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Poll: Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump tied going into Democratic convention

The Democratic Ticket, pt. 2
The Democratic Ticket, pt. 2 13:09

By Sarah Dutton, Jennifer De Pinto, Fred Backus and Anthony Salvanto

In polling conducted after the Republican convention and Hillary Clinton's announcement of Tim Kaine as her running mate, the race for president nationwide remains tied. Clinton and Trump each have the support of 42 percent of voters. Including voters who lean toward a candidate, Trump has a one-point edge. Support for both Trump and Clinton has increased by two points since before Trump's convention and Clinton's VP pick.

Trump's standing after his convention is a bit better than that of Mitt Romney, who received no bump four years ago.

The Democratic Ticket, pt. 1 12:24

In recent elections, conventions have rarely been turning points in the presidential election. In 2008, Republican John McCain received a small boost of four points after his convention. Both he and Romney lost the election in November. The last Republican candidate to receive a double-digit increase in support after a convention was George H.W. Bush in 1988, and he went on to win the presidency.

When leaners are included - voters who are undecided when initially asked their vote preference but lean toward a candidate - Trump leads by 1 point.

The race remains the same when the Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson is added.

Most registered voters say they have made up their minds about who to support. Ninety-four percent of Clinton voters say their choice is set, while 90 percent of Trump voters say their minds are made up about him.

The Running Mates

On the heels of the Republican convention, Democratic Hillary Clinton announced that Sen. Tim Kaine would be her vice presidential running mate - something that was received positively by voters, especially Democrats. In interviews conducted on Saturday and Sunday, 49 percent of Democrats are glad Hillary Clinton has picked Kaine as her running mate, as are 31 percent of voters overall.

Trump and Pence's shared values 01:33

After Pence's appearance at their party's convention, Republican voters are also pleased with their nominee's choice of running mate. Sixty-one percent of Republicans are glad that Donald Trump picked Indiana Governor Mike Pence as his running mate, while just 15 percent wish he had named someone else.

The Republican National Convention has improved Pence's standing among Republican voters. Before Pence spoke at the convention, seven in 10 Republican voters didn't have an opinion of him, but now 44 percent view him favorably, while just 3 percent view him unfavorably. About half don't yet have an opinion of him. Favorable views of Pence among registered voters overall have also risen.

Shoring Up the Base?

After his party's convention, Trump is getting the support of 81 percent of Republicans - a slight uptick from before the convention, but short of the 90 percent Romney was getting after the conventions four years ago. His support among conservatives has grown; Trump gets the backing of 72 percent of conservatives now, up from 66 percent.

More liberals are now backing Clinton compared to just over a week ago, and her support among Democrats is up slightly.

The Convention and the Republican Party

Seventy-four percent of registered voters watched at least some of the 2016 Republican National Convention, up from 64 percent who watched it when Mitt Romney was nominated in 2012. Eight in 10 Republican voters watched at least some of the convention, as did about seven in 10 Democrats and independents.

The Cleveland convention has strengthened the perception of party unity among Republicans, though many continue to see their party as divided. Now 44 percent of Republican registered voters think the Republican Party is united, while 53 percent describe it as divided. Still, views of party unity are far better than they were before the Republican Convention began.

When asked directly how the convention affected their views of Trump, 50 percent said watching the convention made them think better of Donald Trump, while 36 percent said it made them think worse of the nominee.

But the convention had a less favorable impact on views of the Republican Party overall - as many voters who watched the convention said it made them think worse (43 percent) of the Republican Party as better (42 percent).

Among Republicans who watched the convention, 83 percent said they now have a more favorable view of Trump, and 69 percent have a more positive view of their party.

Just after the convention, 57 percent of voters say Trump has made it clear what he wants to accomplish as president, including eight in 10 Republicans.

In contrast, positive views of Ted Cruz - who conspicuously did not endorse Donald Trump during his speech at the Republican Convention - have dropped precipitously among Republican voters. Now just 25 percent of Republican voters view Cruz favorably, down from 44 percent right before the convention. 49 percent of Republican voters view the Texas senator unfavorably, up from 25 percent.

Views of Trump

Trump's convention has improved views of him on three of the four presidential qualities in the poll, but majorities still see him as unprepared for the presidency (58 percent), not honest (56 percent), and lacking the temperament and personality to be president (61 percent). Most voters -- 56 percent -- continue to see him as a strong leader; those views have not changed since May.

Perceptions of Trump on all these qualities are much more positive among Republican voters: 86 percent think he is a strong leader, seven in ten see him as prepared for the presidency, and over six in ten think he is honest and has the temperament to be president. But views among independents are more negative, with the exception of being a strong leader.

And although his favorable rating has improved since before his convention (up four points), most voters -- 53 percent -- continue to have a negative opinion of him. But 66 percent of Republican voters see him favorably.

Views of Clinton

Hillary Clinton heads into her convention in a better position than Trump on some qualities, but still facing deficits. Half of voters see her as having the right temperament, being prepared for the presidency, and as a strong leader. But two in three voters continue to think she is not honest and trustworthy -- just 29 percent saying that she is trustworthy.

This poll was conducted by telephone July 22-24, 2016 among a random sample of 1,363 adults nationwide, including 1,118 registered voters. Data collection was conducted on behalf of CBS News by SSRS of Media, PA. Phone numbers were dialed from samples of both standard land-line and cell phones.

The poll employed a random digit dial methodology. For the landline sample, a respondent was randomly selected from all adults in the household. For the cell sample, interviews were conducted with the person who answered the phone.

Interviews were conducted in English and Spanish using live interviewers.

The data have been weighted to reflect U.S. Census figures on demographic variables.

The error due to sampling for results based on the entire sample could be plus or minus three percentage points. The margin of error for the sample of registered voters is four points. The error for subgroups may be higher and is available by request. The margin of error includes the effects of standard weighting procedures which enlarge sampling error slightly.

This poll release conforms to the Standards of Disclosure of the National Council on Public Polls.

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