Americans Overwhelmingly say Clinton Won the First Debate

Trump ClintonAmericans say Hillary Clinton won the first debate over Donald Trump by a near-record margin last week.

The ABC News/Washington Post survey found 53% of Americans say Clinton won the debate while just 18% think Trump prevailed. That’s the second-largest margin since ABC and the Post began asking the question in 1976. The largest gap was Mitt Romney beating Barack Obama 69-18% following their first debate in 2012.

Trump also is on the short side of other results in this poll, produced for ABC byLanger Research Associates. Fifty-four percent say Clinton mainly got her facts right in Monday’s debate; just 29 percent think Trump mainly stuck to the facts. And while 21 percent think Clinton intentionally lied, 32 percent say that about Trump.


The view that Clinton won extends across demographic groups other than Republicans; the only difference is the degree. Even among Republicans, fewer than half, 45 percent, say Trump won, while 83 percent of Democrats pick Clinton. Independents go 50-14 percent in Clinton’s favor. And even conservatives see Clinton as the winner, if by a comparatively narrow 40-27 percent.


There are other divisions. Men say Clinton won by 48-19 percent; among women it’s 58-18 percent. Whites divide by 44-26 percent in Clinton’s favor; nonwhites pick Clinton by 72-5 percent. And while whites who lack a college degree divide 35-29 percent between Clinton and Trump, that expands to 58-21 percent among whites with a four-year degree.