Thursday, August 11, 2016
Republicans are again asking questions about Hillary Clinton's health, while Democrats continue to insist that Donald Trump release his tax returns. Most voters still believe major White House hopefuls should make public recent tax returns, but now most also think they should release their medical records, too.
A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone and online survey finds that 67% of Likely U.S. Voters think all presidential candidates should release at least their most recent tax returns to the public, although that's down slightly from 73% who felt that way a year ago. Just 23% disagree. (To see survey question wording, click here.)
In July 2012 during the last presidential race, only six percent (6%) thought the release of the most recent year's tax return was enough. Twenty-nine percent (29%) felt returns from the most recent two years were necessary, while 60% wanted to see more than that.
But 59% of voters also now believe all major presidential candidates should release at least their most recent medical records to the public. That’s up dramatically from 38% in May 2014 when questions about Clinton's health were first being raised. Thirty percent (30%) don’t think candidates should have to release their recent medical records, while 11% are undecided.
Interestingly, Democrats (62%) believe even more strongly than Republicans (58%) and voters not affiliated with either major party (57%) that presidential candidates should release their recent medical records. Most Republicans (59%) favor release of the most recent tax returns, but they're less supportive than Democrats (77%) and unaffiliateds (63%) are.
The survey of 1,000 Likely Voters was conducted on August 9-10, 2016 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.
Rasmussen Reports' latest weekly White House Watch survey finds Clinton with 43% support to Trump’s 40%. Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson picks up eight percent (8%) of the vote, while Green Party nominee Jill Stein trails with two percent (2%).
Just 49% of voters who support Trump for president think the candidates should release their most recent tax returns, compared to 82% of voters who support Clinton. Voters who back Clinton (63%) are slightly more supportive of candidates releasing their medical records compared to Trump supporters (58%).
Younger voters feel less strongly than their elders do that candidates should release their recent medical records and tax returns.
Last year’s survey found that 80% of all voters think it is likely that a candidate is hiding something of significance if he or she refuses to release tax returns, including 47% who say it's Very Likely.
A plurality of voters believe Clinton and Trump are less honest than most politicians, but Republicans have a lot more confidence in Trump’s honesty than Democrats do in the honesty of Clinton.
Republicans and unaffiliated voters tend to see Trump's lifetime of business experience as good training for the White House. Most Democrats do not. GOP voters aren't nearly as worried as the others that Trump's business interests may be a potential conflict of interest problem down the road.
Wall Street Journal columnist Peggy Noonan wrote earlier this year that the only person who can beat Trump is Trump himself, and so far voters think that's exactly what he's doing.
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