UPI/CVoter poll: Donald Trump sticks to script, comes to within 1% of Hillary Clinton's lead

By Allen Cone   |   Aug. 22, 2016 at 9:33 AM

WASHINGTON, Aug. 22 (UPI) -- The UPI/CVoter daily presidential tracking poll released Monday shows Donald Trump closing in on Hillary Clinton's lead -- which now stands at 0.7 percent -- possibly a reflection of the Republican sticking largely to the issues last week.

The online poll shows Clinton with 48.19 percent to Trump's 47.47 in polling through Saturday. In one day, her lead declined by 2.9 percentage points. On Friday, she led Trump 49.45 to 45.85.

Trump's rise in the UPI/CVoter poll could indicate voters are being swayed by what the real estate mogul says -- and doesn't say -- in public.

Trump's tone in his speeches has been tempered in the past week as he relies on a teleprompter in remarks at rallies and largely stays away from more controversial statements. On Thursday in Charlotte, N.C., Trump said he regretted past comments that have caused people "personal pain."

Trump has regained ground he lost during tracking periods when he made controversial comments about the Muslim Gold Star family of U.S. Army Capt. Humayun Khan, who was killed in Iraq, as well as when he hedged whether he'd endorse Speaker Paul Ryan in his re-election campaign. Clinton also improved in the polls when Trump made comments about the 2nd Amendment some critics interpreted as a veiled threat against the Democratic nominee.

So while Clinton largely sticks to her scripted speeches and declines to take questions from reporters, swings in the UPI/CVoter daily tracker could fluctuate based on what Trump has to say, or chooses not to say, in a given time period.

Also within this past week, Trump has overhauled his senior campaign staff. Trump hired former Breitbart executive Steve Bannon, and also promoted veteran pollster and personal confidant Kellyanne Conway to a senior position. And campaign chairman Paul Manafort has departed.

On Friday, Trump also toured flood-ravaged Louisiana, a move Democratic Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards applauded for shining a light on the disaster there.

Meanwhile, the post-convention bumps both candidates enjoyed have largely leveled out this week. One group that has not rebounded since the two major party conventions, though, are those in the "others" category -- defined in the poll as any respondent who declined to pick either Trump or Clinton.

In mid-July, up to 16.85 percent of voters chose "others" in the UPI/CVoter poll, a number that has continuously dropped since. "Others" voters dropped below double digits July 21, the last day of the Republican National Convention.

As of Saturday, 4.34 percent of the respondents chose this option compared with 5.48 percent the previous Saturday.

The UPI/CVoter online tracking poll surveys about 200 people each day, leading to a sample size of roughly 1,400 people during any seven-day span.

Because the poll is conducted online and individuals self-select to participate, a margin of error cannot be calculated. The poll has a credibility interval of 3 percentage points. This seven-day span includes data collected from Aug. 14-20, when 1,689 individuals were surveyed. Of them, 1,191 identified themselves as likely voters.

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