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Perceptions of Race Relations Change – South Carolina, California, Oklahoma, Vermont, Maine

Your Daily Polling Update for Wednesday, February 19


Same as yesterday

RON’S COMMENT: Today’s average is based on eight polls, ranging from 44% (The Economist) to 50% (Rasmussen). Without these extremes, it would still be 46%…. President Trump’s disapproval rating averages 51% today (-1 from yesterday), which is 5 points higher than his approval rating.


Among Democratic primary voters nationwide

% = Average of seven new polls
Bernie Sanders: 28.6%
Joe Biden: 17.6%
Michael Bloomberg: 15.9%
Elizabeth Warren: 12.3%
Pete Buttigieg: 10.3%
Amy Klobuchar:6.6%
Tom Steyer: 2.3%
Tulsi Gabbard: 1.7
Candidates with 1% or less not listed

RON’S COMMENT: Seven polls today, with Sanders building up a national lead across the board. Biden is now struggling to hold onto second place. Across today’s polling, Sanders ranges from 24% to 32%, Biden ranges from 15% to 22% and Bloomberg ranges from 12% to 20%. Bloomberg runs second in two polls, Biden runs second in four polls and they tie for second in one other poll…. Warren, who ranges from 10% to 16%, is stuck in fourth place. Neither Buttigieg nor Klobuchar has caught fire nationally; Bloomberg and Biden are in their way…. The WSJ/NBC poll shows that as the race moves forward, Democrats have become less certain: 30% of Democratic primary voters say they’re “just leaning towards” a candidate,” which is higher than it was last month (27%). Also, 45% last month said they’d “definitely vote” for a certain candidate, and now that’s down to 40%.


Among Democratic voters in each state

South Carolina
Joe Biden: 23%
Bernie Sanders: 23%
Tom Steyer: 20%
Pete Buttigieg: 15%
Elizabeth Warren: 9%
Amy Klobuchar: 8%
Candidates with 1% or less not listed

RON’S COMMENT: This is really bad news for Biden. He led every South Carolina poll for an entire year. Now, Sanders ties him in this poll with Steyer close behind and Buttigieg showing some life. If Biden doesn’t win South Carolina, he will likely have to end his campaign. The primary is Feb. 29 and 54 delegates are at stake.

California Primary
Bernie Sanders: 25%
Michael Bloomberg: 21%
Joe Biden: 15%
Pete Buttigieg: 12%
Elizabeth Warren: 9%
Amy Klobuchar: 6%
Tom Steyer: 3%
Candidates with 1% or less not listed

RON’S COMMENT: This California poll shows Sanders leading whites with 22% and Bloomberg second with 20%; Buttigieg and Biden are tied for third among whites at 15% each…. Bloomberg is winning blacks (41%) with Sanders second (25%) and Biden third (17%)…. Sanders leads Hispanics (33%) with Bloomberg second (16%) and Biden third (15%).

Oklahoma Primary
Michael Bloomberg: 20%
Bernie Sanders: 14%
Joe Biden: 12%
Pete Buttigieg: 11%
Elizabeth Warren: 8%
Amy Klobuchar: 6%
Candidates with 1% or less not listed

RON’S COMMENT: Bloomberg leads Oklahoma with Sanders, Biden and Buttigieg vying for second. The primary is March 3, Super Tuesday, and 37 delegates are at stake.

Vermont Primary
Bernie Sanders: 51%
Pete Buttigieg: 13%
Elizabeth Warren: 9%
Michael Bloomberg: 7%
Joe Biden: 5%
Amy Klobuchar: 4%
Candidates with 1% or less not listed

RON’S COMMENT: Sanders remains very popular in his home state, as these numbers show. The primary is March 3, Super Tuesday, and 16 delegates are at stake.

Maine Primary
Bernie Sanders: 25%
Pete Buttigieg: 16%
Michael Bloomberg: 14%
Joe Biden: 12%
Elizabeth Warren: 9%
Amy Klobuchar: 4%
Tulsi Gabbard: 3%
Tom Steyer: 2%
Candidates with 1% or less not listed

RON’S COMMENT: Sanders leads Maine with a three-way battle for second place. The primary is March 3, Super Tuesday, and 24 delegates are at stake.


Among voters nationwide

In general, do you think race relations in the United States are (ROTATE) very good, fairly good, fairly bad, or very bad? 

Very/fairly good: 42%
Very/fairly bad: 55%

RON’S COMMENT: While a 55% majority say race relations are bad, that’s an improvement from four years ago, when 74% said race relations were bad…. Now: 50% of whites and 83% of blacks say race relations are bad….. Four years ago: 75% of whites and 76% of blacks said race relations were bad.

Presidential job rating average based on recent nationwide polls.
NATIONAL: DEMOCRATIC NOMINATION: Average based on the following seven polls––Washington Post/ABC Feb. 14-17; NPR/PBS/Marist, Feb. 14-17; Emerson, Feb. 16-18; The Economist/YouGov, Feb. 16-18; WSJ/NBC, Feb. 14-17; SurveyUSA, Feb. 13-17; Morning Consult, Feb. 12-17
SOUTH CAROLINA: Change Research, Feb. 12-14
CALIFORNIA: SurveyUSA for KABC/KGTV, Union-Tribune, Feb. 13-16
OKLAHOMA: CHS, Feb. 10-13
VERMONT: Vermont PBS, Feb. 4-10
MAINE: Colby College, Feb. 10-13

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 2019 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.