Survey: Federal IT Pros Favor Clinton Over Trump

U.S. presidential candidates Donald Trump, left, and Hillary Clinton.

U.S. presidential candidates Donald Trump, left, and Hillary Clinton. Mary Altaffer, Chuck Burton/AP File photo

But the agencies may be filling vacancies regardless of who wins.

The government’s techies prefer Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton to Republican nominee Donald Trump in a big way.

According to a survey conducted by Meritalk, a Virginia-based public-private partnership, 52 percent of federal IT professionals plan to vote for Clinton, while only 32 percent will cast their vote for Trump. The survey polled 100 senior level IT personnel across civilian, intelligence and defense agencies.

Among IT pros who are registered Democrats, Clinton captures 87 percent of the vote to Trump’s 8 percent. Registered Republicans favor Trump over Clinton by a margin of 65 percent to 23 percent, suggesting Clinton outperforms Trump outside party lines. Twelve percent of tech-inclined Republicans will sit the election out, while only 5 percent of Democrats will.

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Respondents believe Clinton (55 percent) will do more to bring innovation to federal IT than Trump (45 percent). Clinton has released a tech agenda that calls for the expansion of the Obama administration’s tech startup teams, while Trump’s scant statements about technology have included calling for the “shutdown” of some parts of the internet and inaccurately suggesting the United States is behind other countries in cybersecurity technologies.

Those surveyed felt cybersecurity (67 percent) should be the top priority for the next president, far ahead of IT modernization (19 percent) and acquisition (10 percent), which were the next most important options.

In any case, the survey makes clear that many techies in government will be looking for new jobs regardless of which candidate is elected. Twenty eight percent of those surveyed said they plan to leave government employment if Clinton wins; 24 percent said they’ll leave is Trump wins.