It’s safe to assume that, overall, a majority of Democrats find Donald Trump unfavorable and a majority of Republicans find Hillary Clinton unfavorable.  But, could the reason Clinton has not gained in polling among Oklahomans during the last six months be because a good portion of those within her own party do not like her?

The highest Clinton has been in the SoonerPoll is 35 percent, but most of the time she’s been around 30 percent or lower.  Unlike Trump, Clinton has not improved in her numbers over time.

So why is this? Perhaps the answer lies in the favorable ratings of the two candidates by those voters within the same party as each of the two candidates.

clinton-unfavorable

In the chart above, the level of strong favorability of voters toward the candidate of their own party is relatively equal, with Republicans slightly more “very favorable” toward Trump than Democrats toward Clinton. But, on the other end of the spectrum, Democrats are much more likely to be very unfavorable toward their own candidate, with nearly 75 percent of the total very unfavorability coming from Democrats toward Clinton.

That’s not to say that there are not Republicans who are unfavorable toward Trump, in fact Republicans lead Democrats in the “somewhat unfavorable” rating toward their own candidate.

“What we would be expecting from this chart is a close or near divide at 50 percent all the way across this chart if the two candidates were near equilibrium in their favorable and unfavorable ratings among voters in their own party,” said Bill Shapard, CEO of SoonerPoll.com.

“There is a pronounced strong unfavorability toward Hillary Clinton among likely voters in Oklahoma, more so among Democrats, that weights her down in the ballot,” Shapard said. “The bottom line is, Clinton has to contend with about one-in-three Democrats — those within her own party in Oklahoma — who find her very unfavorable.  Until that is rectified, her ballot numbers are not going up anytime soon.”

About the Poll

SoonerPoll.com, Oklahoma’s public opinion pollster, asked these questions of Oklahoma likely voters as part of the SoonerPoll Quarterly Poll and was commissioned by the Oklahoman.

The scientific study was conducted from October 18-20, 2016 with 530 likely Oklahoma voters selected at random statewide from a tri-frame of both landline telephone and cell phones, plus a online panel from Research Now. The sample was weighted by age, political party, and congressional district in order to reflect the Oklahoma likely voter population for a general election. The weighting was conducted using a ‘layered technique.’

The sample reflects the traditional demographical profile of the Oklahoma likely voter with roughly half of respondents identifying as conservative and attending religious services once or more per week. The study has a Margin of Error (MoE) of ± 4.26 percent.

This poll not only conforms to the Standards of Disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls but exceeds the standard disclosure with a Call Disposition and Rate Calculation Report. A complete description of the methodology can be found here.

The poll’s Call Disposition and Rate Calculation Report can be viewed here.  A beta version of the Weighting Table Report can be viewed here.

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Bill is the founder of SoonerPoll.com and ShapardResearch, a full service market research firm based in Oklahoma City. Bill began his career in polling after working on a major campaign in Oklahoma from 1996 until founding SoonerPoll in 2004. Under Bill’s leadership, SoonerPoll has become the leading public opinion polling company in the state of Oklahoma conducting more public opinion polls for Oklahoma news media than all other pollsters combined since 2006. Bill’s commitment to go above and beyond the AAPOR ethical guidelines of minimum disclosure ensures that SoonerPoll produces quality results every time. Bill has lectured at Oklahoma State University on developing polling methodologies, data collection processes, and advanced likely voter sampling techniques. Bill also serves as an on-air political commentator for Oklahoma television stations.

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