Minnesota's status as the state with the longest streak of voting for a Democratic presidential candidate looks safe.
This wasn't the case four months ago, when polling showed Hillary Clinton, the clear frontrunner for that party, testing badly against Republican candidates: She was losing to U.S. Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Marco Rubio (R-Florida).
In the hypothetical posed back then, Clinton's lead over Donald Trump was just 43 percent to 38 percent. But now that those two candidates are essentially all that's left, the picture's a lot prettier for liberals.
A Star Tribune poll released yesterday indicates Minnesota's electorate has taken a closer look at — or been unable to shield their eyes from — the presidential race, and stand ready to hand Hillary a decisive victory over the real estate mogul and professional wrestling bit player.
Clinton leads Trump 48 percent to 35 percent statewide, and would even get 13 percent of the Republican vote, a shockingly high number given how unpopular she has always been with the political right. Trump's support levels are lowest among voters in Hennepin and Ramsey counties (26 percent), women (29 percent), and voters 18-34 (29 percent) or 35-49 (33 percent).
Switch Hillary Clinton out for Bernie Sanders, presently running a distant, hopeless second place in the Democratic field, and the margin gets even worse: Sanders would claim 53 percent of the vote to Trump's 38 percent. Interestingly, that contest pushes the numbers up on both sides, suggesting a Bernie-vs-Donald race draws a starker contrast between candidates than does the Clinton-vs.-Trump matchup, which leaves 17 percent of respondents "undecided."
But not about the candidates themselves: Another piece of the Star Tribune poll found that both Clinton and Trump rate poorly on public perception of whether they're "honest" (37 percent for Clinton, 34 percent for Trump) or "not honest" (56 percent for Hillary, Trump 54 percent). Clinton's 13 percent margin in the head-to-head is probably explained by another question in that same round.
Asked who has the "temperament and credentials to be effective as president," some 52 percent of voters think Clinton does (41 percent of independents; hell, 21 percent of Republicans) compared to a ridiculous 26 percent "yes" rate for Trump, who is deemed competent by just 30 percent of independents, and 49 percent of Republicans.
The presumptive Republican nominee for president is someone most Minnesota Republicans do not think is qualified to be president.