Sheriff Clarke Headed For Defeat

| Tom Jensen

A new PPP survey of Milwaukee County finds that Sheriff David Clarke is very unpopular, and has almost no chance at being reelected next year.

Only 31% of voters in the county approve of the job Clarke is doing, to 62% who disapprove. Beyond that, voters consider him to be somewhat of a national embarrassment. 65% say that he’s had a negative impact on Milwaukee County’s image nationally, to only 29% who think he’s had a positive impact. White voters (34/59 approval for Clarke) and black voters (22/72 approval for Clarke) are united in their negative feelings toward him.

Among Democratic primary voters, just 13% say they would support Clarke in a Democratic primary today to 82% who say they would prefer someone else. Clarke basically has no path to reelection as a Democrat at this point. He probably could be the Republican candidate for Sheriff- he gets a 72/23 approval rating from them- but then he would have virtually no chance of winning the general election either way.

Donald Trump has a 30/63 approval rating in Milwaukee County, but Scott Walker’s actually even worse off at 30/66. Walker trails a generic Democratic opponent in the county by 35 points at 64/29. To put that in perspective, Walker lost Milwaukee County by 27 points while winning by 5 statewide in 2014. But looking at it from another angle, Hillary Clinton won Milwaukee County by 37 points in November and still managed to narrowly lose statewide, so it’s hard to say exactly what Walker’s poor position in Milwaukee means for his overall prospects next year. 

The one elected official we did find popular in Milwaukee County? Longtime Congresswoman Gwen Moore, who 52% of voters approve of to only 32% who disapprove. We don’t find too many members of Congress who are that well liked. Her constituents evidently appreciate that she has been working hard for them.

Full results here


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