Donald Trump now leads Hillary Clinton in three of the five most recent polls, as catalogued by Real Clear Politics, and when averaged out, he has a narrow 0.2 percent lead over the former secretary of state.
The polls showing Trump with a lead are:
- Rasmussen Reports, which has him ahead by five;
- Fox News, which has Trump ahead by three, and for the first time, gives Clinton higher negatives;
- ABC News/Washington Post puts Trump ahead of Clinton, 46-44 percent.
A CBS/New York Times poll puts Clinton at 47 percent, and Trump at 41 percent.
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With his recent surge, Trump is now ahead of Clinton in the average of polls for the first time since Real Clear Politics first started documenting them when the two entered last year.
As recently as March 25, when Trump was still battling Texas senator Ted Cruz and Ohio governor John Kasich in the GOP primaries, Clinton was leading the real estate developer and former reality TV star, 50 percent to 38.8 percent. Her lead over Trump in the average of polls was at its highest last July 2, when Clinton led him by nearly 20 points, 53.3 to 33.7 percent. So as of right now, Trump clearly has the momentum.
But Can Trump's Lead Last?
Trump has to know that he can't rest easy, however, as the election is still more than five months away, and that is a very long time in politics.
In addition, there are reasons why the Trump campaign should not rest easy.
First, Trump has cleared the field of all of the competition in his party. After the Indiana primary a few weeks ago, both Cruz and Kasich dropped out. But even though Clinton is now very close to clinching the Democratic nomination, Vermont senator Bernie Sanders is still in the race, and he's still winning contests -- including last Tuesday, May 17, when he won the Oregon primary, and narrowly missed winning the Kentucky primary as well.
In addition, the Democrats were in the media crosshairs when their Nevada state primary was highlighted by boos from Sanders supporters for what they perceived as unfair treatment and Sanders' ongoing feud with Democratic National Committee chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, as The Inquisitr reported.
Trump very likely benefited from these intra-Democratic Party skirmishes. But once Clinton seals the nomination, this should affect her standing in the polls.
Trump: Hated by his own party?
Trump also has a potential money problem. The New York Times is reporting that, after interviewing more than 50 of the GOP's largest donors, they discovered "a measure of contempt and distrust toward their own party's nominee that is unheard of in modern presidential politics."
More than a dozen of them do not plan to contribute this election cycle; this group gave "a combined $90 million to conservative candidates and causes in the last three federal elections."
Trump also appears to be ignoring one of the reasons Barack Obama defeated Mitt Romney in 2012: Obama's team targeted their ads on cable TV, placing ads on The Food Network and Lifetime -- channels popular with many women, according to The Huffington Post. Meanwhile, Romney "relied on a more traditional mass saturation of broadcast TV" and "was entirely dark on cable TV for two of the campaign's last seven days."
Trump, however, called Obama's much-praised ad targeting, as well as its extensive data network, "overrated," as reported by Politico.
Finally, these poll numbers do not take into account how the candidates are doing in individual states. This is important because presidential elections are decided by the electoral college.
With this in mind, The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Donald Trump's campaign "doesn't have any general-election staff" in Ohio, which is a must-win state for him in November.
What do you think? Can Donald Trump maintain his lead over Hillary Clinton?
[Photo by Mel Evans/AP Images]