As the Denver Post’s John Frank reports, beleaguered supporters of Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump are cheering a new poll showing Trump with a modest lead over Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton in Colorado:
The latest polls show the Republican closing the gap with Hillary Clinton in a state where Democrats felt so confident that they diverted millions in television advertising to other battlegrounds.
A Reuters/Ipsos survey released this week gave Trump a narrow edge in a two-way race, 43 percent to 41 percent — his first lead in Colorado in the 2016 election. It follows two other recent polls showing the presidential race as a dead heat or within 5 percentage points.
For months, Clinton held a definitive, often double-digit lead in Colorado, and polling averages still give her the upper hand. But Republicans are sensing momentum here, and Trump announced Tuesday he will hold a rally Saturday in Colorado Springs.
Grist for the discussion mill though it may be, there’s plenty of skepticism out there about this latest trend in polling toward Trump:
— Nick Riccardi (@NickRiccardi) September 14, 2016
Yesterday, GOP-aligned pollster Magellan Strategies released polling showing a five-point lead for Clinton in Colorado, which earlier this month a Washington Post/SurveyMonkey poll gave Clinton a two-point lead. All of these indicate tightening of the race from mid-August, when Clinton’s lead was in double digits by the consensus of polls at the time.
As we’ve opined previously, if Trump can simply demonstrate the ability for a few days to shut the hell up and not further worsen his already seriously damaged public image, it’s worth several points of support–from Republicans who want to support him but can’t bear to do it when he’s embarrassing their entire party.
But can it last? Based on what we’ve seen from Trump throughout this entire lunatic campaign season, we’d say probably not. Assuming this poll isn’t simply a plain old outlier, we’re most likely seeing a unsustainable level of message discipline for Trump–and the last washout of a summer of desperate attacks on Clinton. At the very least, we’ll need more corroboration from trusted pollsters before calling the momentum definitively changed.
And yes! Maybe this is just the kick in the ass [insert campaign here] needs to [insert remedy here].