Donald Trump winning the Republican nomination would decrease the likelihood of Republican base voters turning out to the polls, while it would increase the chances of independents turning out to vote next year, a poll of Arizona voters has revealed.
The result would be a net negative for the Republican Party, the poll’s commissioner said.
The survey results showed that with Trump as the nominee, 30.5 percent of “high efficacy” Republican voters would be less motivated to vote, and 20.5 percent of those voters would be less likely to vote for other Republican candidates on the ballot.
Currently 91.4 percent of Republicans and 83.8 of Democratic voters are “highly motivated” to vote in 2016.
“This poll isn’t about whether Trump wins if he is the nominee; it’s about what effect a Trump nomination by the Republican party would have on other Republican candidates. We wanted to look into the ‘down ballot’ effect Trump as the Republican nominee would have on the 2016 elections,” said Michael Noble who conducted the poll of 818 Arizona voters for MBQF Consulting.
The poll, commissioned by the Arizona firm Insight Consulting, has an estimated margin of error of 3.43 percent.
Meanwhile, a Trump nomination means more independent voters would be likely to turn out.
“A Trump nomination makes 50.9 percent of independent voters more likely to vote next year; while 28.45 percent become less motivated — so you have a net 20.5 percent increase in Independent motivation to vote,” Noble said. “But again, 30.5 percent of Republican voters become less motivated.”
“So it’s a net loss for Republicans,” he continued. “Furthermore, Independents are not a homogenous block, obviously.”
Noble advised that “Republican campaigns will have to have a very different approach to the 2016 election with Trump carrying the Republican banner.”
Paul Walker, who commissioned the poll, added, “While the Trump effect on Independent voters is complicated, the effect on high efficacy Republicans is not; it’s hard to win when nearly a third of your base is less motivated, and it’s nearly impossible to win when 20.5 percent of your base says they are less likely to support other Republicans for other offices.”