A report from NBC News indicates that the Trump 2020 re-election campaign is cutting ties with its internal polling team after numbers leaked showing President Donald Trump trailing former Vice President Joe Biden in 11 key states and running nearly 10 points behind Biden in at least one national poll.
The numbers, which show Trump struggling to find footing against Biden in states he easily won over his 2016 opponent, Hillary Clinton, are from March — before Joe Biden officially entered the race, and before he became a top target of his opponents for the 2020 Democratic nomination — but the numbers are concerning enough for the Trump 2020 campaign to take action.
Specifically, the polls show Trump "underperforming in reliably red states that haven’t been competitive for decades in presidential elections" — something the president's re-election campaign does need to worry about.
In battleground states, Trump and Biden are in hot competition, likely because the president's message of economic populism is largely the same message as Joe Biden's. States like Wisconsin, Florida, and Michigan, where Trump pulled out narrow wins, are watching the president closely.
"In Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Florida and Michigan — three states where Trump edged Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton by narrow margins that proved decisive in his victory — Trump trails Biden by double-digits. In three of those states — Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Florida — Biden’s leads sit outside the poll’s margin of error," NBC News reports.
Trump is also down by one point in Ohio, and, shockingly, only up by two points in Texas,
The Trump campaign acknowledged the leaked numbers but also pointed out that they're from March, which is "ancient" by campaign standards, and that the numbers represent an "incomplete" assessment of polling data. The polls were also taken at a volatile time for the Trump presidency, before Trump was exonerated of collusion with Russian officials by the Mueller report.
“These leaked numbers are ancient, in campaign terms, from months-old polling that began in March before two major events had occurred: the release of the summary of the Mueller report exonerating the President, and the beginning of the Democrat candidates defining themselves with their far-left policy message,” Trump's campaign manager, Brad Parscale, told NBC News.
The numbers also pre-date any serious campaigning from the other side of the aisle. March was well before Biden entered the race, and at the time, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) was leading the field of candidates who were actually in contention. Since then, Sanders has tanked by 20 points, and Democratic candidates have taken to attacking each other and not the president.
A Fox News poll taken last week, though, shows that Trump may have a rockier road to re-election than anticipated, even if the leaked numbers are no longer accurate. Most Democrats in that poll best Trump in a head-to-head matchup, with Biden leading the current president by ten points.
"Trump trails the Democrat in each of the possible 2020 head-to-head matchups tested and never gets above 41 percent support. At the same time, none of the challengers hits 50 percent," Fox News reports. "Biden tops Trump by 10 points (49-39 percent) and Sanders is up by nine (49-40) -- both of these leads are outside the poll’s margin of error. [Sen. Elizabeth] Warren (D-MA) has a two-point edge over Trump (43-41)."