Speed Reads

2020 watch

In a ludicrously premature 2020 poll, 'Generic Democrat' beats Trump 52 percent to 36 percent

If you are still nursing a figurative hangover from the never-ending 2016 presidential race, new polling from NBC News/Wall Street Journal may trigger some emotional discomfort, but early numbers for President Trump's presumed 2020 re-election campaign are in, and they aren't great. Only 18 percent of Americans say they would definitely support Trump next go-around, the poll found, while another 18 percent would probably back him, 38 percent would definitely vote against him, and 14 percent would probably vote for whatever Democrat is on the ballot.

If you're keeping score, that's 36 percent for Trump, 52 percent for Generic Democrat.

In comparison, only 14 percent of Americans told NBC/WSJ pollsters they would definitely vote for a generic Republican over President Bill Clinton in December 1993, after a tough first year for Clinton. There is a predictable partisan split in the Trump 2020 numbers, with 43 percent of Republicans saying they will definitely support Trump and 73 percent of Democrats saying they will definitely vote against him. Trump has lost ground among key demographics, with only 47 percent of white voters without a college degree saying they will definitely or probably vote for Trump and 43 percent of rural voters giving a definite thumbs-up.

The NBC/WSJ poll was conducted Dec. 13-15 among 900 adults and it has an overall margin of error of ±3.3 percentage points.