Biden Leads Trump in Pennsylvania, but Voters Aren’t Sure He’ll Win

Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden speaks as reporters sit socially distant during a campaign event on Tuesday in Wilmington, Del. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

(CN) — Joe Biden, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, leads President Donald Trump by 13 points among registered Pennsylvania voters, a new poll shows, but many aren’t so confident Biden will carry the swing state.  

Despite the former vice president’s significant lead, residents of the Keystone State are still split on who they think will secure the state’s 20 Electoral College votes in November, as 57% said their communities are home to “secret Trump voters.”

According to the Monmouth University poll released Wednesday, those respondents believe some voters in their counties “support Trump but won’t tell anyone about it.”

Patrick Murray, director of the Monmouth University Polling Institute, said in a statement this residual skepticism is a product of the 2016 election cycle, when news outlets consistently reported the Democratic candidate was leading in battleground states.

“The specter of a secret Trump vote looms large in 2020,” Murray said. National polling in 2016 by the Associated Press-GfK gave then-Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton a 14-point national lead 12 days before the election

Biden’s national lead also continues to grow, with a Quinnipiac University poll released Wednesday giving him a 15-point advantage across the country. That number is nearly double the 8-point lead Biden had in a June 18 national poll by the college. His national advantage has ranged from 8 to 11 percentage points in Quinnipiac surveys since March.

Independents voters nationwide – a “key factor behind Biden’s widening lead,” according to the Quinnipiac University poll – have moved considerably toward supporting the former vice president, with his support among that group jumping from 43% in June to 51% in the latest survey.

“Yes, there’s still 16 weeks until Election Day, but this is a very unpleasant real time look at what the future could be for President Trump,” Tim Malloy, a Quinnipiac University polling analyst, said in a statement. “There is no upside, no silver lining, no encouraging trend hidden somewhere in this survey for the president.”

Voters appear to trust Biden more than Trump. The Quinnipiac poll shows 66% of those surveyed said they thought Trump was dishonest, while only 42% were wary of Biden’s intent. When asked if each candidate cares about average Americans, 61% answered the president did not, while 59% think Biden would look out for the little guy.

The national poll also reports an abysmal approval rating for Trump’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Only 35% of voters approve of the president’s handling of the crisis, while 62% do not.

That shift comes as nearly 3.5 million Americans have tested positive for the virus and over 137,000 have died, according to a Johns Hopkins University tracker. For the first time since the outbreak began, a majority of those surveyed told Quinnipiac University pollsters they have been or personally know someone infected by Covid-19.

Voters also trust Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, with delivering correct information about the virus over Trump, according to the poll. Despite the White House undercutting Fauci’s message, 65% of voters said they believe he is providing accurate information. A larger number of voters, 67%, believe the president is not.

“He may be out of the loop and in disfavor with the White House, but it’s clear from the numbers, voters would like Dr. Fauci back on call,” Malloy said.

Back in Pennsylvania, data broken down by demographics shows Trump at an advantage with white voters without a college degree and voters between 50 and 64 years old. Conversely, Biden has the clear lead with Black, Hispanic, Asian and other racial groups in the state, as well as leading the president among voters with college educations and those under 50 or 65 and older.  

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