Who are all these people who keep changing their mind about who they will vote for?
Every time I see a new poll on the presidential race indicating a candidate making considerable gains or encountering substantial losses, I can’t help but wonder who all these people are who keep changing their minds. I can’t find one of them.
The election nominating process has been going on for more than a year. There have been debates ahead of the primary. We know pretty much everything about the major party candidates who have secured their party nominations.
The changes following the party conventions are understandable because some people who previously supported a different candidate in the same party automatically move to the nominee’s camp. Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump got the traditional boost following his party’s convention, but it didn’t last. Trump’s habit of insulting anyone who he feels slighted him was good entertainment during the crowded primary field battles, and his supporters love his bully on the playground bravado. But his behavior has also turned off a rather large segment of the voting population, even a lot of Republicans.
Hillary Clinton, the Democrats’ choice, also got a boost from her party’s convention. Most of the Bernie Sanders supporters made the transition to her camp. But Clinton’s negative rating among voters has been well-established too.
So that should be pretty much it. Where we are is where we will end up after the polls close in November. Trump supporters in general are not going to switch and become Clinton supporters. Sure, some politicians locked in heated campaign battles of their own have begun to distance themselves from the party’s presidential nominee, but that is more self-serving than anything else. Among the rank and file voters, there aren’t many who will be changing their mind at this point in the game.
So back to the original question: Where are all these people coming from who are making the polls fluctuate? Are they just messing with the pollsters? Telling them one week they support Clinton, then telling them the next week that they support Trump?
The question I wish these pollsters would start asking is: Are you more inclined or less inclined than in previous elections to stay home and not vote?
That, I believe, is what is going to be the deciding factor.
A lot of Democrats say they would never support Trump, but that they don’t like Clinton either. If you aren’t impressed by your candidate, how motivated are you going to be to go out and vote on Election Day?
I fear the dirt and mud that has marked this election season is only going to get worse as November nears. Both candidates know that their best offense is enhancing people’s dislike for their opponent. Do you really want Trump with his finger on the nuclear button? If that scares you then you better go vote for Hillary. Do you really believe Clinton won’t continue on the same mediocre path that President Barack Obama has been following for eight years? If you don’t want more of the same, you better vote for Trump.
Neither candidate really has a convincing message about why people should vote for them. Political promises are rarely kept, and some of the ones thrown out this campaign, especially from Trump, have been real whoppers. But their main messages have been about why not to vote for the other person, and most people have already made up their mind on who they support … or in some cases who they don’t support.
I don’t want to see any more polls about who people support. I want to see polls about who is going to vote, and who has just given up and plans to stay home because they don’t like the choices.