Half of voters see Biden as honest and trustworthy; a third say same of Trump

Jamie BallardData Journalist
October 30, 2020, 7:00 PM UTC

With just a few days until the election, Economist/YouGov data finds that about half (49%) of registered voters believe that Joe Biden is honest and trustworthy, while just over one-third (35%) apply the same label to Donald Trump.  

The percentage of voters who perceive Biden in such terms has steadily risen over in recent weeks. In mid-September, 38% of registered voters said the former VP was honest and trustworthy. Heading into the election, that number has increased nine points, to 49%.    

This rise is partly driven by Independents. When surveyed in mid-September, 27% of Independents said they considered the former vice president honest and trustworthy, a figure which has since risen to 44% – an increase of 17 percentage points. 

There has also been a noticeable improvement among members of Biden’s party. The most recent data finds that 86% of Democrats think the former vice president is honest and trustworthy, up slightly from 74% who said the same when surveyed on September 13-15.  

In contrast, Republicans consistently give a low score to Biden on this measure. The most recent polling finds that only 7% of Republicans believe Biden is honest and trustworthy, while 88% believe he isn’t. 

One in three say Donald Trump is honest and trustworthy 

As for the current president, just over one-third (35%) of registered voters believe that he is honest and trustworthy. This figure has remained relatively steady over the last several weeks. 

Unsurprisingly Republicans were much more likely to consider the president honest and trustworthy, at 78%. However, only three in 10 (29%) Independents this week feel the same way (down from 36% last week). This means that Biden has opened up a 15 point lead over Trump with Independents on this measure, where only a few weeks ago the candidates had been closely matched among this group. 

Related: Voters think the Trump family is more corrupt than the Biden family 

See the toplines and crosstabs from this week’s Economist/YouGov Poll   

Methodology: The Economist survey was conducted by YouGov using a nationally representative sample of 1,500 registered voters interviewed online between October 25 - 27, 2020. This sample was weighted according to gender, age, race, and education based on the American Community Survey, conducted by the US Bureau of the Census, as well as 2016 Presidential vote, registration status, geographic region, and news interest. Respondents were selected from YouGov’s opt-in panel to be representative of all US citizens. The margin of error is approximately 3.1% for the overall sample.  

Image: Getty