Trump Narrows Biden’s Lead Despite Unfavorable Debate Performance, New Poll Shows

(Photo by JIM WATSON,SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)

Patrick Hauf Contributor
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A new poll released Friday shows President Donald Trump narrowing former Vice President Joe Biden’s lead despite an unfavorable debate performance. 

The poll, conducted by IBD/TIPP, has Biden leading 49 percent to 46 percent nationally. The group’s September polling had Biden leading 49 percent to 41 percent. Respondents, who are registered voters, preferred Biden’s Tuesday debate performance by double digits. Nineteen percent said they switched their vote after the debate — 11 percent to Trump and 8 to Biden, according to the poll.

CLEVELAND, OHIO – SEPTEMBER 29: U.S. President Donald Trump and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden participate in the first presidential debate at the Health Education Campus of Case Western Reserve University on September 29, 2020 in Cleveland, Ohio. This is the first of three planned debates between the two candidates in the lead up to the election on November 3. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Each candidate had loyal party support of over 90 percent, while Independents preferred Biden by 10 percent in the election and by 20 percent in the debate, according to the poll. The poll predicts Trump could improve his support among both Hispanics and African Americans compared to 2016. The margin of error is 3.3 percent. The poll was conducted before Trump announced he tested positive for COVID-19. (RELATED: ‘Trump Campaign Sues Philadelphia Board Of Elections Over Poll Watching’)

IBD/TIPP was one of the few polling groups to correctly predict the 2016 election and has received praise for its unique weighting techniques. The group uses a combination of live interviews and online methods. FiveThirtyEight grades IBD/TIPP at an A/B with a 0.8 percent advantage towards Republican candidates. 

This poll is largely an outlier, with Biden mostly holding national leads well beyond the margin of error. CNBC/Change Research released a poll Thursday showing Biden holding a 13 percent national lead. Respondents favored Biden’s debate performance by 14 percent. Although, only two percent said the debate influenced them to change their vote. (RELATED: ‘Poll Reveals Trump Voters May Have A Massive Advantage On Election Day’)

The CNBC/Change Research poll had a margin of error of slightly above 3 percent. Pollsters are less fond of Change Research, which uses strictly online polling methods. FiveThirtyEight grades the group at a C- with a 1 percent advantage towards Democratic candidates.