Polls Give Clinton Higher Marks Than Trump on Handling Public Policy


Ken Bredemeier

VOA News

American voters are viewing Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton more favorably in the aftermath of last week’s national party convention, several surveys show, even as they continue to question her honesty and trustworthiness.

The latest CNN/ORC poll showed the former U.S. secretary of state with an edge over Republican challenger Donald Trump, a real estate tycoon making his first run for elected office, on who would better handle several public policy issues, including the economy, immigration, health care and fighting Islamic State terrorists. Clinton gained ground on all four issues over Trump from the last poll conducted by the cable news channel.

CNN said Clinton has pulled even with Trump on who would be best at handling terrorism and holds a marked edge over him on setting U.S. foreign policy.

A CBS News poll shows Clinton, the country’s top diplomat from 2009 to 2013, with a significant edge over Trump, a one-time television reality show host, on the question of which candidate is better prepared to be president. The survey showed voters believe Clinton, by a 60 percent to 37 percent margin, is prepared, while only 35 percent say Trump is prepared and 61 percent said that he is not.

The CBS poll said 57 percent believe Clinton has the right temperament and personality to be president, but only 31 percent agreed that Trump does.

Clinton’s campaign continues to be weakened by perceptions that she is less than honest and trustworthy, although surveys have shown that Trump also fares poorly on the same question. The CBS poll said 34 percent of voters it surveyed viewed Clinton as honest, while 60 percent did not. Trump had a 36 percent favorable rating on honesty, 59 percent negative.

Questions continue to be raised about Clinton’s handling of classified information on the unsecured private email server she used while she was President Barack Obama’s first term secretary of state instead of a more secure government server. The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation recently concluded that she was «extremely careless» in her handling of the national security material, but that no criminal charges were warranted.

Last weekend, Clinton told Fox News Sunday that FBI chief James Comey had said she was truthful in an interview with investigators probing her use of the private email server stationed in her New York home. Clinton said she was confident that she neither sent nor received classified email on her private server, but that some of the materials had subsequently been retroactively reclassified.

Fox interviewer Chris Wallace suggested she had not told the truth to the American public, that some of the material had been marked as classified, a contention Clinton rejected.

The Washington Post‘s fact-checking operation gave Clinton its lowest rating for her answers to Wallace, saying she «relies on excessively technical and legalistic answers to explain her actions.»

Several surveys now show Clinton pulling ahead of Trump, while the race had been virtually a dead heat after Trump claimed the Republican nomination at his party’s national convention two weeks ago.

CNN said Clinton is ahead, 52 percent to 43 percent, a 12-point swing from a week ago before the Democrats became the first major U.S. political party to name a woman as its presidential candidate.

CBS News shows Clinton with a 46-39 edge, while NBC News/Survey Monkey pegged her advantage at 50-42.