Charlie Cook, editor and publisher of the Cook Political Report, talked about recent presidential polls in an appearance Wednesday night on MSNBC's 'The Last Word' with host Lawrence O'Donnell. Cook pointed out an interesting polling data point: voters that have an unfavorable view of both President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden break for Biden 49 to 18. In 2016, voters that disliked both Trump and Hillary Clinton went with Trump by a 20-point margin.
CHARLIE COOK, COOK POLITICAL REPORT: Everything I hear is that their private data, the Trump campaign data looks pretty much like the public campaign data. What I find very interesting is when you go back and you look at the exit polls in 2016, 60% of voters had an unfavorable view of Donald Trump. 60. 54% had an unfavorable view of Hillary Clinton. And you had 19% had an unfavorable view of both of them. And then they voted, though, for Trump by a 20-point margin.
I asked the Quinnipiac people -- they're terrific, by the way -- I asked them today if they could run something to see, okay, of the people that have an unfavorable view of both Donald Trump and Joe Biden, how do they break? And Biden is ahead 49-18 among the people that dislike both of them while they cut by a 20-point margin against Hillary Clinton.
So this is something, it's very, very -- to me it's really interesting that it's not just that President Trump's unfavorables are sky high but that they look like they're going to bite him in the -- Biden is just not in the same place that Hillary Clinton was as this point. And you know, we'll see about November.
LAWRENCE O'DONNELL, MSNBC: Yeah. So that lesser of two evils voter, which is that final decider, they're the people who are making up their finds two or three days ahead of time, day of. At the moment they are leaning heavily to Joe Biden even though they don't like him, they don't like Donald Trump more.
COOK: That's right. You had a group of people that were just really conflicted going into election day. And that's why the election sort of popped so much. Now, to me when I look at some of these undecided voters this year or go back six months, you had a group of people that had -- they thought the economy was doing really well and they gave President Trump complete credit for it but they had real l doubts, reservations about his character, about him as a person, about his leadership style, all of that.
But they kept in balance, the strong economy balanced off his negative. But the thing is if you take out the strong economy, even if it's not a headwind, if you take that off the scale I think a lot of the doubts, the reservations that people have about him as a person will start rising up. So maybe he doesn't have a headwind because of the economy but he's going to lose the tailwind that I think was the one thing that was kind of keeping him going last year.