Polls could still be missing some Trump voters due to polling errors, not because there are shy Trump supporters, reports FiveThirtyEight.
President Donald Trump, who trails Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden in most national public opinion polls just six weeks ahead of the Nov. 3 election, regularly refers to a “silent majority” of Americans who he expects to vote for him.
The “shy voters” theory suggests Trump supporters are hesitant to express their opinions in polls.
But a recent Morning Consult Poll of 2,400 likely voters found that support for Trump didn’t change whether respondents were polled via live-phone interviews or online.
“We ran a large sample study that does not find any shy Trump voters exist at the national level for the 2020 matchup,” Morning Consult CEO Kyle Dropp told FiveThirtyEight.
The news outlet cited higher levels of error in state polls in 2016 as a reason behind the “shy voter” theory. Those surveys showed a large percentage of undecided and third-party voters in the lead-up to the election, “which produced a sizable number of late deciders who ended up disproportionately backing Trump,” per FiveThirtyEight.
Additionally, many state-level polls missed counting the number of white voters without a four-year college degree, a group that overwhelmingly backed Trump.
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