Running a live blog for entire convention just in case.

I will interject occasional things below as the evening proceeds

Despite what you may have heard, polling four years ago was unusually accurate at a national level. That’s worth keeping in mind when considering now-President Trump’s responses to what the polls are saying currently.
As it stands, Trump trails former vice president Joe Biden by 8.2 points (FiveThirtyEight) or 7.7 points (RealClearPolitics). The differences stem largely from how the averages are calculated, but each tells the same story: Trump trails.
Comparing that margin to the past 50-plus years of presidential polls, as also compiled by FiveThirtyEight, we see that Biden’s lead is stronger coming into the Democratic convention than any Democratic candidate over that period. In 1976, Jimmy Carter came into the convention with a 6.9-point lead, according to FiveThirtyEight’s recreated average of polls at the time. In 1996, Bill Clinton’s lead entering the Democratic convention was 5.1 points. Both of those candidates went on to win.
What should be more worrisome for Trump is that, even if the conventions were proceeding as normal, the bump candidates have gotten from conventions in the past 20 years have been modest. Since 2000, the biggest shift in the polling average between the start of the convention and a week later was seen by then-Vice President Al Gore, who improved by 11 points. That lead eventually faded.


Over the weekend, Trump introduced a new argument to support his claim that his supporters are loath to be honest with pollsters. (This is somewhat at odds with his “suppression polls” claim, but consistency is not one of Trump’s hallmarks.) He said during a news briefing and again on Fox that 62 percent of people say they’re not honest with pollsters — apparently an effort to retrofit a July poll from the Cato Institute, which dealt broadly with people’s comfort levels in being honest in their political discourse to polling specifically.
In other words, Cato found that more than half of Americans have withheld their opinions at some point out of concern they’d be considered offensive. To Trump, this apparently means that 62 percent of Americans tell pollsters they support Biden instead of him.
As always, Trump isn’t trying to accurately convey information about polling; he’s trying to blur that reality. In this case, the reality is that Biden has a healthy lead over Trump, one which is probably stronger coming into the convention than that seen by any Democrat since at least 1968.


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