Poll: Plurality of YU Students Support Trump, 27% Support Clinton
Donald Trump has the support of 37% of YU undergraduate students, a poll conducted by The Commentator from September 8-11 shows as compared to 27% percent for Hillary Clinton. The poll, which surveyed over 300 YU students, also revealed that 17% of students remain undecided with less than 2 months to go before election day, along with another 8.5% who plan to avoid the voting booth altogether on November 8. Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson garnered 6% support from poll respondents, while the Green Party’s Jill Stein failed to garner even a single vote from all those polled.
To put these numbers in perspective, current polling data from the Real Clear Politics average for a 4-way race currently shows Clinton edging Trump by 2 points, 41.9% to 39.9%, while Johnson and Green party candidate Jill Stein collect 9% and 2.9% of the vote, respectively.
When parsing these numbers more carefully, a few interesting things emerge. Amongst the female students polled (24.7% of the total respondents), Trump’s numbers actually increase to 44.7% despite claims that Trump has a history of negative or sexist attitudes towards women. Clinton’s numbers are also higher among females, jumping to 35.5%. Only 15 of the 76 female respondents opted out of the binary choice between the major party candidates, although most of those who opted out (⅔) remain undecided (none chose Gary Johnson).
Of the male students polled, 35.6% stated an intention to vote for Mr. Trump while 24.0% chose former Secretary Clinton. More than 1 in 10 (10.2%) male students polled declared their intention to avoid the ballot box entirely, selecting “I will choose not to vote”, while 8.4% indicated they would be voting for Gary Johnson.
Overall, it seems students lack confidence in any of the candidates, with only 25% of respondents saying that they are “very confident” with their candidate’s ability to be president. Of those polled, 65% said they were only “somewhat confident” or “not confident” in their choice’s ability to serve as commander-in-chief.
However, there was a significant disparity in confidence levels when breaking down the results by candidate. Of those who support Hillary Clinton, who touts her years of experience in Washington, 29% said they were “not confident” in her ability to be president, while 39% of Trump supporters said the same of their candidate.
Note: The results of this poll were obtained by soliciting responses from students in the lobby of the Rubin Dormitory and Furman Dining Hall during lunch hour. The questionnaire was then forwarded by email to the entire undergraduate student body. The poll was set to allow only one response per YU email account, but some students reported being offered the option to submit a second result. Of the 300+ responses, 24.7 percent were female students. Assessment of sampling bias is left to the reader to determine.