The Party Crasher predicts Clinton will win the Electoral College vote 322-215, capturing virtually all of the swing states, as President Barack Obama did in his 2012 victory. Reports of Trump closing the gap at the end are reminiscent of past elections where the polling margins tightened in the closing days, only to widen back out at the end—including 2012, which was also what followers of the stock market would recognize as a “dead cat bounce.”
Early voting reports in Florida and Nevada indicate impressive Latino turnout thus far, and The Party Crasher, consequently, expects both states to tip into Clinton’s column, cutting off any path to victory for Trump. There is no realistic scenario by which Trump can lose Florida’s 29 electoral votes and compile the 270 electors necessary to win the election.
While the Real Clear Politics polling average in Florida shows Clinton ahead by only 1 percent as of Sunday—essentially a statistical tie—a Republican poll conducted by Remington Research was the only poll in the last five that showed Trump ahead, and the four-point margin in the Remington poll significantly skewed the average. (As a rule, The Party Crasher ignores any polling conducted by partisan pollsters, also scrupulously disregarding any polls that are conducted on behalf of Democrats.) All the remaining polls included in the RCP average since October 27 show Clinton with a slight but steady lead in the Sunshine State.
Additionally, estimates cited by The Washington Post on Nov. 5 indicate that the Latino vote in Florida may be up in excess of 150 percent over the same time period in 2012. At this point, based on the available information, this columnist feels exceedingly confident that Clinton will capture Florida.
In Nevada, the state’s leading political analyst, Jon Ralston, has been reporting for days a surge in Democratic early voting generally and Latino votes specifically. Numerous news reports back up Ralston’s reporting. While a recent CNN poll gave Trump a shocking six-point lead in Nevada (certainly an outlier as compared to other recent polling), The Party Crasher learned years ago not to bet against Ralston—nearly a lone voice in predicting Democratic Sen. Harry Reid’s 2010 reelection—in the Casino State.
North Carolina is another state where Clinton has led most recent polling but now trails in the RCP average because of one very large outlier (a WRAL-TV/SurveyUSA poll showing Trump up seven points) and two Republican pollsters (Trafalgar Group, Remington) shockingly showing the Republican candidate ahead. These are the only three polls, out of the last 10 in the RCP listings, showing Trump ahead in the Tar Heel state. The Party Crasher expects Clinton to prevail narrowly in North Carolina, picking up 15 electoral votes that President Barack Obama failed to get in 2012.
This columnist also expects Clinton to win the Rust Belt states where Trump has frantically attempted to expand the map: Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin. Clinton has been ahead in all recent polling in these three states and they do not appear to be in doubt, despite Clinton’s decision to campaign abundantly in Pennsylvania and Michigan. (Neither of those states have early voting, so getting out the vote on Election Day is crucial, and nothing more should be read into her visits to those states.)
That is not to say that Trump won’t gain ground in the Rust Belt. The Party Crasher predicts that Trump will carry onetime bellwether Ohio’s 18 electoral votes. Despite a Columbus Dispatch poll showing Clinton moving narrowly ahead, Trump’s overall polling leads and troubling early voting numbers for Team Blue in key Democratic counties—particularly Cleveland’s Cuyahoga County—point to a Trump win.
The other clear bright spot for Trump in the Midwest is Iowa. It appears very clear now that Trump will flip the Hawkeye State, with its six electors, into the Republican column for only the second time in the last eight elections and the first time since 2004.
But this columnist sees no other states besides Ohio and Iowa flipping from blue to red this election, and their defections from the Democratic fold will be partly offset by North Carolina going blue for only the second time since 1976. Clinton remains well ahead in Virginia polling, and while Colorado is now close, it is crucial to note that Democrats have consistently overperformed their polling in statewide races in the Centennial State in the last three election cycles (2010, 2012, 2014).
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