A new poll from Emerson College finds that President Donald Trump is within striking distance of his likely Democratic rival Joe Biden in Minnesota, a state that has not voted for a Republican presidential nominee since 1972.
The poll, which surveyed 733 likely voters between Aug. 8 and Aug. 10, found Biden with 50 percent support and Trump with 47 percent support. The margin of error was plus- or minus-3.6 percentage points.
While the Trump campaign definitely has a right to be excited about this poll, other polls taken in Minnesota do not paint such a rosy picture for the president.
A Fox News poll conducted in July, for instance, found Trump trailing Biden by 13 percentage points. However, that poll sample featured registered voters as opposed to just likely voters.
The fact that Minnesota is a competitive state in the 2020 election should not come as a surprise. In 2016, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton only won the state by 1.5 percentage points, a noticeable drop from President Barack Obama’s 7.7 percentage point margin of victory there four years earlier.
Earlier this year, Trump made MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell the chair of his Minnesota re-election campaign. Lindell, a native Minnesotan, has high name recognition in the state and epitomizes the “America First” principles that the Trump campaign champions.
For example, rather than sending all of MyPillow’s manufacturing operations overseas, Lindell still chooses to make all of his products in the United States.
In addition, Lindell donated MyPillows to National Guard members sleeping on the floor while protecting the Twin Cities from looters and rioters.
As the coronavirus gripped the United States, Lindell transformed a 200,000-square-foot factory into a mask production powerhouse. Trump is lucky to have someone like Lindell working to help him win an industrial Midwest state like Minnesota.
The close margin in the presidential race is not the only good news for conservatives to come out of Emerson’s Minnesota poll.
The poll also surveyed voters’ preferences in the Senate race, where Democrat Tina Smith hopes to win re-election. According to the results, Smith has 48 percent support in a match-up against Republican Jason Lewis, a former congressman who has 45 percent support.
A separate Minnesota survey has additional good news for Trump and the Republicans. A poll from the Tarrance Group, a Republican research and polling firm, surveyed voters in Minnesota’s overwhelmingly red-leaning 7th Congressional District, which Trump carried by 31 points in 2016, InForum reported.
In spite of its Republican presidential lean, a moderate Democrat represents the district in Congress. As the results of the poll demonstrated, that could soon change.
According to the poll, Republican Michelle Fischbach leads incumbent Democratic Rep. Collin Peterson by 10 percentage points. Fischbach had 52 percent support, while Peterson had 42 percent support.
The aforementioned polls in Minnesota are definitely welcome news for Republicans as they hope to keep the presidency and Senate and regain control of the House of Representatives.
As of right now, though, it looks like Republicans will face an uphill battle in their efforts to regain complete control of the federal government.
Republicans currently hold 53 seats in the United States Senate. That means they can afford a net loss of no more than two seats if Biden wins the presidency and a net loss of three seats if Trump wins re-election to avoid losing control of the chamber. Should Republicans suffer a net loss of three seats, it will be up to whoever wins the vice presidency to break a 50-50 tie on votes.
According to polling averages aggregated by RealClearPolitics, incumbent Republican senators trail their Democratic challengers in Arizona, Colorado, Iowa, Maine and North Carolina. At the same time, the polling average in Alabama shows an incumbent Democratic senator losing to his Republican challenger.
Should the RCP polling averages translate into reality on Election Day, Republicans would end up with a net loss of four seats, enabling Democrats to take control of the Senate.
A lot of time remains between now and Election Day, but Republicans face a challenge because they have to play a lot more defense in the Senate than the Democrats.
As for the battle to win 270 votes in the Electoral College, Republicans always begin at a disadvantage.
Since Democrats can automatically count on winning two of the nation’s largest states, California and New York, Republicans must win most of the swing states in order to take the election.
The Emerson College Minnesota poll is good news for the Trump campaign as it seeks to shore up support in the swing states.
If the president decides to start holding in-person campaign rallies again, he should look to hold as many events in Minnesota as possible.
Minnesota’s 10 electoral votes could help put Trump over the top in the race to 270.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.