Gov. Scott Walker will be carrying some heavy baggage with him in the November election, including increasing discontent with President Donald Trump.
In a poll released last week by NBC News and Marist College, 53 percent of respondents disapprove of Trump’s performance, including 43 percent who strongly disapprove, and 56 percent do not think he should be re-elected.
Why should that worry Gov. Walker? Seventy-three percent of respondents said the November midterm election is very important, and a majority (54 percent) said they will use their vote to send a message as a check on Trump’s power. Couple that with more than six in 10 voters (or 64 percent) – including 61 percent of independent voters – responding that Walker does not deserve to be re-elected.
The poll also found that Walker trails his potential Democratic candidate, state school superintendent Tony Evers, by 13 points. Evers garnered 54 percent response from respondents, while Walker registered 41 percent.
Evers’ closest competitors are Mike McCabe and Kathleen Vinehout, each of whom received support from 7 percent of the potential Democratic electorate, including those who are undecided yet leaning toward a candidate. A whopping 41 percent of potential Democratic voters are undecided.
“The Republicans have made gains in Wisconsin,” said Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion, in releasing the results. “But it may be difficult for the GOP to make a convincing case in 2018.”
Regarding that voter message of checks and balances, 53 percent of independents and 61 percent of women said their vote will convey that need.
Fifty-eight percent of respondents, including 31 percent of Republicans, say Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into possible wrongdoing and Russian interference with the 2016 presidential election is a fair probe; 28 percent believe it is a “witch hunt,” including 55 percent of Republicans.
Education also appears to play a role in Trump backlash. White voters with and without a college degree are more likely to say their vote calls for a check on Trump. However, 58 percent of those with a college degree are more likely than those without a college diploma (48 percent) to have this view.
Incumbent Democratic Senator Tammy Baldwin registered 54 percent support among respondents, while her potential Republican challenger Kevin Nicholson garnered a 39 percent response, followed by 38 percent for the other Republican candidate, Leah Vukmir. Thirty-four percent of potential Republican primary voters are undecided in their choice between Nicholson and Vukmir. The partisan primary is on Aug. 14.
It should also be noted that there is a wide margin of error in voter forecasting.