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LUNCHTIME POLITICS: Iowa, Alabama, South Carolina, Texas Senate Polls – Strong Support for Anti-Pandemic Proposals – Better Off?

Your Daily Polling Update for Thursday, August 6


Down 1 from Tuesday

RON’S COMMENT: Today’s average is based on six polls, ranging from 40% (Reuters, Politico) to 48% (Rasmussen). Without these extremes it would still be 43%…. Trump’s disapproval rating averages 54% today (same as Tuesday), which is 11 points higher than his approval rating…. See the trend in Trump’s job approval average since the beginning of 2020 at approval trend.


Among general election voters


(Economist) Biden over Trump: +9 (49-40)
(The Hill) Biden over Trump: +3 (48-45-5)
(Rasmussen) Biden over Trump: +3 (48-45)
Average of last five polls: Biden +5.2

RON’S COMMENT: Some national presidential polls are tightening. The Hill poll two weeks ago had Biden ahead by 7 points. This new poll has him up by 3. The Rasmussen poll had Biden ahead by 6 points last week, now he’s up by 3. The Economist poll didn’t move over the past week, Biden’s lead remained 9 points in each sampling….  In the Economist poll:

  • Republicans break 89% for Trump, 5% for Biden and 0% other.
  • Democrats break 90% for Biden, 4% for Trump and 4% other.
  • Independents break 41% for Biden, 39% for Trump and 6% other.
  • Moderates break for Biden by a two-to-one margin, 58-29.
  • 49% of Democrats are “enthusiastic” about Biden and 42% are “satisfied but not enthusiastic.”
  • 69% of Republicans are “enthusiastic” about Trump and 24% are “satisfied but not enthusiastic.”
  • 62% of Biden voters are mostly voting against Trump.
  • 19% of Trump voters are mostly voting against Biden.


States Trump carried in 2016: 
IOWA: Trump +2

States Clinton carried in 2016: 
HAWAII: Biden +27

RON’S COMMENT: Trump won Iowa by 9 points last time. This poll finds a competitive race this time. The 2-point lead is based on a high turnout “likely voter” model; a turnout of all registered voters gives Trump a 3-point edge…. Biden posts wide leads in Hawaii and California––no surprise. But, California seems to be moving more massively against Trump than ever; Hillary Clinton won the state by 30 points and this poll has Biden ahead by 39 points.


Among voters in each state

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R) over Jaime Harrison (D): +1 (44-43)

COMMENT: This poll confirms what other polls have been indicating––incumbent Graham has a fight on his hands. Interestingly, in this poll, Democrat Harrison’s vote (43%) is slightly below what Biden is polling (44%) in the state…. Handicappers rate the race likely Republican.

Sen. Joni Ernst (R) over Theresa Greenfield (D): +1 (48-47-3)

RON’S COMMENT: This is a barn burner and the outcome could depend upon the presidential race. Incumbent Ernst posts a 1-point lead, which is based on a high turnout “likely voter” model. Among all registered voters, Ernst’s lead is 3 points…. The previous poll we reported had Democrat Greenfield, a businesswoman and former U.S. House candidate, up by 3 points…. Handicappers rate the race a tossup…. Excerpts from the Monmouth poll report:

  • “The poll also finds that 40% of Iowa voters say it is very likely they will vote by mail rather than in person this November. Another 17% are somewhat likely to do this, 12% are not too likely, and 30% are not at all likely. All active voters will receive a vote-by-mail application for the 2020 general election.
  • “Most Democrats (61%) say they are very likely to vote by mail this year, compared to just 19% of Republicans. Just under half (43%) of independents are very likely to vote by mail.
  • “Overall, 41% of Iowa voters are very confident that their mail ballot, if they choose to vote this way, will be counted accurately (61% of Democrats, 38% of independents, and 29% of Republicans). However, 32% are very concerned that conducting the November election mainly by mail will lead to voter fraud (59% of Republicans, 27% of independents, and 7% of Democrats).”

Tommy Tuberville (R) over Sen. Doug Jones (D): +17 (52-35)

RON’S COMMENT: The Alabama race is shaping up to be a Republican gain, with Democratic incumbent Jones running well behind Tuberville, who recently defeated Jeff Sessions for the GOP nomination. Interestingly, Jones’ vote (35%) is slightly below what Biden is polling (36%) in the state…. Tuberville, a former Auburn Tigers head coach, had President Trump’s support in the primary runoff…. Handicappers rate the race lean or likely Republican.

Sen. John Cornyn (R) over MJ Hegar (D): +6 (44-38)

RON’S COMMENT: Previous polls had been showing incumbent Cornyn with a somewhat larger lead over Hegar, a retired air force major…. Handicappers rate the race likely or lean Republican.


Among adults nationwide

Please indicate whether you support or oppose each of the following proposals to limit the spread of COVID-19:

% = Support proposal

  • Government funding to expand COVID-19 testing and make it free of charge: 85%
  • Federal funding for the manufacture of protective equipment and testing supplies: 83%
  • Once a vaccine is available, federal funding to make it available to all Americans: 83%
  • State law to require mask wearing in public at all times: 76%
  • A single, national strategy for when businesses can reopen: 62%
  • A single, national strategy for when schools can reopen: 60%
  • A mandatory, nationwide two-week shelter-at-home order: 59%
  • Your state temporarily closing down all restaurants and nonessential businesses: 59%
  • A temporary ban on all travel between states: 55%

RON’S COMMENT: This poll shows substantial to overwhelming public support for a range of tough anti-pandemic proposals. This poll also finds that “each candidate’s plan to help the nation recover from the coronavirus” is viewed by 60% of Americans as a “very important” factor in how they vote for president.


Among voters nationwide

Is the country better off now than it was four years ago? 

Better off now: 29%
Better off four years ago: 55%
Not sure: 19%

RON’S COMMENT: A clear majority of voters believe the country was better off four years ago. In agreement is 88% of Biden’s supporters and 19% of Trump’s supporters…. However, 39% believe they (as opposed to the country) were better off four years ago and 43% say they are personally better off now.


Among voters nationwide

Do you have a favorable or an unfavorable opinion of the U.S. Postal Service? 

Favorable: 77%
Unfavorable: 20%

RON’S COMMENT: Looks like most voters like the post office, which includes 87% of Biden’s voters and 65% of Trump’s voters.


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Presidential job rating average based on recent nationwide polls.
PRESIDENT: NATIONAL: The Hill/HarrisX, Aug. 2-5; The Economist/YouGov, Aug. 2-4; Rasmussen, July 29-Aug. 4
HAWAII: HNN/Civil Beat, July 27-30
CALIFORNIA: Berkeley/IGS, July 21-27

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.