Less than two weeks to go in the presidential election, Florida is the most important battleground with four new polls showing a close contest. With early voting already having started, the candidates continue to work the Sunshine State and win its 29 electoral college votes.
Survey USA took a poll for Bay News 9/News 13 which has Hillary Clinton out front with 48 percent while Donald Trump pulls 45 percent. Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson takes 2 percent while Jill Stein, the Green Party’s nominee, gets 1 percent.
The Survey USA poll shows Clinton doing well with Hispanics, African Americans, women and younger voters. She also leads Trumps with independents in that poll. Trump is running strongly in the Survey USA poll with men, evangelicals and gun owners.
Trump has made up ground in a poll from Florida Atlantic University’s (FAU) Business and Economics Polling Initiative (BEPI). Earlier this month, FAU released a poll showing Clinton ahead by 6 percent but, on Wednesday, the university unveiled a new poll showing her lead reduced by half though she is still ahead 46 percent to 43 percent. Johnson takes 3 percent and Stein garners 2 percent.
According to the FAU poll, Trump does well with white voters and in the northern and central parts of the Sunshine State while Clinton is ahead with independents and in South Florida.
Kevin Wagner, a professor of political science at FAU, noted that Clinton is doing well with Floridians who have already voted and said that it could come down to whoever has the better turnout operation.
“Sec. Clinton is building a substantial lead among the early voters in our sample,” Wagner said. “That could create a difficult lead to overcome for Mr. Trump on Election Day.”
Politico released a poll from the Associated Industries of Florida (AIF), a Republican-leaning business group. The AIF poll has Clinton ahead with 44 percent while Trump takes 41 percent. Johnson is at 4 percent while Stein lags with 1 percent.
“On the presidential race we’ve found Clinton with a consistent 3 percent - 5 percent lead in surveys that attempt to reflect Florida’s actual electorate,” AIF noted. “While her lead is within the margin of error for this survey, we would suggest that 3 percent really isn’t as close as it may seem in the state of Florida. While we don’t have access to the final book closing statistics for this election, we believe somewhere between 9 – 9.2 million voters are likely to vote in this election. In this turnout scenario, 3 percent - 5 percent represents a 275k to 450k vote margin assuming these margins hold. This is in all reality a landslide in our great state. Based on his consistent failure to improve his standing with non-white voters, voters under 50 and females, it seems fairly obvious to us that Mr. Trump’s only hope left in Florida is a low turnout.”
But a new poll from Bloomberg shows Trump leading in Florida with 45 percent while Clinton gets 43 percent. Johnson claims 4 percent while Stein gets 2 percent in this poll. Trump does well in this poll due to Florida voters thinking he can turn the economy around and bring change to Washington. The Bloomberg poll also finds Trump doing well in the Panhandle and with seniors while Clinton does well in South Florida. This poll doesn’t show her running as strong with Hispanics as the other surveys of the Sunshine State.
The SurveyUSA poll of 1,251 likely Florida voters was taken from Oct. 20-Oct. 24 and had a margin of error of +/- 2.8 percent. The FAU poll of 500 likely Florida voters was taken from Oct. 21-Oct. 23 and had a margin of error of +/- 4.3 percent. The Bloomberg poll of 953 likely Florida voters was taken from Oct. 21-Oct. 24 and had a margin of error of +/- 3.2 percent.