A million times we talked about how the major-party candidates in 2016 were the least popular in history. Literally we said this one million times. At the beginning it was a curiosity: How would voters respond to two deeply unpopular candidates? Over time it became background noise, an asterisk in analysis of what was happening. A parenthetical. By Election Day, it barely warranted a mention. Part of it was that voters who supported one candidate hated the other, and so it just became part of the overall contest.

But it seems likely that this dissatisfaction played a role in what happened last month.

On Tuesday morning, George Washington University released polling assessing attitudes about Donald Trump, his policy priorities and attitudes about him and Hillary Clinton. Among the questions asked was an assessment of how favorably people viewed each of the candidates, with the pollsters finding an uptick in attitudes about Trump after the election, relative to a poll in early October.

The poll also found that 11 percent of Americans still view both candidates unfavorably (the yellow circle on the graph below) -- more than three times as many as view them both positively (purple).

There's a split, though, among those who voted for Trump and those who voted for Clinton. More than 9-in-10 Trump voters view only him favorably (red circle) and only 2 percent view neither him nor Clinton favorably. Fewer Clinton voters view only her favorably (blue); more view neither that way.

As we saw throughout the campaign, part of that split falls along gender lines. Democratic men are more likely to view neither Trump nor Clinton favorably than any other group. Only 6-in-10 of that group viewed only Clinton positively.

This isn't necessarily a function of liberal Bernie Sanders backers remaining reticent about the eventual Democratic nominee. Liberal Democrats were more likely to view Clinton but not Trump positively than were moderate Democrats -- who were more likely to view only Trump positively.

One important split was by age. Among whites, one-fifth of millennials viewed both candidates negatively, nearly three times as many as the number of older whites who did.

This also doesn't seem to be related to economic insecurity, either. Men with jobs were more than three times as likely to say they disliked both candidates than were women with jobs.

The poll data follows the election, and follows an improvement in Trump's numbers. That would suggest that fewer people dislike both candidates now than did before the election (since more people are saying they like Trump). The demographic splits, though, parallel what we saw in polling about Clinton for months: Younger voters were more skeptical, as were men.

These were, as you may have heard, the two least-popular candidates in modern history. Among that subset who saw both unfavorably, though, the damage to Clinton was likely more than enough to cost her the race.