Must We Settle For the Lesser of Evils?

A recent (March 31 to April 4) AP-GfK Poll contains some interesting information.  The essence is this:  we apparently will be voting for the lesser of evils for our next President since the candidates available to us have significant negatives.  The poll is available here if you desire more detail.

The thrust of the AP article is this, and I quote: “In any other election year, more than half the country holding an unfavorable impression of a candidate for president would be cause for alarm.  This is not a normal year.”

Hillary Clinton is seen as undesirable by 55% of those polled.  Donald Trump is seen in that same light by some 69% of those polled.  Ted Cruz has a 59% undesirable rating and Bernie Sanders is the ‘winner’ with just 39% viewing him as undesirable.

That having been said, we later read that Hillary Clinton is viewed by the greatest number of Americans as being able to win a general election for President with some 82% saying she can win.  Only 60% say that of either Bernie Sanders or of Donald Trump.  The margin of error is plus or minus 3.3%.

There is an apparent disconnect when you view the negative tone of this poll with the 82% who say Hillary can win.  Only 45% would vote for her, but 82% predict she will win if she is the candidate.  The 37% must simply be showing their fear that Hillary could actually pull this win off regardless of her opponent.

Trying to spin to a more positive tone,  Ted Cruz appears to be only 4% more undesirable than does Hillary Clinton if we forget that Bernie Sanders is still running for the Democratic nomination.

Is this more a commentary on the attitude of voters who might feel as though they’ve been lied to repeatedly by the people for whom they’ve voted in the past rather than a pointed commentary on the current crop?  Or is it emblematic of the general tenor of the voters who regard the current crop of candidates as just like too many who have gone before?

Whatever the answer to that hypothetical question might be, there is, based on this poll, obviously a significant level of distrust or anger, or both, in the voters today that casts a negative light on virtually the whole bunch who think they have a chance to be in the Oval Office following the coming election in November.

So, what if Hillary is pilloried by the results of the FBI’s investigation of her illegal server, as many now appear to believe will be the case?  That  82% number will shrink markedly and quickly.  Hillary will become damaged goods almost overnight…and that will propel the ‘ranking’ Republican candidate, Ted Cruz at the moment, into the lead and likely to the winner’s circle in November.  What about The Donald?  I believe his negatives will continue to increase as we get nearer and nearer to the election. He just doesn’t appear to me to be serious about this given his breaking down of the individual state teams following the primary races rather than perpetuating and strengthening those state operations.  That is not the wise course I’d expect from a person who is committed to the whole trip.  It is simply inconsistent.

Every indication is that the FBI Director is going to insist the results of that agency’s investigation be shared with the public in the very near future.  If that is delayed by politicians, it will still be very damaging, maybe even more damaging, to Hillary since the information will get out in one way or another.  The tactic of delay will be seen as an outright admission of Hillary’s guilt, and of the shallowness of her repeated protestations of innocence.  She is not that well liked by President Obama as was evidenced in the recent book titled “Unlikeable”.

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