Ever since Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump announced they were running for president, many have started formulating opinions about the two. What started off as just negative remarks on social media has turned into a much larger problem for the candidates.
Many may be aware that they are disliked, but the magnitude of unpopularity is astounding. They are even less popular among voters than those candidates from the 2012 presidential election, Barack Obama and Mitt Romney.
In this election, about 14 percent of voters are either choosing an alternative to Trump or Clinton or still haven't made up their minds, compared to 2012's rate which hovered around five percent.
As a result, more people are likely to vote for a third-party candidate or remain undecided. While the candidates for the 2012 election were unpopular, the amount of people voting for a third-party candidate or staying undecided went down over time as Election Day neared.
This is not the case for this election.
Surprisingly, the amount of people who are voting outside of the two candidates is increasing over time. It seems that as Election Day gets closer, and as the candidates build up their platform, voters are less likely to vote for either Clinton or Trump. Though the percentages are small now, it could cost the runners millions of votes.
In '08 and '12 Pres polls, the number of people choosing Other or Undecided fell over time. This year, it's going UP pic.twitter.com/HaLeLDueOY— Drew Linzer (@DrewLinzer) August 30, 2016
According to some recent polls on RealClear Politics, voters supporting either candidate only make up a fraction of all voters. When Green Party candidateJill Stein and Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson are added as options to the polls, nearly 20 percent chose a candidate other than Clinton or Trump or were undecided.
In a poll done by Reuters, about 21 percent of respondents said that they would vote for other candidates, refused to pick, or would not vote at all.
Due to the major party candidates' low levels of popularity, Johnson and Stein have a bigger chance this year than third-party candidates traditionally have. This shows up in polls, where Johnson and Stein have up to 12 percent of voters combined.
Currently, there are still many voters who have not made up their mind about who they will vote for this November. As Election Day nears, it will be interesting to see what unfolds.
Banner credit: Reuters