CNN’s First Poll Since Trump Was Hospitalized Shows Biden Opening 16-Point National Lead Among Likely Voters

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Former Vice President Joe Biden has extended his lead over President Donald Trump to 16 points among likely voters, a new poll released Tuesday by CNN finds.

The poll — conducted by CNN and SRSS by telephone between October 1-4 — sampled 1,205 respondents, 1,001 of whom described themselves as likely voters. The poll is the first set of data presented by CNN after the first presidential debate and Trump’s coronavirus diagnosis. Biden currently leads Trump 56-41 among all respondents, up from 51-43 in early September. Biden holds an even larger advantage (57-41) when limiting the sample to likely voters. (RELATED: Buried In The Latest ABC Poll Is Trump’s Biggest Advantage Over Biden)

WASHINGTON, DC – OCTOBER 05: U.S. President Donald Trump waves upon return to the White House from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center on October 05, 2020 in Washington, DC. Trump spent three days hospitalized for coronavirus. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Biden is leading Trump on several key issues, especially the pandemic. 59 percent said Biden would better handle the pandemic compared to 38 percent for Trump, and Biden’s general favorability rating (52) significantly outpaces Trump’s (39). Furthermore, Trump has previously led Biden when respondents are asked to pick which candidate would be a better economic steward, yet Tuesday’s poll showed the candidates tied at 49 percent. Trump led Biden by one point on the economy in early September and eight points in mid August.

CNN’s poll did find that Trump still leads Biden when supporters’ enthusiasm is taken into account. In fact, Trump picked up 6 points of support among non-college educated white males (67). Similar recent polls suggest that Trump holds a significant advantage among likely voters who plan to cast their ballots on election day.

Trump returned to the White House Monday evening after completing several days of coronavirus treatment at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. Prior to his departure, he tweeted that he plans to “soon” hit the campaign trail again. (RELATED: White House Physician Sean Conley Repeatedly Dodges Questions About When Trump Last Tested Negative For Coronavirus)