Democrats see political opportunity in Trump’s decision to abandon Paris climate deal


President Trump’s triumphant Rose Garden ceremony announcing his withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement sent a message loud and clear to his supporters: Promise kept.

But the move also served as a clarion call to angry Democrats, potentially complicating the political path for Republicans facing tough midterm challenges and, ultimately, Trump’s own reelection bid.

Trump, whose approval rating has hovered around 40 percent for most of his presidency, probably did not gain new converts with his decision, and Democrats now see an opportunity to further intensify the focus of their base in the 2018 midterm elections. They also foresee the climate-change decision as a key part of their broader argument to college-educated swing voters who have been among Trump’s weakest supporters.

“He’s unleashed a number of forces that I don’t think he understands that ultimately are going to work against him,” said Tad Devine, a longtime political strategist and former adviser to the presidential run of Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont. “People are interpreting this not as my house is going to be flooded tomorrow, but our federal government is being run by people who don’t care about science.”

Trump’s gamble could pay off. If the pace of economic growth quickens and jobs return for his core supporters, he could point to the decision to exit the accord as proof of his leadership, his backers say.

Trump 41%, Clinton 39%

Last week, Rasmussen Reports gave voters the option of staying home on Election Day if Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are the big party nominees, and six percent (6%) said that’s what they intend to do for now. Clinton and Trump were tied with 38% support each; 16% said they would vote for some other candidate, and two percent (2%) were undecided.

But Trump edges slightly ahead if the stay-at-home option is removed. Trump also now does twice as well among Democrats as Clinton does among Republicans.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey of Likely U.S. Voters finds Trump with 41% support to Clinton’s 39%. Fifteen percent (15%) prefer some other candidate, and five percent (5%) are undecided. (To see survey question wording, click here.)

This is the first time Trump has led the matchup since last October. Clinton held a 41% to 36% advantage in early March.

Trump now has the support of 73% of Republicans, while 77% of Democrats back Clinton. But Trump picks up 15% of Democrats, while just eight percent (8%) of GOP voters prefer Clinton, given this matchup. Republicans are twice as likely to prefer another candidate.

Among voters not affiliated with either major party, Trump leads 37% to 31%, but 23% like another candidate. Nine percent (9%) are undecided.

(Want a free daily e-mail update? If it’s in the news, it’s in our polls).  Rasmussen Reports updates are also available on Twitter or Facebook.

The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on April 27-28, 2016 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

Ninety-one percent (91%) of Democrats now say Clinton is likely to be their party’s nominee. Eighty-nine percent (89%) of Republicans see Trump as the likely GOP nominee.

Trump leads 48% to 35% among men but trails Clinton by a similar 44% to 34% among women.

Clinton’s narrow 38% to 32% lead among those under 40, traditionally a reliable Democratic group, suggests that younger voters will be a big target in the upcoming campaigning. Twenty-five percent (25%) of these voters like another candidate for now, and five percent (5%) are undecided. Trump has a small advantage among older voters.

Clinton earns 71% of the black vote, 45% support among other minority voters but just 33% of whites. Trump gets only nine percent (9%) of blacks, 33% of other minorities and 48% of white voters.

Most Republicans Feel Embarrassed by Campaign, Poll Says

Alarmed by the harsh attacks and negative tone of their presidential contest, broad majorities of Republican primary voters view their party as divided and a source of embarrassment and think that the campaign is more negative than in the past, according to a New York Times/CBS News national poll released on Monday.

The dismay has not set back their leading candidate, however. While about four in 10 Republican voters disapprove of how Donald J. Trump has handled the violence at some of his rallies, Mr. Trump has also picked up the most support recently as several rivals have left the race. Forty-six percent of primary voters said they would like to see Mr. Trump as the party’s nominee, more than at any point since he declared his candidacy in June. Twenty-six percent favored Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, and 20 percent backed Gov. John Kasich of Ohio.

Fully three-quarters of Republican primary voters expect Mr. Trump to be their party’s nominee.

Compared with Republicans, far more Democratic primary voters see their side as unified and say the campaign has made them feel mostly proud of their party.

Yet Democrats are more sharply divided over their candidates. Hillary Clinton has only a slight edge over Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, and growing numbers of Democratic primary voters are more excited about Mr. Sanders as their possible nominee. In the past month, the level of enthusiasm for Mrs. Clinton among Democratic voters has fallen eight percentage points to 40 percent, while it has grown for Mr. Sanders by 12 percentage points to 56 percent. Still, more than seven in 10 Democratic voters expect Mrs. Clinton to win the nomination.

He Can’t Win: Clinton crushing Trump by 33% among millennials


If Republicans want to surrender the 2016 election, there’s an easy path: nominate Donald Trump.

In fact, not only would Republicans lose in 2016, they could struggle in elections for a generation. Here’s the simple truth: millennials overwhelmingly do not like Donald Trump.

In the latest USA TODAY/Rock the Vote poll, Hillary Clinton (who is losing millennials to Bernie Sanders) leads Trump among voters ages 18 to 35 — Clinton winning 52 percent to Trump’s 19 percent.

That’s right, Trump doesn’t even break 20 percent among the nation’s largest demographic. A recent CNN/ORC poll confirmed these numbers, showing 73 percent of millennials disapprove of Trump.

Three-in-four millennials disapprove of Trump, and only 19 percent would vote for him. That’s much worse than John McCain in 2008 or Mitt Romney in 2012.

In 2016, millennials will be the largest generation of eligible voters. In 2020 and 2024, they will dominate the electoral process as baby boomers age. Unless Trump can dramatically change his image among next-generation voters, he has no path to victory. That’s why poll after poll after poll shows Trump losing to Hillary Clinton in the general election. The latest poll shows him losing the general election to Clinton by 13 percent.

Here’s the problem for Trump: Yes, he adds some white rural Democrats and independents, but he is losing many more voters than he is bringing in to vote for him.

To attract some non-voters and blue-dog Democrats, Trump is losing millennials, women, and minorities. There simply aren’t enough of the new Trump voters to balance out the vast amounts of voters he is losing.

And before you say any Republican would be losing these groups, remember that Marco Rubio is performing 10 percent better against Clinton than Trump is, according to the RealClearPolitics average. This 10-point gap is mostly driven by Rubio performing better — much better — than Trump in these key demographics.

Democrats Fight for Young Voters in Massachusetts Primary


WELLESLEY, Mass. — Here among the historic brick towers and wooded hills of Hillary Clinton’s alma mater, Wellesley Students for Hillary has a robust campus organization. But so has Wellesley Students for Bernie.

On Thursday night, the pro-Sanders group brought the actress Susan Sarandon to campus and drew nearly 200 people, though many were from outside the college.

“I salute all the women here who are all going to be in hell with me,” Ms. Sarandon said with a smile as she resurrected the admitted blunder proffered this month by former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright (a Wellesley College graduate and Clinton ally) — that there is a special place in hell for women who do not support other women.

Ms. Sarandon’s audience whooped and applauded.

The fervor for Mr. Sanders, a senator from Vermont, among millennials is well known; in the New Hampshire primary, he captured 83 percent of voters between 18 and 29, according to exit polls.

That passion is alive and well in Massachusetts, which will hold its Democratic presidential primary on so-called Super Tuesday this week, but there is a big difference here, and it raises a red flag for Mr. Sanders: While he is swamping Mrs. Clinton among millennials, his grip on them is not as tight as it has been in other states. At the same time, Mrs. Clinton is drawing such strong support among older women here that the polls give her a slight edge on Tuesday.

Bigger narrative to Super Tuesday for Democrats


On Super Tuesday, we will hear from voters in more than 10 states across the nation.

Right now, Hillary Clinton is leading in the majority of the polls, but Sen. Bernie Sanders has shown that he can inspire individuals to actually come out and vote. That’s huge.

When the polls close for Democrats, expect Sanders and Clinton to be optimistic about their chances. Both campaigns will use this as an opportunity to claim victory, win delegates, and in their minds, move closer to potentially securing the Democratic nomination.

There is, however, a bigger narrative that exists.

For Democrats, in general, Super Tuesday represents an opportunity to gain insight into any issues that may play well nationally in the general election and to identify any potential policy weaknesses in Clinton’s message or Sanders’ platform. For Hillary and Bernie, it is more important to use this day as an opportunity to rally the supporters in future states as the race to be the nominee is truly shaping up to be a battle.

But for now, hats off to Sanders, who has done an excellent job of chipping away at the voters Clinton expected to win — the voters that propelled Obama to victory in 2008 and 2012. The question is whether that early success will translate to victories in delegate-rich locations like Pennsylvania, New York or California — places that Democrats must win to keep the White House.

So if Clinton wins in the majority of Super Tuesday states, her campaign can claim that perhaps, this is a sign that her messaging is finally starting to result in decisive victories and also that her incredible lead among superdelgates is justified. But Clinton needs something more than just traditional paths to victory. What her campaign desperately needs is momentum and maybe, just maybe, Super Tuesday will be that boost.

Nevada Democrats start to caucus, as Sanders looks to upset Clinton

Democrats have started caucusing here in Nevada, where Sen. Bernie Sanders is battling Hillary Clinton for supremacy in one of two races Saturday that will test the strength of anti-establishment fervor in the 2016 presidential campaign.

Clinton still enjoys strong support from the Democratic establishment, and her goal in Nevada is to blunt the momentum ­Sanders acquired from a victory in New Hampshire and then move on next week to South Carolina, where she enjoys broad support from African Americans.

In South Carolina earlier Saturday, voters already began casting their ballots in the that state’s Republican primary, which Donald Trump is favored to win. A big Trump victory in the Palmetto State would stamp him clearly as the Republican front-runner, while a Sanders win in Nevada would raise more questions about Clinton’s appeal and add to the pressure on her to score a big victory in South Carolina.