Voters Prefer Trump on Economy, Clinton on Most Other Issues

Voters Prefer Trump on Economy, Clinton on Most Other Issues

Voters Prefer Trump on Economy, Clinton on Most Other Issues

The FINANCIAL -- With the presidential election less than two months away, U.S. registered voters say Donald Trump is better able to handle economic issues -- such as employment and taxes -- than Hillary Clinton. However, these voters see Clinton as better suited than Trump on issues such as the treatment of minority groups, social issues, foreign affairs, education and immigration. Overall, of the 17 issues that Gallup asked registered voters about, Clinton leads Trump on 10.

While Clinton leads Trump on only three more issues total (10 for Clinton, seven for Trump), her average advantage far outpaces his. Clinton leads by an average of 19 percentage points, while Trump's average advantage is seven points.

The disparity in leads between Clinton and Trump in these policy spheres exceeds the gap between the major-party candidates in the two most recent presidential elections. In September 2008, John McCain led Barack Obama on six issues by an average of 12 points, while Obama led McCain on four issues by an average of nine points. In September 2012, Obama led Mitt Romney on seven issues by an average of 11 points -- driven largely by a 26-point advantage on social issues -- whereas Romney's lead on two issues averaged nine points, according to Gallup.

Trump Weaker Among Republicans Than Clinton Is Among Democrats

Trump receives less support on these policy issues among registered Republicans than Clinton receives among registered Democrats. Republicans choose Trump over Clinton by an average of 71 points. Meanwhile, Clinton's advantage over Trump among Democrats across all policy spheres averages 81 points.

Among registered Republicans, Trump receives especially weak support on social issues, the treatment of minorities and climate change -- issues on which about three in 10 Republicans say Clinton is better suited. On economic issues -- such as taxes, the economy and the federal budget deficit -- Trump scores especially strongly among his political compatriots, with almost nine in 10 Republicans preferring him to Clinton.

Clinton's weakest point among registered Democrats is on the issue of government regulation of Wall Street and banks, on which slightly less than one-fifth of Democrats prefer Trump. However, in all other policy spheres, no fewer than eight in 10 Democrats say Clinton would be better able than Trump to handle the issue.

Independents strongly prefer Clinton to Trump on the treatment of minority groups in the U.S. (+41), climate change (+38), social issues (+37) and foreign affairs (+33). On immigration -- an issue central to Trump's campaign -- independents choose Clinton over Trump.

Trump's advantages over Clinton among independents reflect some of his strongest issues among Republicans. He leads Clinton on the budget deficit (+21), gun policy (+21) and government regulation of Wall Street (+20). However, on issues where Trump leads Clinton among independents, he averages a 15-point advantage, compared with Clinton's 22-point average advantage on issues where she leads.

Clinton Leads Trump on Nearly All Issues Among Young Americans

Both campaigns have struggled to resonate with young Americans, as both candidates' favorable ratings are lowest among young voters. When 18- to 34-year-olds are asked which candidate they believe to be best suited to handle particular policy issues, younger voters largely prefer Clinton over Trump. For issues on which Clinton leads, her advantage averages 31 points. In fact, young adults choose Clinton over Trump on nearly all issues that Gallup asks about. The only issue where young voters choose Trump over Clinton is on the regulation of Wall Street and banks (+7).

Bottom Line

Americans cite the economy and unemployment as some of the most important problems facing the country. While Trump leads Clinton among registered voters in terms of which candidate can best handle these issues, his advantage is relatively small. And among young adults, Clinton leads Trump by seven or eight points on these issues.

Trump, meanwhile, continues to emphasize his stance on immigration. "Immigration" is still one of the most frequently used words Americans use to describe what they've recently heard about Trump. However, registered voters overall and independents prefer Clinton to Trump on the immigration issue by margins of 13 and 10 points, respectively.