Polling place: Clinton's lead shrinking

Polling place: Clinton's lead shrinking

Every Tuesday between now and Nov. 8, we’ll provide an updated snapshot of the race for president, as broken down by the number-crunchers at ELECTION ANALYTICS, a nonpartisan website developed by UI Professor Sheldon Jacobson and his students that analyzes state polling data.

➜ The polls over the past week have moved decisively in favor of Donald Trump, translating into a large upward swing for him in the forecasts. As such, Election Analytics computes Hillary Clinton’s lead in the Electoral College to be 298-240, down from 314-224 just one week ago.

➜ Election Analytics also computes her chance of winning to be 96 percent. This is in contrast to other major forecasters like fivethirtyeight.com, realclearpolitics.com and the New York Times’ Upshot, which has Clinton at a 60 to 70 percent chance of winning.

➜ Why the discrepancy? Delving more deeply into the numbers, if Trump wins all of the primary battleground states — Arizona, Georgia, Florida, Iowa, Ohio, Nevada and North Carolina — plus the 2nd Congressional District in Maine (one of two states, along with Nebraska, that splits its electoral votes by district), that would bring his count up to 266 Electoral College votes. To get to 270, he would need to take at least one secondary battleground state — such as Colorado, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Virginia or Wisconsin — in all of which he is trailing in the polls.

➜ Recent polls suggest Trump may be competitive in Colorado, and possibly New Hampshire. Nonetheless, the combination of winning all — or most of — the primary battleground states and one or two secondary battleground states results in his low, albeit increasing, chance of winning at this time.

➜ With 49 days to go until Election Day, much can still change, particularly with the first presidential debate just six days away.

For more, go to electionanalytics.cs.illinois.edu.

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