The presidential race in Wisconsin was largely unchanged in the latest Marquette University Law School Poll even after the turmoil in Kenosha, where violent protests broke out after a police officer shot a Black man in the back seven times.
Forty-seven percent of likely voters backed Joe Biden, while 43 percent supported Donald Trump. Meanwhile, 4 percent backed Libertarian Jo Jorgensen.
Last month, 49 percent backed Biden, while 44 percent supported Trump. That poll didn’t ask about Jorgensen, who wasn’t added to the Wisconsin ballot until after the poll was conducted.
The poll was in the field Aug. 30-Sept. 3, after the violent protests in Kenosha. Trump visited the southeastern Wisconsin city in the middle of the poll being conducted, while Biden was there on the final day it was in the field.
Still, the poll found few changes in views of the protests, Black Lives Matter or how Trump is handling the issue.
Thirty-six percent of registered voters approved of the way Trump has been handling the protests, while 54 percent disapproved. That’s a slight change from August, when 32 percent approved of his approach to the protests. In June, it was 30 percent.
Poll Director Charles Franklin said the survey responses were evenly split before and after Trump’s visit to Kenosha, and the results show Republicans moved significantly on the issue after his stop. Prior to the visit, 65 percent of Republicans said they approved of Trump’s handling of the protests, while 87 percent approved afterward.
But Franklin said there was no significant difference in responses from Dems and independents before his visit compared to afterward.
“The effect that we do find is really concentrated on the people that are already with the president, already his biggest supporters,” Franklin said. “But they do appear to have rallied behind him on his handling of the protests in the wake of his visit.”
Meanwhile, 47 percent of registered voters approved of the protests against police shootings, while 48 percent disapproved. That’s largely unchanged compared to a 48-48 split in August.
Forty-nine percent had a favorable view of Black Lives Matter, while 37 percent had an unfavorable one. That’s unchanged from August.
Franklin noted views of the protests and Black Lives Matter saw significant movement from June to August. In June, 61 percent approved of the protests and 59 percent approved of Black Lives Matter.
In between the June and August polls, the state saw violent protests in Madison that included the tearing down of two statues around the Capitol square.
The latest poll of 802 registered voters included 668 likely voters. The margin of error for the questions asked of registered voters was plus or minus 4 percentage points, while it was plus or minus 4.3 percentage points for the likely voter sample.
Forty-four percent of the sample identified themselves as Republicans, while 45 percent said they were Dems and 8 percent independents. That is in line with the long-term trend of 45 percent Republicans and 45 percent Dems.