MILWAUKEE, Wis. (WBAY) – What a difference an October Surprise makes. Hillary Clinton has slightly expanded her lead over Donald Trump in Wisconsin, according to the latest Marquette University Law School Poll. And it appears the tape of Donald Trump’s lewd comments about women made the difference.
Numbers released Wednesday afternoon show Clinton with 44 percent support to Trump’s 37 percent support among likely voters in Wisconsin.
Libertarian Gary Johnson accounted for 9 percent, and Green Party candidate Jill Stein had 3 percent.
In September, Clinton’s lead over Trump was smaller: 41 percent – 38 percent among likely voters.
The poll was conducted Oct. 6 – 9. Interviews were completed before last Sunday’s debate.
Polling occurred during last Friday’s release of 2005 video showing Donald Trump making sexually aggressive comments about women to entertainment news host Billy Bush. It appears that video made an impression on voters.
A day-by-day breakdown shows the shift in opinion:
- THURSDAY: Trump 41 percent, Clinton 40 percent
- FRIDAY: Clinton 44 percent, Trump 38 percent
- SATURDAY AND SUNDAY: Clinton 49 percent, Trump 30 percent
Clinton holds a sizable lead among likely female voters. Trump holds a big lead among evangelicals.
Marquette Law School Poll Director Charles Franklin said, “This is a very sharp short-term movement — one of the biggest if not the biggest that we’ve seen in the four years we’ve been doing the Marquette Poll. What is not known is whether this is going to persist or whether the shift that we see will recede back to somewhere close to where they were beforehand.”
Republican U.S. Senator Ron Johnson has narrowed Democratic challenger Russ Feingold’s lead. The poll shows Feingold with 46 percent support to Johnson’s 44 percent.
In September, Feingold held a 44 percent to 39 percent lead over Johnson.
Franklin said most voters in this race are divided along party lines.
“Johnson is getting 89 percent of Republican votes, and Feingold is getting 90 percent of Democratic votes with very little crossover for either candidate,” said Franklin.
The poll interviewed 1,000 registered voters by landline and cell phone. The margin of error is +/- 3.7 percent.
In response to the poll Senator Johnson said in a statement to Action 2 News, “This is going to be a tight race with a real choice for Wisconsinites – between an Oshkosh manufacturer getting things done and a 34-year career politician saying one thing and doing another.”
Feingold also responded with a statement.
He said he “…is heading into the home stretch of this close race as the only candidate who fights for Wisconsin’s middle class and working families.”
The two candidates will debate twice before the election, with the first debate this Friday in Green Bay. That debate will air at 7 p.m., Oct. 14, on WBAY-TV 2.