Days before President Trump is set to launch his reelection bid, internal polls have leaked that look pretty awful, and now Trump is out to get the pollsters who collected the data, according to the New York Times. A Trump advisor told the Times that the campaign will be letting go three of the five pollsters they currently employ in response.
The leaked polls showed Trump losing to Joe Biden by double digits in Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania. When the data went public, Trump initially claimed the polls were “fake,” but their legitimacy was since confirmed to the Times.
“Those polls don’t exist,” Trump told ABC News on Thursday. “I just had a meeting with somebody that’s a pollster and I’m winning everywhere, so I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
From the Times:
The internal poll numbers, while not predictive, painted a bleak picture of the current state of the race for Mr. Trump, at least against Mr. Biden, when they were taken in March. They showed a number of critical states at risk — not just Florida and the Midwestern states, but even some longtime Republican bastions like Georgia. A Democratic state that Mr. Trump’s aides have insisted they want to put in play, Minnesota, appeared out of reach for the president. [...]
NBC on Sunday reported further data from the Trump campaign polls in March. The president trailed Mr. Biden by one point in Ohio, six points in Georgia, seven points in Iowa, eight points in North Carolina, 14 points in Minnesota, 15 points in Maine and 17 points in Virginia.
Trump, clearly, is extremely mad about these leaks and the data they contain.
Now, campaign manager Brad Parscale is apparently trying to narrow the group of people who have access to internal data. One of the polling firms that Trump is cutting ties with is the Polling Company, which was formerly run by Kellyanne Conway.
The campaign is now trying to play off the leaked numbers as outdated.
“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,” Parscale said in a statement Friday.
“Since then, we have seen huge swings in the president’s favor across the 17 states we have polled, based on the policies now espoused by the Democrats,” he added. “The president is correct that we have no current polls against defined Democrats—at all—that show him losing in any of the states we have tested.”
The Times says that subsequent surveys by the campaign have been focused on message testing rather than measuring the strength of Trump in battleground states.
But Trump still maintains that things are going great.
“Well, the polls I see, we’re doing great in Pennsylvania,” he told Fox News on Friday. “We’re doing really good in North Carolina. Florida, I’m winning by a lot. Ohio, I’m winning by a lot. I just left Iowa. We’re winning that by a lot. And every poll that I see and every poll that we have, I’m winning by — we’re doing well.”