LIVE POLL: Who do you HATE MORE ? VOTE
The 2016 presidential election is shaping up as a six-month long car wreck, a campaign of nastiness and violence that people say they hate but from which they cannot look away.
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Never before in American history have the two major party nominees been so widely reviled. In the latest NBC News tracking poll out on Tuesday, just 17 percent of voters say they admire Hillary Clinton. That would be political death in any normal year. But Donald Trump’s numbers are even worse. Only 10 percent of voters say they admire the New York–based brand manager and reality TV star.
It gets worse from there.
Clinton and Trump are either disliked or even hated by six in 10 Americans. Take a breath and let that sink in. More than half the country basically despises their two choices for the next president. No wonder people such as Bill Kristol continue to agitate for a third-party alternative such as Mitt Romney or Nebraska GOP Senator Ben Sasse while Bernie Sanders refuses to leave the Democratic race.
The NBC numbers just serve to confirm what other polls have found in recent days. The NBC/Wall Street Journal poll earlier this week showed that 54 percent of Americans have an unfavorable view of Clinton while 58 percent have an unfavorable view of Trump. Both are record-high unfavorables for presidential candidates heading into a general election. And Trump’s number represents a 12 percent improvement as he has locked down the GOP nomination and started to bring the #NeverTrump movement into the fold.
The latest ABC/Washington Post poll put Clinton at 53 percent unfavorable and Trump at 60 percent. The only comparable rating for a nominee was George H.W. Bush in 1992 at 53 percent. He went on to lose to Bill Clinton who never had an unfavorable rating above 50 percent during the campaign.
So how did we get to this dismal, depressing place?
With Trump, the numbers are fairly easy to explain. He is a bombastic demagogue who has alienated Latinos, African-Americans, Muslims, Asian-Americans and nonwhite women. Trump’s attacks on “PC culture” are thrilling to many angry white voters, but his overall boorishness, thin-skinned narcissism and aversion to any kind of policy consistency are a big turn-off to much of the country.