With just two months left to decide America’s next commander-in-chief, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is leading Hillary Clinton by double digits among voters who are currently in the armed forces or have previously served, according to a new poll out Wednesday.
A survey by NBC News/Survey Monkey found that Trump had a 19-point advantage with those military-affiliated voters, 55 percent to Clinton’s 36 percent. Forty-seven percent of active military and veteran voters, however, said they are not confident in Trump’s ability to serve as an effective commander-in-chief.
Among all registered voters, the poll found that about 59 percent express that same lack of confidence in Trump’s ability to command the military. Just 39 percent of all registered voters would feel confident.
In the survey, Clinton fares better when it comes to the issue of handling nuclear weapons. About 44 percent of voters overall would trust Clinton on the use of the country’s nuclear arsenal, but about a quarter of voters wouldn’t trust either Clinton or Trump.
The survey results come just as Trump is expected to give a major defense policy speech Wednesday at the Union League of Philadelphia, where he will call for an end to the sequester on defense spending. The GOP nominee will also push foreign policy proposals that “dispense with regime change and democracy creation” in his address.
Recently, about 88 retired general and admirals signed a letter backing Trump.
Clinton, meanwhile, has also touted her credentials for the commander-in-chief post, releasing a list Wednesday of 95 retired generals and admirals endorsing her White House run.
The Democratic nominee has also released cable television ads in key battleground states, tackling Trump’s record of making controversial comments insulting veterans like Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, and Gold Star families like the parents of the late Capt. Humayun Khan.
The NBC News/Survey Monkey poll was conducted online from Aug. 29 to Sept. 4, among 32,226 registered voters, with about 3,358 respondents who have previously served or are currently serving in the military.