clinton

More Republicans expect Clinton, rather than Trump

More Republicans now think Democrat Hillary Clinton, rather than Donald Trump, will win the presidency, as their party’s candidate struggles with difficulties including allegations of sexual misconduct and his suggestion he may not honour the outcome of the election.

A Reuters/Ipsos poll released on Wednesday and conducted from Oct. 20 to Oct. 24 found that 41 percent of Republicans expected Clinton to win the Nov. 8 election, versus 40 percent who picked Trump.

That reflected a sharp decline in confidence from last month, when 58 percent of Republicans said they thought their party’s nominee would win, versus 23 percent who expected Clinton to prevail.

Among Trump’s supporters, 49 percent in the latest poll said they believed Trump would win, down from 67 percent who felt that way at the beginning of the month.

“There’s still hope, I guess. I just don’t have a great deal of faith in a good portion of the American public,” said Bert Horsley, 38, of Belgrade, Montana, who said he planned to vote for Trump even though he believed Clinton would win.

Horsley said he felt the country was leaning increasingly socialist and that voters were more inclined to focus on Trump’s problems than on issues facing Clinton, including allegations she mishandled classified emails while secretary of state.

“The nation’s willing to overlook certain things in some people and not in others,” he said.

Despite the growing pessimism, Trump, who trails Clinton in national opinion polls, still enjoys overwhelming support from members of his party. Some 79 percent of likely Republican voters said they would vote for him. Many said their support was rooted in an expectation he would promote a conservative agenda in Congress and appoint conservative justices to the Supreme Court.

Democrats appear to be strongly anticipating a Clinton presidency. Some 83 percent of Democrats said in the poll they thought she would win, while only 8 percent predicted Trump would become president. Among Clinton’s supporters, 92 percent expected her to win, up from 83 percent a month earlier.

Clinton held a commanding lead in the race to win the Electoral College and claim the presidency, according to results from the Reuters/Ipsos States of the Nation project released on Saturday.

CONFIDENCE DROP THIS MONTH

Trump, a businessman and former reality television star, has alarmed mainstream Republicans throughout his campaign by routinely bashing the political establishment and making a series of provocative statements.

He aroused criticism for belittling the parents of a U.S. soldier killed in the Iraq war, calling for a ban on admitting Muslims to the country and accusing a judge of bias because of his Hispanic heritage. He has also asserted, without showing evidence, that the U.S. electoral system is rigged.

But Republicans remained mostly confident in their candidate’s chances until this month, when a videotape from 2005 was released in which Trump could be heard bragging in vulgar terms about kissing and groping women.

At least 10 women have since accused Trump of making unwanted sexual advances, including groping or kissing, from the early 1980s to 2007, according to reports in various news outlets. Trump has denied the women’s allegations, calling them “totally and absolutely false” and has promised to sue the women after the election.

Trump has also deepened divisions within his party by refusing to promise to accept the outcome of the election. “I will keep you in suspense,” he said when asked about the issue during an Oct. 19 debate with Clinton.

The Reuters/Ipsos poll was conducted online in English with American adults in all 50 states. The latest poll included 648 people who identified as Republicans and 771 people who identified as Democrats. It had a credibility interval, a measure of accuracy, of 4 percentage points.

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Clinton widens lead in latest poll as Trump cries foul

Hillary Clinton has widened her lead over Donald Trump nationally and in key swing states three weeks before Election Day, a poll showed on Monday (Oct 17), as the Republican presidential nominee struggled to find a way back into the race.

Trump, whose campaign has been reeling in the face of lewd comments about women and accusations of sexual assault, has doubled down on claims of “large scale voter fraud” in the US election, despite denials from within his own party.

And his team has deployed his wife Melania in a media blitz to try to tamp down the furore over the allegations, with interviews set to air late Monday on CNN and early Tuesday on Fox News.

“Those words, they were offensive to me and they were inappropriate. And he apologised to me. And I accept his apology. And we are moving on,” Trump told Fox, in an excerpt released by the network.

The Republican nominee takes the stage Wednesday with his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton in their final debate before voters make their choice on Nov 8.

Clinton leads Trump by 12 points – 50 per cent to 38 per cent – among likely voters nationwide, in a four-way contest with third-party candidates, a poll by Monmouth University showed. Among registered voters, her lead is 11 points.

Meanwhile, a survey from Quinnipiac University showed Clinton leading in several key battleground states – Colorado, Florida and Pennsylvania – and even with Trump in Ohio.

A CNN poll puts Trump ahead by four points in Ohio, but gives Clinton a slight lead in North Carolina and Nevada.

Her leads in key states corresponds to her advantage of 6.4 percentage points in an average of recent national polls given by RealClearPolitics.

The polls indicate that the allegations swirling around Trump have taken their toll. Monmouth University found that six in 10 voters believe he made unwanted sexual advances towards women – claims he vehemently denies.

Trump, who was headed to Wisconsin for a rally, is scheduled to hold two events on Tuesday in Colorado.

‘SEE WHAT HAPPENS’

After the first debate, Trump said he would respect the election result. But he backtracked in an interview with The New York Times last month, saying, “We’re going to see what happens.”

And since then, he has unleashed a litany of complaints about the nation’s election system, and also blamed the media for his woes, raising concerns about possible unrest should he lose.

“Of course there is large scale voter fraud happening on and before election day,” Trump wrote on Twitter, without offering corroborating evidence. “Why do Republican leaders deny what is going on? So naive!”

Trump’s running mate Mike Pence sought to ease tensions, insisting his camp would accept defeat if voters reject the Republican ticket at the polls. “We will absolutely accept the results of the election,” he told CBS on Sunday.

Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted, a Republican who oversees election operations in his state, insisted Monday that Trump was being “irresponsible” for warning of voter fraud. “If there is a systemic problem, please identify it. Don’t just make an allegation on Twitter. Tell me,” Husted said on CNN.

For Clinton’s campaign manager Robby Mook, Trump is “desperately trying to shift attention from his own disastrous campaign.” “He knows he’s losing and he’s trying to blame that on the system. This is what losers do,” Mook said during a press call on Monday.

STOLEN?

But Trump’s warnings may be having an impact. A new poll by Politico and Morning Consult reveals that some 41 per cent of voters believe the election could be “stolen” from Trump through massive voter fraud.

More than seven in 10 Republicans believe the election could be taken from them, while 17 per cent of Democrats agree with the potential for serious ballot box fraud.

The poll of 1,999 registered voters was conducted on Oct 13-15.

The nation’s top elected Republican, House Speaker Paul Ryan, who has declared that he would no longer “defend” the party’s nominee, rebuked Trump over his comments questioning the validity of the election process.

Ryan is “fully confident the states will carry out this election with integrity,” his spokeswoman AshLee Strong said.

CLINTON LOW-KEY BEFORE DEBATE

Clinton is lying low ahead of the final debate, apparently relying on Trump self-destructing.

“She is trying to avoid issues for the next 22 days in the hopes that this will just end up being about Mr Trump,” his campaign manager Kellyanne Conway told CNN on Monday outside of Trump Tower in New York.

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