CNBC News Releases

CNBC and Change Research Release Results of Latest “States of Play” Poll


Latest CNBC/Change Research Poll Shows Biden Firming His Lead in Battleground States

ENGLEWOOD CLIFFS, N.J., September 9, 2020 – CNBC and Change Research today announced the results of their latest joint "States of Play" poll, conducted September 4– September 6.

The poll finds that Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden leads President Donald Trump by four points (49% to 45%) among likely voters in the six major battleground states (Arizona, Florida, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin).

However with last week's historic stock market gains, 67% of likely national voters say the stock market is in excellent or good condition while only 40% of likely national voters say so of the U.S. job market and of the U.S. economy. While Trump has consistently been given his highest marks for his handling of the stock market (55% of likely battleground voters approve), 48% of likely voters in the battleground agree that "the stock market is an accurate reflection of the strength of the real economy."

On the question of who would do a better job handling recovery from a recession between Trump and Biden, likely battleground voters are split 50-50 between Trump/Republicans and Biden/Democrats. But so far, a 52% majority of likely battleground voters disagree that Trump has done enough to help working Americans make it through the current economic downturn.

CNBC and Change Research polled over 4,100 likely general election voters from the six previously noted battleground states, as well as over 1,900 likely general election voters nationally, to determine economic sentiment among voters. Additional key findings from the most recent CNBC/Change Research "States of Play" poll include:

  • The economy, jobs and cost of living remain the number one issue in this election, with 43% of likely battleground voters saying this was one of the top three issues from a list of fifteen issues.
  • For the first time the poll included "political corruption" in the list of issues and it was almost tied with COVID-19 (38% corruption, 35% COVID of likely voters in the battleground) in the top three list of issues.
  • Base Republicans were considerably more likely to say political corruption was a top issue compared to base Democrats (47% and 26% of likely voters in the battleground, respectively), and it was also important to 42% of independents.
  • The third tier of top issues included health care and prescription drug costs (26%), which have consistently been important, as well as 'racism and discrimination (27%) and 'law and order' (29%).
  • For base Democrats, racism and discrimination was the second most critical issue (51%) after COVID-19, with the economy and health care costs tied for third (32% and 34%, respectively).
  • Base Republicans, on the other hand, prioritize law and order (58%), the economy (53%), and political corruption (47%).
  • The mental and physical fitness of both candidates has been brought up in various ways during their campaigns and majorities of likely voters believe that both men are mentally unfit:
  • 55% of likely national voters, 51% of likely battleground voters say Trump is mentally unfit to be President.
  • 52% of likely national and battleground voters say Biden is mentally unfit to be President.
  • Voters are more confident in their physical fitness:
  • 51% of likely national voters and 52% of likely voters in the battleground say Trump is physically fit to be President.
  • 57% likely national voters and 54% of likely battleground voters say Biden is physically fit to be President.

CNBC Washington D.C. Correspondent Eamon Javers and Reporter Kayla Tausche will reveal the results of the CNBC/Change Research "States of Play Poll" today, Wednesday, September 9 throughout CNBC's Business Day programming with additional coverage on-air tomorrow, Thursday, September 10.

For more information on the survey including the full results and methodology and in-depth articles, go to:


Between September 4-6, 2020, Change Research surveyed 1,902 likely general election voters nationally and 4,143 likely general election voters in the battleground states of Arizona, Florida, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. The margin of error as traditionally calculated among the national sample is ±2.25% and among the battleground sample is ±1.4%. Change Research reaches voters via targeted online ads that point people to an online survey instrument. Its Dynamic Online Sampling establishes and continuously rebalances advertising targets across region, age, gender, race, and partisanship to dynamically deliver large samples that accurately reflect the demographics of a population. In the national survey and the survey of battleground states, post-stratification was done on gender, age, region, education, race, and 2016 presidential vote.

For additional methodological information, visit

About CNBC:

CNBC is the recognized world leader in business news and provides real-time financial market coverage and business content consumed by more than 355 million people per month across all platforms. The network's 14 live hours a day of business programming in North America (weekdays from 5:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m. ET) is produced at CNBC's global headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, N.J., and includes reports from CNBC News bureaus worldwide. CNBC at night features a mix of new reality programming, CNBC's highly successful series produced exclusively for CNBC and a number of distinctive in-house documentaries.

CNBC also offers content through its vast portfolio of digital products such as:, which provides real-time financial market news and information to CNBC's investor audience; CNBC Make It, a digital destination focused on making you smarter about how you earn, save and spend your money; CNBC PRO, a premium service that provides in-depth access to Wall Street; a suite of CNBC mobile apps for iOS and Android devices; Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple Siri voice interfaces; and streaming services including Apple TV, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Android TV and Samsung Smart TVs. To learn more, visit

Members of the media can receive more information about CNBC and its programming on the NBCUniversal Media Village Web site at For more information about NBCUniversal, please visit