A good poll for Trump

The Rasmussen daily presidential tracking poll for Friday, July 31, finds that 50 percent of likely voters approve of President Trump’s job performance, while 48 percent disapprove. 39 percent strongly approve and 43 percent strongly disapprove.

Comparing Trump’s approval rating to that of Barack Obama on the corresponding date eight years ago, Rasmussen finds Trump doing slightly better. On July 31, 2012, Obama’s approval rating in the Rasmussen poll was 47 percent.

If the latest Rasmussen numbers accurately reflect public opinion, and if these numbers hold up, Trump will likely win the election, assuming voter fraud doesn’t prevent that result. At best, Joe Biden is a generic opponent for Trump. Given his age and mental condition, he may be worse than generic. Either way, there is nothing about Biden to suggest that he can defeat an incumbent president with an approval rating of 50 percent.

However, I wonder how worthwhile current polling is when it comes to predicting the state of play as we approach Election Day. It seems to me that the outcome of the election will depend on where the U.S. stands in relation to the Wuhan coronavirus in October, and what the state of our economy is at that time. It’s hard to predict either variable.

Still, I find it mildly heartening to see Trump doing well in at one least one poll, given the unhappy situation with the virus right now and given the weak economy.