Marquette University (MU) Law School recently released its third poll of 2019. Along with its standard questions evaluating voter opinions on Wisconsin politicians, the poll looks ahead to the Democratic primary for president, posing head-to-head matchup questions between potential candidates and President Donald Trump for the first time. The Sept. 4 poll surveyed 800 Wisconsin voters from Aug. 25-29, 2019.
In general, Wisconsinites continue to see the state as headed in the right direction. 55 percent of respondents said the state is headed in the right direction, up from 52 percent in April but down from 57 percent at the very start of Gov. Evers’s term in the January poll. 37 percent of voters say Wisconsin is on the wrong track.
President Donald Trump
Approval of President Donald Trump in Wisconsin remained about the same as the last several polls at 45 percent approval and 53 percent disapproval. Voters continue to have strong opinions about the president, with 70 percent stating they strongly approve or disapprove and just 29 percent stating they somewhat approve or disapprove of the president.
Wisconsin voters have a net favorable view of Gov. Tony Evers. 49 percent have a favorable opinion of the governor, and 35 percent have an unfavorable opinion. Overall, Gov. Evers’s approval rating in Wisconsin is 54 percent, rising seven points from 47 percent in the previous poll in April. Vo ters have less strong opinions about the governor than they do the president, with 43 percent stating they strongly approve or disapprove and 45 percent stating they somewhat approve or disapprove of the governor.
The approval rating of the Republican-majority Wisconsin Legislature remains similar to the governor’s at 52 percent. However, a large share of voters is still unfamiliar with Wisconsin’s legislative leaders. 52 percent have not heard enough to share an opinion about Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester) and 49 percent have not heard enough to share an opinion about Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau).
2020 Democratic Primary
The poll asked Democratic and independent voters whom they would vote for in the Democratic primary for the 2020 presidential election. Topping the list was former Vice President Joe Biden at 28 percent, followed by U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders (D-Vermont) at 20 percent, and Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts) at 17 percent. No other candidate polled above 6 percent with Wisconsin voters.
Out of the top five candidates chosen in the MU poll, voters have the most favorable view of Biden, with 45 percent viewing him favorably. Voters are also most familiar with Biden, with just 7 percent stating they haven’t heard enough about him to share an opinion. The next most favorable and most recognizable candidate was Bernie Sanders at 39 percent viewing him favorably and just 8 percent stating they haven’t heard enough. Over a quarter of respondents hadn’t heard enough to respond about Warren, South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg, or U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris (D-California).
|Candidate||Favorable||Unfavorable||Haven’t heard enough|
In four questions putting potential Democratic nominees head-to-head with President Trump, Biden faired best, beating Trump 51 percent to 42 percent. Sanders was the only other candidate who beat Trump in the poll at 48 percent to 44 percent. Warren and Harris both were tied with the president in the head-to-head questions.