J.D. Prose, USA TODAY Network – PA State Capitol Bureau
President Donald Trump has sliced into former Vice President Joe Biden’s lead in Pennsylvania, but Biden still holds an 8-point advantage less than two weeks before the election, according to a new Quinnipiac University poll.
The poll released Wednesday shows Biden leading 51% to 43% in Pennsylvania, compared to a 54% to 41% lead he had two weeks ago. The latest results put Biden’s advantage back to where it was in early September, when he led 52% to 44% in a Quinnipiac poll.
Quinnipiac surveyed 1,241 likely Pennsylvania voters from Oct. 16 to 19. The poll’s margin of error is plus or minus 2.8 percentage points.
A USA TODAY/Suffolk University poll also released Wednesday has Biden leading Trump 49% to 42% in Pennsylvania.
Both candidates covet the Keystone State’s 20 electoral votes, and Pennsylvania is considered pivotal to either’s chances of winning. Trump won Pennsylvania by just 44,300 votes in 2016, but failed to reach 50%.
“That post-debate bounce that boosted Joe Biden’s lead to double-digits has fizzled, rewinding the race in Pennsylvania to where it was in September,” said Quinnipiac University Polling analyst Mary Snow in a statement. “Biden’s support remains above 50 percent as President Trump tries to change the trajectory in a crucial state where he receives poor grades on his job performance and his handling of the coronavirus response.”
Fifty-three percent of voters disapprove of Trump’s job performance and 56% disapprove of the way he has responded to the COVID-19 pandemic, which has killed 221,000 Americans and nearly 8,600 people in Pennsylvania.
An overwhelming majority — 79% — of Pennsylvania voters planning to vote by mail or absentee are Biden supporters, while 63% of those who said they are voting in-person back Trump, who recently contracted the coronavirus.
Biden has a 50% favorable rating and Trump’s is 43%. A majority said Biden has good leadership skills (50%) and cares about average Americans (60%), while 56% said Trump does not have good leadership skills and 53% said he doesn’t care about average Americans.
Trump leads Biden among white men (52% to 43%), but trails Biden among women (53% to 43%) and non-white voters (66% to 25%) in the state.
J.D. Prose writes for the USA Today Network’s Pennsylvania State Capitol Bureau. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @jdprose.