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Hillary Clinton’s polling margin over Donald Trump is yuge

Who says?


Aaron Sankin


Posted on Aug 24, 2016   Updated on May 26, 2021, 4:58 am CDT

In recent weeks, 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton has opened up a significant polling lead over her GOP rival Republican nominee Donald Trump. Just how big is this lead?

It’s big. It’s enormous. It’s massive. It’s … umm … there’s another word for it … but … it’s just escaping me right now for some reason.

According to Talking Points Memo‘s Election Scorecard, which averages tracking polls in all 50 states, Clinton holds a 10-point polling advantage or greater in enough states to net her 288 electoral votes—18 more than the 270 needed to secure a spot in the Oval Office.

Clinton is up by 10 percent or more in New Jersey, Hawaii, Colorado, Oregon, Maryland, Washington, Delaware, California, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Virginia, Rhode Island, Illinois, Florida, New York, Maine, New Mexico, Wisconsin, and Washington, D.C.

That means, in order to win, Trump, who only has 154 safe electoral votes in states where he leads by at least a 10-point margin, will have to flip multiple states that Clinton currently holds by a double-digit margin in addition to picking up toss-up states and states that currently lean Clinton by single digits.

Clinton’s edge in electoral votes reveals a race that’s not quite as close as the top-line national polling numbers may suggest. Talking Points Memo’s national tracking poll average has Clinton pulling in 46.7 percent to Trump’s 42.7.

There’s still a lot of election to go—and a quartet of presidential and vice-presidential debates with the potential to dramatically shift the outcome—so anything can happen. However, the X factor here is the start difference between the two candidates’ get-out-the-vote strategies for leading up to and including election day.

Clinton has a massive get-out-the-vote operation—a highly coordinated, high-tech army that will be making phone calls and knocking on doors in a big-dollar effort to bring as many voters to the polls as possible. Trump, on the other hand, has categorically eschewed such organizational pushes, instead asserting that enough of his supporters will make their own ways to the polls to put him over the top. 

“I don’t know that we need to get out the vote,” Trump told Fox News in a recent interview. “I think people that really want to vote, they’re gonna just get up and vote for Trump. And we’re going to make America great again.”

As the Washington Post‘s Philip Bump notes, some of the demographics with which Trump is polling most favorably don’t seem overwhelmingly inclined to get themselves out to the polls in November. A poll conducted by the Post found that only 62 percent of white men without a college degree, one of Trump’s strongest demographics, said they were certain to vote in the 2016 presidential election. 

Ninety percent of college-educated women, one of Trump’s worst demographics, said they were very likely to make it to their polling station.

H/T Josh Marshall

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*First Published: Aug 24, 2016, 5:00 am CDT