Hillary Clinton has the lead over Donald Trump in the pivotal swing state of Florida thanks in part to growing optimism about the economy and support from Hispanics, a new poll shows.
Florida Atlantic University (FAU) brought out a new poll on Thursday which has Clinton out front in Florida with 49 percent with Trump taking 43 percent. Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson pulls 1 percent while Green Party candidate Jill Stein takes less than one half of 1 percent.
Both Clinton and Trump are upside down in the poll. Clinton is seen as favorable by 44 percent while 47 percent see her unfavorably. A majority of those surveyed--54 percent--see Trump as unfavorable while 41 percent see him favorably.
The economy is helping Clinton, the poll shows as 54 percent say they are better off today than a year ago while 46 percent think they’re worse off. Looking ahead a year from now, 71 percent say they expect to be better off than they are now while 29 percent think they will be worse off.
Clinton takes 77 percent of those who say they are better off now than they were a year ago while 70 percent of those who say they are worse off support Trump.
“The voter’s perception of their personal finances and the economic outlook for the country is driving this election,” insisted Monica Escaleras, the director of FAU’s Business and Economics Polling Initiative (BEPI), on Thursday.
Clinton takes 51 percent of females and 46 percent of males. Trump has the support of 45 percent of males and 42 percent of females. Clinton’s ahead in South and Central Florida while Trump is ahead in the northern part of the state.
The poll finds Clinton takes 92 percent of Democrats while Trump rounds up 80 percent of Republicans. Trump is ahead with voters outside the major parties, taking 45 percent while Clinton gets 36 percent of these voters.
Kevin Wagner, who teaches political science at FAU, said Trump needs to turn things around in Florida if he wants to win the White House.
“Mr. Trump continues to trail sharply among women and minorities and those numbers point to a loss in Florida barring a significant late improvement,” Wagner said. “Conventional wisdom in this state is that central Florida is the bellwether area. Our numbers are showing Mrs. Clinton ahead in that region by over 20 points. That should raise concerns in the Trump campaign.”
FAU also took a poll of Florida Hispanics which was released on Thursday. Clinton gets 52 percent of these voters while 33 percent favor Trump, 4 percent back Johnson and 1 percent are for Stein.
Clinton is trading water with Florida Hispanics as 45 percent see her favorably while 44 percent see her as unfavorable. Trump is upside down with these voters as 61 percent view him unfavorably while 31 percent see him as favorable.
The poll of 400 likely voters in Florida was taken from Oct. 5-9 and had a margin of error of +/- 4.9 percent. The separate poll of 400 Florida Hispanic voters had the same dates and margin of error.