From Christopher Newport University: NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – With the candidates and voters poised for the first presidential debate tonight, Democrat Hillary Clinton leads Republican Donald Trump in Virginia, according to a new survey of likely voters by the Wason Center for Public Policy at Christopher Newport University. But Libertarian nominee Gary Johnson is winning support, especially among Millennial voters.
In a head-to-head contest, voters prefer Clinton, 48-38 percent. But among all five candidates who will be on the Nov. 8 ballot, the tally is Clinton 39, Trump 33 and Johnson 15. Green Party nominee Jill Stein and independent Evan McMullin each take 3 percent. The margin of error is +/-3.9 percent.
“Clinton’s lead over Trump in Virginia is strong,” said Dr. Quentin Kidd, Director of the Wason Center. “It is not only built upon her own partisan identifiers, but also on a very strong showing from vote-rich Northern Virginia, a large gender gap, and stronger support than Democrats usually get from college-educated white voters and white women.”
The survey also probed likely voters on character issues. A majority (54 percent) said Clinton cannot be trusted with classified information. And a majority (53 percent) said Trump is a racist. “That more than half think that Donald Trump is a racist is astounding,” said Dr. Rachel Bitecofer, Assistant Director of the Wason Center. “That tells you all you need to know about why a diverse state like Virginia is beginning to fall out of reach of the Trump campaign.”
Voters 18-34 years old overwhelmingly prefer Clinton over Trump in a two-way choice, 52-30 percent. When the full ballot is considered, though, many of those Millennial voters flock to the Libertarian. Clinton still leads, with 34 percent, but Millennials take Johnson (27) over Trump (23).
In military-heavy Virginia, more voters think Clinton would make a better Commander-in-Chief than Trump, 50-40 percent. Women think Clinton would be a better Commander-in-Chief than Trump by 2-1, 60-30 percent. However, military voters prefer Trump as Commander-in-Chief, 48-39 percent.