Sanders' National Favorability Doubles as Clinton Lead Slides

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Sanders' National Favorability Doubles as Clinton Lead Slides

Latest Gallup shows that while Clinton enjoys name recognition and commanding lead overall, populist candidate continues to surge

Gallup: "Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders' favorable rating among Americans has doubled since Gallup's initial reading in March, rising to 24% from 12% as he has become better known. Hillary Clinton's rating has slipped to 43% from 48% in April. At the same time, Clinton's unfavorable rating increased to 46%, tilting her image negative and producing her worst net favorable score since December 2007." (Photo: by Marc Nozell/Flickr (CC BY 2.0) | AFGE/Flickr (CC BY 2.0) | Remix by Jason Reed)

Under the headline, 'Sanders Surges, Clinton Sags,' Gallup on Friday released new survey data showing that the two-leading Democratic nominees are currently heading in opposite directions when it comes to favorability ratings among likely U.S. voters with the grassroots populism of the Sanders' campaign outshining the strong name recognition and more centrist policies of Clinton.

According to the latest polling, Sanders' favorability rating has doubled since March (from 12% to 24%), while people's positive perception of Clinton has fallen five percentage points since the questions were asked about her candidacy in April.

While Sander's unfavorability rating has also risen slightly, Clinton experienced her worst performance yet on that score since 2007, with 47% of respondents who were able to make a judgement saying they think of her negatively. Overall, Clinton's negativity rating of 46% percent is now higher than her favorability rating of 43%.

Trends aside, overall favorability rating for Clinton is twice that of Sanders. However, Gallup notes that as name recognition for Sanders has grown nationwide, people are gravitating towards his message of combatting economic inequality, climate change, and the outsized influence of money in politics. "Sanders is still an unknown to a majority of Americans," notes Gallup, "with just 44% able to rate him compared with Clinton's 89%."

The bottom line, said Gallup's Lydia Saad, is that even as Clinton's "national image has taken a slight turn for the worse, which is also evident in her image among Democrats," she continues to be the "only Democratic candidate for president with a national name" and is standing "head and shoulders above her next closest competitor—Sanders—in popularity for the presidential nomination."

When broken down by various sub-categories, the differences between Clinton and Sanders are revealing. According to Gallup:

Among Democrats and Democratic leaners, Clinton is currently viewed more favorably by older than younger adults, by nonwhites than whites and by liberals than moderates or conservatives. However, she retains solid majority favorable scores from all of these groups. And she enjoys equally high ratings from men and women as well as in each of the four major regions of the country.

Sanders' Democratic favorable scores significantly trail Clinton's in all subgroup categories, but he comes the closest to her among whites, men, young adults and liberals. The gap between the two candidates is also closer in the East, where Sanders lives, than in the rest of the country. But he does especially poorly among nonwhites and conservative Democrats, trailing Clinton by more than 50 points in each group.

For its latest poll, Gallup surveyed 2,374 American adults using live telephone interviews between July 8 and 21.

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