Election season is in full swing, so we decided to take a look at the two candidates that were originally considered frontrunners for their respective parties’ nomination, yet have begun to slip in recent months, Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush.
While Hillary was considered all but a shoe in originally, scandals and missteps have rocked her campaign thus far. The latest Reuters/Ipsos poll shows that her support among Democratic voters fell from 51% to 41% from October 4 to October 9. This comes on the heels of a huge dip in September where Hillary’s support fell to 39%, only eight percentage points above her adversary, Bernie Sanders (Newsweek).
In addition to these steep dips, her overall support in every poll also trends down, signaling possible distress in the Hillary camp (FiveThirtyEight).
Clinton is still the frontrunner, yet Sanders, and even Biden who has yet to announce a campaign, are steadily gaining on her with plenty of time left to catch her. As Nate Cohn of the New York Times writes, “she hasn’t lost ground only among Republicans or Republican-leaning independents, but also among Democratic voters.”
Her ratings are at their lowest point in her entire political career with her net favorability rating specifically dropping at least 15 points lower than it was at this time in 2008 (NYTimes).
While Hillary is still in the lead, the numbers seem to point to a downward spiral for the Democratic candidate, shining the spotlight squarely on Sanders and Biden. We look forward to seeing how they take advantage of the slide tonight!
On the flip side of the coin, we have Jeb Bush, the darling of the Republican establishment, who has pulled in huge amounts of monetary support. Republicans thought that 2016 would be Jeb Bush’s year. Yet, his popularity has consistently declined across the board. A new WSJ/NBC News poll puts his support at only 7% (WSJ).
Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight.com calls out Jeb Bush’s endorsement struggles as a key factor in his decline. Bush can appeal to liberal and moderate Republicans, gaining 16% of the liberal Republicans and 11% of somewhat conservative Republicans, but he has almost no traction among the most conservative party members, garnering only 3% support.
This is especially troubling for the Bush campaign as Republicans are trending more conservative (FiveThirtyEight).
While we don’t expect Jeb to drop out of the race any time soon, as he has raised the most money of any candidate, the future looks grim. Unless he can figure out a way to appeal to a broader range of Republicans, this could be the beginning of the end.
An interesting note to make about these two presidential candidate “frontrunners” is that they are candidates 1 and 2 in terms of money raised. Bush has raised $120 million and Hillary has raised $67.8 million (NYTimes). If the trends outlined above continue as discussed, could this be the presidential election where money is not the single most important predictor of success?
By: Sarah Wright