State House Sound Bites

Capitol reporter Katie Meyer covers Pennsylvania politics and issues at the Pennsylvania state capitol.

The State House Sound Bites Podcast is now called State of the State and is a part of PA Post, a digital-first, citizen-focused news organization to hold Pennsylvania’s government accountable to its citizens.

F&M poll shows sharp drop for Trump in PA

Written by Katie Meyer, Capitol Bureau Chief | Oct 4, 2016 5:00 AM

Young supporters wait for Trump to arrive at a rally in Lancaster County. (Photo by AP)

(Harrisburg) -- Donald Trump's numbers have fallen in Pennsylvania, according to a new poll from Franklin and Marshall College.

Hillary Clinton leads Trump 47 to 38 percent among likely voters in F&M's survey. That's a steep change from much of September, when Trump was within a few points of Clinton.

F&M's Poll Director Terry Madonna said the Republican's losses reflect several recent incidents.

Notably, "the debate performance, the back-and-forth with the former Miss Universe, some of the more provocative statements he made last week, and of course the income tax situation."

That "income tax situation" showed that Trump could have gone 18 years without paying federal income taxes.

Trump's low numbers don't just affect him; they also have an outsize impact down-ballot races. Chief among those is Pennsylvania's US Senate race between

Democrat Katie McGinty and Republican incumbent Pat Toomey.

"When Hillary Clinton does better, McGinty does better because of the coattail effect--straight-party voting," Madonna said.

The survey shows Toomey trailing by six points.

Madonna added, though, that the campaign is still volatile. He said he's not ruling out another shakeup before November 8.

A recent Quinnipiac University survey taken during the same period as F&M's has slightly better news for Trump and Toomey. It shows a smaller gap, with Clinton holding a lead of just four points.

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