I knew he’d start raving about Fox polls this week. It just took a few days longer than expected.
Imagine believing that Fox News, of all people, would rig a scientific poll to *hurt* Trump. Fox’s polling outfit may be the single most respected arm of FNC within the news business; if they were going to trash their reputation for accuracy to put a thumb on the scale in a poll involving POTUS, obviously it wouldn’t be on his opponent’s side of the scale. I doubt even Trump himself thinks there are shenanigans at work here. This is just something he farted out to signal to fans that they should be officially Mad At Fox for publishing news that’s unhelpful to him, whether or not it’s true.
Tonight on “Hannity”: Which arm of the deep state is my own network’s polling bureau working for?
Not all Fox personnel appreciate the criticism:
That is incorrect. FOX News Opinion Polls are the public’s opinion not of @foxnews Interviews are conducted among a random national sample of 1,004 registered voters. 217 Landline and 787 cellphone numbers were randomly selected for inclusion in the survey. https://t.co/ndjLJqIPfN
— Julie Banderas (@JulieBanderas) July 26, 2019
We’ll see what Shep has to say at 3 p.m. ET. Oh, and contra POTUS, Fox News pollsters didn’t have Trump losing “BIG” to Hillary in 2016. They had the race Clinton 48, Trump 44. The popular vote eventually shook out at Clinton 48, Trump 46. They were practically spot on in gauging national sentiment. Fortunately for POTUS, national sentiment doesn’t matter in a contest of 50 state elections.
Anyway, Team Biden is enjoying his agony. A Quinnipiac poll recently showed Biden up eight points on Trump in Ohio, a state Trump won by eight. That lead is alarming, if unlikely. Now comes today’s Fox poll:
.@realDonaldTrump, we know you love the polls. We're glad you saw the latest from Fox: Biden 49%, Trump 39. You're losing by ten. Have a nice day.
— Team Joe (Text JOE to 30330) (@TeamJoe) July 26, 2019
Biden enjoys the largest lead head-to-head with Trump in Fox’s survey but Bernie Sanders also tops him by six points. Interestingly, the two top-tier women candidates don’t fare as well: Trump leads both Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris by a point. In all likelihood those results are less a measure of each candidate’s strength than they are of name recognition. Biden is by far the most well-known of the four, then Bernie via his 2016 run, and then Warren and Harris. All the poll’s really telling us, I think, is that right now voters are very much willing to swap out Trump for a Democrat whom they know and trust and — importantly — who hasn’t sustained any real damage from opponents yet. Obviously Biden’s 10-point lead here won’t hold. All the numbers really mean is that the race begins with undecideds open-minded about making Trump a one-term president.
Speaking of Biden and damage from opponents, he and his team have been … feisty in their comments about Cory Booker and Kamala Harris this week. The latest:
“You can’t be called the architect of mass incarceration and remain quiet,” a Biden ally said. “That’s cruel and personal. That goes against his entire career. You can’t let people say bullsh*t and not respond to it.”
“The gloves are off,” the ally added. “At this point, you have to punch back when someone attacks your record. People want to see him throw a punch. The president is certainly going to come at him hard, so why not start now?”
“I’m not going to be as polite this time,” Biden told donors on Wednesday of next week’s debate. He’s been jabbing at Booker for his record on civil rights as mayor of Newark and head of its problematic police department, and at Harris for dodging on what Medicare for All would do to private insurance and how she plans to pay for it without hiking middle-class taxes. (“Come on! What is this, is this a fantasy world here?”) My favorite counterpunch, though, is from today’s WaPo, in which Biden allies accuse Harris of having betrayed Biden’s dead son Beau:
“I was prepared for them to come after me but I wasn’t prepared for the person coming at me the way she came at me,” Biden told CNN. “She knew Beau. She knows me.”…
Harris and the younger Biden developed a bond in the early 2010s as fellow state attorneys general in California and Delaware, respectively, strategizing on cases and comparing notes as politically ambitious future Democratic stars.
That fostered a connection between Harris and the elder Biden; the former vice president endorsed her 2016 Senate run, and some Democrats saw the pair as a dream 2020 ticket. But now some in Biden’s camp consider Harris’s surprise attack, and her ongoing critique of his civil rights record, a personal breach.
“I don’t pretend to know what’s in the vice president’s head — I wasn’t surprised that someone came after him,” said one longtime friend of Beau’s who spoke on the condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the subject. “But I turned to my wife and said, ‘Beau’s flipping in his grave.’”
Is Harris not supposed to try to win lest it desecrate Beau Biden’s memory somehow? Grandpa Joe has a stranglehold momentarily on black voters:
South Carolina Monmouth poll
— Sahil Kapur (@sahilkapur) July 25, 2019
She needs those voters to win. She figured, quite reasonably, that the only way to get black Democrats to question their support for the first black president’s VP is to challenge his civil-rights credentials. So she hit Biden hard on busing. She’s playing for keeps. And old pro Joe Biden, a veteran of more than 10 state and national campaigns, wants people to believe she’s peeing on Beau Biden’s grave because of it. Yeesh.
Anyway, consider Trump’s complaint about the polling from Fox News — Fox News! — a reminder that he’ll absolutely pronounce the result of next year’s election false/rigged if he loses. There’s no fair-and-square “I got beat” outcome here in the offing.