Marquette Poll Finds ‘Slight Change’ in Presidential Race Following Conventions, Kenosha Violence

September 10, 2020 by Reece Nations
Marquette Poll Finds ‘Slight Change’ in Presidential Race Following Conventions, Kenosha Violence
Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden speaks at a campaign event on manufacturing and buying American-made products at UAW Region 1 headquarters in Warren, Mich., Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

MILWAUKEE – Newly released polling data from the Marquette University Law School indicates that voting preferences and attitudes have changed minimally since its last survey in August.

Marquette’s poll in August, conducted before unrest had been caused by shootings and protests in Kenosha, Wis., found former Vice President Joe Biden’s support among voting age respondents to be 49% compared to 44% for President Donald Trump. The university’s most recent poll, conducted from Aug. 30 to Sept. 3, found support among likely voters to be 47% for Biden and 43% for Trump.

Libertarian presidential candidate Jo Jorgensen was also included as a response in Marquette’s most recent poll. Jorgensen’s candidacy was favored by 4% of respondents, while 7% indicated they either didn’t know how they would vote, would prefer to vote for none of these candidates, or declined to say for whom they would vote.

Marquette surveyed 802 registered Wisconsin voters, 688 of which were “likely voters,” according to a release from the university. Each interview was conducted either by cell phone or landline, and the margin of error among likely voter respondents is 4.3 percentage points.

The surveyors also gauged respondents’ feelings towards protests over police shootings of Black Americans. Support for the activism declined among registered Wisconsin voters from June to early August, but dipped only slightly further following the events in Kenosha.

Favorable viewpoints of the Black Lives Matter movement also declined between June and August, yet remained the same around early September. Black Lives Matter was viewed favorably by 59% of respondents in June, which declined to 49% in August and remained there in the latest poll.

Wisconsin voters’ views on President Trump’s handling of nationwide protests rose from 32% to 36% between August and September. Support among Republican respondents for President Trump’s protest response rose by a “statistically significant degree” following his Sept. 1 visit to Kenosha.

Trump’s 42% favorable rating has remained largely the same since June, with either 54% or 55% of respondents rating their view of the president as unfavorable. Biden’s favorability ratings have varied from 42% and 45% since May, with 46% to 48% percent of respondents rating the former vice president unfavorably. 

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