednesday
Wednesday, November 25, 2015 Good (late) morning! This will be the last posting for Wake Up To Politics this week. Since there's not much news pre-Thanksgiving, all I have for you is Whiteboard Wednesday, my weekly update on the presidential race! Have a great Thanksgiving everyone, and I'll be back in your inbox Monday!
Below, you see the ranking of the 2016 candidates according to an average of the national polls conducted on the presidential race. Each candidate is represented by a logo; next to their logo is their average percentage in brown, next to that is their gain/loss from last week's average. Green represents a gain, red represents a loss, purple represents an average the same as last week. See the whiteboard below, and my analysis under that.
Donald Trump's 5-point bump this week is not only the largest increase among his GOP rivals, it's the only increase. As he has is every whiteboard this cycle, Trump remains atop the Republican field: but this is his first time at or above 30%. Trump is maintaining his frontrunner status; in fact, he is expanding on his lead. Below him, the race remains mostly the same. Four candidates (Rubio, Bush, Fiorina, Paul) did not move at all from last week; the others lose 0.5 or 1 percentage points. At the very bottom, Christie, Kasich, and Paul are engaged in a three-way tie for 8th place - with 2.5% each, about the same amount of voters they draw each week. Stuck at the bottom of the race, and with no signs of gaining, it is becoming increasingly hard to see how the trio can stay in the race much longer. Even how Bush, Fiorina, and Huckabee can - with 3-5 points each, and also no movement. At the top, the same foursome are the only candidates with double-digits, and even they are not moving much. Except, of course, for Trump - whose 5% gain may not seem that big, unless you recognize that it equals the support of the governors of New Jersey and Ohio...combined. This is roughly the same standings we've seen for the past few weeks, and probably will see until Iowa. Now, more than ever, Trump seems the prohibitive favorite for the nomination.
This week's Democratic race portrayed in the whiteboard is also nearly identical to past weeks. Clinton is far ahead of her two rivals, hovering around 50%; with Sanders around 30%, and O'Malley taking just a few percentage points. Notably, both Clinton and Sanders gain this week - with Clinton nearing the 60% mark, and Sanders getting above 30%. If Clinton keeps up her pattern of increases, 3/5 support among the party may be the point when she gets her inevitability back. Sanders and O'Malley will have to come to grips with this eventually, but not anytime soon. There's still 2 months until Iowa, and the possibility of convincing undecideds before then. This whiteboard paints a unfavorable picture for Sanders and O'Malley, but not an insurmountable one yet. Sanders, at least, could still win Iowa or New Hampshire - and O'Malley will get a few delegates. Like the GOP, this race won't be closed until voting starts - but Clinton seems to be inching towards slamming it shut.
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For more on Wake Up To Politics, listen to Gabe on NPR's "Talk of the Nation, the Political Junkie podcast, and St. Louis Public Radio; watch Gabe on MSNBC's "Up with Steve Kornacki, and read about Gabe in Politico, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the Globe, and the St. Louis Jewish Light