US Election: Why the first exit polls are good news for Trump

Brianne Tolj
·2-min read

Early polls appear to favour Donald Trump in the race for the US Presidency.

Exit polls conducted on Tuesday (local time) by CNN show 34 per cent of voters believe the economy is the most important issue when considering who to elect.

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Six out of every 10 Trump supporters have said the economy is their biggest concern, according to CNN – hinting the results could be very good for the incumbent.

Six out of every 10 Trump supporters have said the economy is their biggest concern. Source: CNN/Twitter
Six out of every 10 Trump supporters have said the economy is their biggest concern. Source: CNN/Twitter

Meanwhile, racial inequality was cited by 21 per cent of polled voters and the coronavirus pandemic by just 18 per cent. Crime and healthcare followed at 11 per cent each.

The coronavirus has infected more than 9.4 million people in the United States this year and killed more than 230,000.

A record 102 million Americans voted in the days and weeks leading up to Tuesday’s (local time) election.

The polls will begin closing from 10am AEDT.

As of 11:15am AEDT, Trump has won Kentucky, and Democrat Biden has carried Vermont.

They are the first two states called in the 2020 presidential election, which the US and the world eagerly await.

Trump wins eight electoral votes from Kentucky, while Biden takes three for winning Vermont.

An Edison Research exit poll released on Tuesday showed a third of voters listed the economy as the issue that mattered most.

In the national exit poll, four out of 10 voters said they think the effort to contain the virus is going “very badly.”

In the battleground states of Florida and North Carolina, five of 10 voters said the national response to the pandemic is going “somewhat or very badly.”

Half the voters said it was more important to contain the coronavirus even if it hurts the economy, according to the poll, which is based on in-person interviews with voters on Tuesday, in-person interviews at early voting centres before Election Day and telephone interviews with people who voted by mail.

Supporters of Trump and Biden seen in Florida on Tuesday. Source: AAP
In the battleground states of Florida and North Carolina, five of 10 voters said the national response to the pandemic is going “somewhat or very badly.” Source: AAP

The poll found that nine out of 10 voters had already decided whom to vote for before October, and nine out of 10 voters said they were confident that their state would accurately count votes.

Other issues that were top of mind for voters include racial inequality, crime and safety and healthcare policy.

With Nick Whigham and Reuters.

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