Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s favorability rating has swung a net 15 points in the past three months, according to a new Quinnipiac poll released Friday.
Quinnipiac pollster Peter Brown, the assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, is blaming the renewed interest in last year’s terrorist attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi for the drop.
“Her score is down substantially from her all-time high score in February. The drop in her favorability is substantial among men, Republicans and independent voters. One reason for her drop may be that 48 per cent of voters blame her either a little or a lot for the death of the American ambassador in Benghazi,” Brown said in a statement.
Clinton remains largely popular — 52 per cent of poll respondents say they view her favourably, compared with just 40 per cent who give her an unfavorable rating. But that’s down from her all-time high in Quinnipiac’s February survey, in which she had a 61-34 net favorability rating.
The big swings come from Republicans and, especially, Independents. In February, Clinton’s favorability rating stood at a positive 59-35 among Independents. Now, that positive score is just 46-42.
The poll comes amid renewed interest and hearings over last year’s Benghazi terrorist attack and a focus on the editing of talking points in its aftermath.
According to the poll, Clinton still holds relatively large 8-point leads over potential 2016 Republican presidential challengers Jeb Bush and Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.). Both Bush and Paul, however, are far less known by the general public.
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