By Dave Andrusko
Editor’s note. This appears on page one of the November digital “Election Issue” of National Right to Life News.
PLEASE immediately forward the entire issue to pro-life friends and family.
If there’s anything we can say for certain–besides that pro-life Donald Trump is closing fast on pro-abortion Hillary Clinton–it is that whatever pro-lifers can do on behalf of unborn babies, it could easily be pivotal in an election that is expected to be decided by a razor-thin margin.
As reported on page four, “NRLC has set a goal to make 4.6 million voter contacts on behalf of the unborn in these last few days.” In what is expected could be critical.
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Here’s the latest as of late Friday morning, four days before Election Day.
Trump is closing the gap, almost by the hour, in those states, one or more of which he must win to become the next President, in addition to creating breathing space in “red” states that traditionally go Republican.
Reuters released a poll this morning that, as is typically the case, exaggerates Clinton’s standing. But the most important point is that her lead among early voters in pivotal states such as Florida and Ohio is much less than Obama’s four years ago.
In Florida “Clinton leads by 8 points among early voters,” according to Reuters’ Maurice Tamman. “In 2012, Obama led by about 15 points.” In Ohio “she leads by about 20 points among early voters. At this point in 2012, Obama led by about 30 points.”
Why? Tamman writes
It is not clear why Clinton’s early voting support has fallen short of Obama’s. The shift could indicate a broader cross-section of voters is casting early ballots than in 2012. But the drop might also foreshadow lower-than-expected turnout among the core Democratic constituencies who propelled Obama to victory in 2008 and 2012.
What did we learn in the last two days? Before we go into that, as we have posted a hundred times, any poll, no matter how scrupulously fair, is based on a projected turnout model. If fewer Clinton supporters vote on November 8 than the model suggests, or more Trump supporters than anticipated fulfill their civic duty (or both), all predictions could be as out of date as yesterday’s newspaper.
First and foremost, the latest surveys in some of “swing states,” one or more of which Trump must carry, are trending in his direction.
I do understand that if you average a bunch of polls, Clinton remains ahead. But as we approach the finish line it’s those last surveys that carry the most weight.
To wit (to name just a few states):
- New Hampshire. A WBUR/MassINC poll shows Trump leading by 2 points in a head-to-head with Clinton and one point in a four-way race that includes the Libertarian Party candidate and the Green Party candidate. Still another poll (Boston Globe/Suffolk University) has them tied at 42% in a four-way race.
- A University of Colorado poll finds Trump and Clinton tied at 39%.
- A Susquehanna Polling and Search survey reveals that Clinton’s lead over Trump is down to two points (45% to 43%) in Pennsylvania.
- In Michigan, a Fox News poll finds Clinton’s lead has shrunk to three points–47% to 44%.
- In the all-important state of North Carolina, Trump has erased Clinton’s advantage and now holds a 7 point advantage in a WRAL-TV/SurveyUSA poll.
What about today’s Washington Post/ABC News poll? That gives Clinton a three-point advantage–47% to 44%.
The most significant takeaway is the Post asked respondents which candidate they trusted most to handle five key issues. They were tied in one, Clinton had narrow leads in three, but Trump had a nine point advantage in handling “corruption” (48% to 39%).
Thursday’s Washington Post/ABC News poll numbers gave a more detailed demographic breakdown along with the important fact that Trump leads among those who are “most enthusiastic” by 5 points over Clinton.
What about the gender gap? Trump leads among men, 49% to 36% while Clinton’s advantage among women is 50% to 38%.
But, of course, there is a reason the Clinton campaign is so heavily working African-American communities. Not only does Clinton enjoy a large advantage among Black men, she has a huge advantage among Black women.
So Trump’s “gender gap” among women is wholly a function of African-American women’s overwhelming support for Mrs. Clinton.
Trump and Clinton are for all practical purposes tied among White women–43% for Trump and 42% for Clinton.
One other consideration, from yesterday’s more exhaustive explanation. Under the subhead, “Horse-race breakdown,” the Washington Post’s Emily Guskin and Scott Clement note
The daily tracking poll’s latest four-night wave finds voters splitting sharply along traditional political divisions, with Trump’s previously lagging support among core Republican groups now nearly matching Clinton’s wide support on the left. Trump holds 78 percent support among white evangelical Protestants, 77 percent among conservatives, 68 percent among rural voters and 59 percent among white men. Clinton answers with 81 percent support among liberals, 67 percent of those identifying with no religion, 60 percent of those in urban areas and 72 percent among non-whites.
Clinton and Trump receive similar support among fellow partisans, but Trump maintains an 18-point edge among political independents, significantly higher than Republicans have held in recent elections. Looking deeper at that group over a seven-day stretch, 77 percent of independents who say they lean Democratic prefer Clinton while a similar 80 percent who lean Republican favor Trump. But Trump holds a sizable 53-28 percent advantage among voters who say they don’t lean toward either party, a group that accounts for about 10 percent of likely voters. [Underlining added.]
If you read the actual poll and the explanation that accompanies it which is linked at ABC News, there are important added details that paint the change in much more vivid colors. For example:
The latest results, while steady for seven nights, reflect a sharp turnaround from a large Clinton lead in the first four nights of tracking, after a particularly difficult news cycle for Trump. Among other factors, there’s been consolidation for Trump among Republicans and GOP leaning independents (86 percent now back him, up from 80 percent) and improvement for him among pure independents (i.e., those who don’t lean toward either party), up from an even split to a large Trump advantage, 25-54 percent, Clinton-Trump, across the past seven nights (combined for a larger samples size). Seventeen percent of pure independents pick someone else.
Among Democrats and Democratic leaners, meanwhile, Trump’s support has gone from 5 to 9 percent, a slight change but a statistically significant one. Clinton’s has been essentially steady.
PARTY ID – The race is close even though self-identified Democrats outnumber Republicans among likely voters by 10 points, 38 to 28 percent. There are three reasons: One, this narrows to a 5-point gap, 48-43 percent, including independents who lean toward one party or the other. The second is Trump’s advantage among pure independents, as noted – even though they account for just 7 percent of all likely voters. And the third is the fact that Trump wins 9 percent of Democrats and Democratic leaners, while Clinton’s supported by 6 percent of Republicans and those who lean toward the GOP – another slight difference, and not statistically significant. But in contests this close, small differences add up.
So, Republicans consolidating behind Trump; even better numbers for him among Independents; and more Democrats voting for Trump than Republicans voting for Clinton. All this although we are to believe that self-identified Democrats outnumber self-identified Republicans by 10 points (38% to 28%).
Stay tuned to NRL News Today which will have up to the moment coverage all the way through next Tuesday.