The convention is going well for Republicans, but as we progress into the back half, the news cycle is getting full. A Category 4 hurricane with an “unsurvivable” storm surge is bearing down on the coast of Louisiana; the Kenosha protests, riots, and violence are grabbing the country’s attention; and the NBA players cancel games and return the issue of police treatment of African Americans front and center.
We will see if the poll numbers show a bump for the Trump campaign next week. A new slew of state polls from CNBC/Change Research show some not-so-bad numbers for Trump — down one point in North Carolina, down by two points in Arizona, down three points in Florida and Pennsylvania, down five points in Wisconsin, and down six points in Michigan. The poll has Trump down eight points nationally — suggesting that Biden’s national lead might not reflect quite as strong a position in those key swing states.
If the Trump campaign doesn’t get a bump after the convention, it could be a particularly ominous indicator for the White House. Voters may well have made up their minds earlier this year and aren’t all that interested in hearing further arguments. Future chapters of this campaign could still change things, particularly the debates, but . . . with early voting likely to be a major factor, the clock is ticking. Several states, including Virginia, start voting in about three weeks.