The Lansing polling firm EPIC-MRA has released two Michigan polls in the last week. In the first survey, Democrat Joe Biden led Donald Trump by 12 points. Not exactly a data point the Trump campaign was interested in touting.
But frankly, that was nothing compared to the poll the firm released Monday, which showed Biden leading Trump by a whopping 16 points.
It's worth noting that those two polls are particularly bullish for Biden who, according to the Real Clear Politics average, leads Trump in Michigan by a still-sizable 8.6 points.
But what's most telling about the surveys, which were both in the field when Trump and Attorney General Bill Barr ordered the violent clearing of peaceful protesters in front of the White House, is the immediate dip in support for Trump.
Trump's disastrous Bible photo op took place on June 1. EPIC-MRA conducted the first poll of 600 likely voters from May 30 to June 3 and the second poll from May 31 to June 4. EPIC-MRA pollster Bernie Porn saw an immediate correlation between Trump's Bible debacle and his 4-point drop against Biden.
“That is, by the process of elimination, the only reason that you go from a 12-point lead to a 16-point lead,” Porn told MLive.com. “(Trump) went from 38% of people saying they would definitely vote to re-elect him to only 33% saying that they would definitely vote to re-elect him.”
Trump's approvals also suffered from the first poll to the next, with those holding a negative view of Trump rising 5 points from 56% to 61%, while the percentage of those with a positive view of Trump fell four points from 42% to 38%. The percentage of people saying the country was headed in the wrong direction also jumped from 63% in the first poll to 70% in the second poll.
Trump's drop in support was also evident in West Michigan, which leans more conservative and religious. According to the first poll, respondents in the region overwhelmingly favored Trump 57% to 41%, but in the second poll West Michigan respondents only favored Trump 48% to 46%. Part of that difference could also be a product of the fact that Trump supporters weren't super excited to talk to pollsters immediately after his pathetic display of authoritarian malice and faux spirituality. But national polling has also suggested that Trump using the Bible as a prop backfired with religious voters.
Any way you slice it, Trump just keeps heading in a dismal direction in Michigan, a state he eked out by less than half a percentage point in 2016. EPIC-MRA has conducted three polls since the beginning of the year showing Trump steadily cratering, from trailing Biden by four points in January, 50% - 44%, to trailing Biden by 12 points, 53% - 41%, and then shortly thereafter, lagging behind Biden by 16 points, 55% - 39%.
As always this far out, the trend line is what matters most here, and Trump appears to be in a death spiral in a battleground state that has some questioning whether it's really a battleground at all anymore.