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LUNCHTIME POLITICS: Biden, Trump, Cheney – Arizona Senate – Michigan Governor – California Recall – NYC Mayor

Your Daily Polling Update for Sunday, May 16



Same as last week

RON’S COMMENT: Today’s average is based on five polls, ranging from 49% (Rasmussen) to 60% (The Hill-HarrisX). Biden’s disapproval rating averages 42% today (+2 from last week).


Among voters nationwide

% = Favorable/Unfavorable
Joe Biden: 51%/44%
Donald Trump: 43%/51%
Liz Cheney: 31%/41%

RON’S COMMENT: Ratings by party:

  • 81% of Democrats, 21% of Republicans, 45% of independents have a favorable view of Biden.
  • 19% of Democrats, 77% of Republicans, 45% of independents have a favorable view of Trump.
  • 51% of Democrats, 18% of Republicans, 26% of independents have a favorable view of Liz Cheney.
  • Note that Biden does a little better among Democrats than Trump does among Republicans.


Among voters statewide

RECALL: A recall election will likely be held in California later this year asking voters whether they want to remove Governor Gavin Newsom from office. If the recall election of Governor Newsom were being held today, how would you vote –YES to remove Newsom from office or NO to keep Newsom as Governor?

Recall Gov. Newsom: 36%
Retain Gov. Newsom: 49%

RON’S COMMENT: Most voters lean against recalling incumbent Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom. Since January, opposition to recall jumped 4 points in this poll…. 85% of Republicans, 33% of independents and 8% of Democrats favor recalling Newsom. Support for recall is smallest in the SF Bay and the LA areas and highest in the North Coast/Sierras (52%)…. This poll also pegs Newsom’s job rating at 52% approve/43% disapprove––which is high enough to avoid recall, provided it stays that way.

ALTERNATIVE CANDIDATES: In the recall election, voters will first be asked to vote Yes or No on the question of whether to remove Governor Newsom from office.  Then, a second question will ask voters who they would choose to replace Newsom as governor should he be recalled from office. Several prominent Republicans have already announced their intention to run or are giving serious consideration to run as candidates for governor in the recall election. For each please indicate whether you would be inclined or not inclined to vote for that person to become governor should Newsom be removed from office. Please select as many or as few persons as you’d like as people you would be inclined to support. If you don’t know enough about the candidate, select no opinion.

Kevin Falconer
Inclined to support: 22%
Not inclined to support: 47%

John Cox
Inclined to support: 22%
Not inclined to support: 49%

Doug Ose
Inclined to support: 14%
Not inclined to support: 48%

Caitlyn Jenner
Inclined to support: 6%
Not inclined to support: 76%

RON’S COMMENT: The above are possible support levels among all voters…. Falconer is former mayor of San Diego; Cox lost to Newsom in 2018 by a 24-point margin; Ose is a former Congressman and briefly a contender for governor in 2018; and Jenner is a former reality TV star and Olympic gold medalist …. Cox opened his 2021 campaign with a sizable media buy, airing his “Beauty and the Beast” ad that has attracted considerable attention. To see the Cox adclick here  ….Not having a major Democrat as an announced recall alternative helps Newsom. In the 2003 election, 55% of the state’s voters voted to recall Democratic Gov. Gray Davis and 45% voted to retain him. In the vote for an alternative, Republican Arnold Schwarzenegger ran first with 49% and Lt. Gov. Cruz Bustamante ran second with 32%.


Among Democratic voters citywide

Democratic primary
Eric Adams: 21%
Andrew Yang: 18%
Kathryn Garcia: 11%
Scott Stringer: 8%
Maya Wiley: 6%
Ray McGuire: 6%
Shaun Donovan: 6%
Diane Morales: 5%

RON’S COMMENT: This poll shows Adams and Yang battling it out for first place, with Adams posting a small lead, and Garcia overtaking Stringer for third place.


Among voters statewide

Sen. Mark Kelly (D) over Michael McGuire (R): +9 (44-35)
Sen. Mark Kelly (D) over Mark Brnovich (R): +10 (46-36)
Sen. Mark Kelly (D) over Kimberly Yee (R): +10 (45-35)
Sen. Mark Kelly (D) over Kari Lake, (R): +11 (46-35)
Sen. Mark Kelly (D) over Kelli Ward (R): +11 (47-36)
Sen. Mark Kelly (D) over Andy Biggs (R): +11 (47-36)
Sen. Mark Kelly (D) over Jack McCain (R): +14 (43-29)

RON’S COMMENT: Democratic incumbent Kelly leads possible Republican challengers by decent margins in this swing state. In 2020, he won the special election by a fairly narrow margin…. Yee is state treasurer; McCain is the former senator’s son; Lake is a former TV anchor; Ward is chair of the state Republican Party; Brnovich is state AG; Biggs is a Congressman; and McGuire is a retired major general and head of the state’s national guard…. How did the 2020 polls do? In the 2020 Senate contest, the final polling average showed the right winner (Kelly), but his actual margin was closer than the polls indicated. The pre-election polling average had Kelly leading by 5.2 points; his actual lead in the election was 2.4 points.


Among voters statewide

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) over James Craig (R): +6 (48-42)
Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) over John James (R): +10 (49-39)

RON’S COMMENT: Incumbent Whitmer leads both Republican possibilities at this point, although her favorable rating is a bit below 50% (48% favorable/45% unfavorable). Her re-elect is 46%…. In a GOP gubernatorial primary trial heat, James leads Craig 36-21. Both Craig and James are African Americans. …. Craig is former police chief of Detroit. James lost two U.S. Senate races: His 2018 challenge to incumbent Debbie Stabenow failed by 6.5 points and his 2020 bid against incumbent Gary Peters failed by a narrow 1.7 points.


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Presidential job rating average based on recent nationwide polls.
CALIFORNIA RECALL: Berkeley/IGS, April 29-May 5
ARIZONA SENATE: OH Predictive Insights, May 3-5
MICHIGAN: MIRS/Target Insyght, May 9-11
NEW YORK CITY 2021: Change Research, May 11-12
FAVORABILITY RATINGS: The Economist/YouGov, May 8-11

Publication schedule: Lunchtime Politics publishes when important new polling data is available, usually at least once a week. When we get closer to the next round of elections, we will resume daily publication. Thanks to all our readers and best of health, Ron

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Lunchtime Politics is owned and published by Ron Faucheux, Chief Analyst at Certus Insights. For interviews or speeches about polling and political trends, contact Dr. Faucheux at

The publisher of this report cannot attest to the reliability or methodology of surveys that it does not conduct.

Copyright 2020 Ronald A. Faucheux

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Ron Faucheux

Dr. Faucheux is a nationally respected public opinion analyst with a unique background in public policy and legislative research, public communications and message strategies. He combines professional competence with pragmatic problem solving skills.