New polls out this week matching the two presumptive presidential nominees, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, could spell danger for the Democrat even as she appears to be pulling away from Trump in the nationwide head-to-head matchup. Polling from crucial swing states that had previously been controlled by Clinton now appears to be heading back in the direction of the Republican candidate.
What that means for the general election is that, even though Clinton appears to be consolidating her support among voters across the United States, the Electoral College, where the next president will actually be chosen, has started to look more welcoming to Trump.
Specifically, races in Florida and Pennsylvania have tightened, according to new polls, making those states with their 29 and 20 electoral votes respectively now appear winnable for Trump, putting the total of 270 electoral votes needed to secure the presidency closer to his grasp.
In the Electoral College each state is “winner take all.”
The Electoral College count has continued to favor Clinton, as the latest tabulation from ABC News found. But if Clinton loses in key “swing” states — that is, states in which polling is too close to make a reliable prediction of a November 8 winner — she could find that lead reversed, and Donald Trump headed for the White House.
The following video from Fox News explains a new poll taken by the conservative network, a poll showing Hillary Clinton expanding her nationwide lead over Donald Trump.
A new Public Policy poll issued on Wednesday showed the Pennsylvania race a dead heat at 44 percent each for Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, with 12 percent either unsure or supporting a minor-party candidate.
In Florida, the same polling firm found Trump ticking up to a one-point lead, 45-44, with 11 percent in the “other” category.
The new Pennsylvania result dropped Clinton’s polling average lead in Pennsylvania to just 3.8 percent, according to the election-tracking site Election Graphs. That put the state into the “weak” category for Clinton, now giving her six states in which she holds an average lead over Trump of under five percentage points.
According to Election Graphs, if Trump can overcome Clinton’s slim lead in all six of those states — Pennsylvania, Florida, Ohio, Nevada, North Carolina, and Iowa — he wins 294 electoral votes, as long as he also wins all states in which he now leads in the polling averages.
In other words, he could actually win only five of the six “weak” Clinton states and still win the presidency, as long as he wins Florida. If Trump loses Florida but wins the other five states listed above — and wins the states where he now leads in the polls — Clinton ekes out a narrow victory with 273 electoral votes.
However, none of the state polls reflect any “bounce” for Clinton that may have resulted from her victories in four of six primaries on Tuesday — victories that put her over the top in delegate count to make her the first woman in the 240-year history of the United States to become the presumptive presidential nominee of a major political party.
On Thursday, President Barack Obama endorsed Clinton, which is also likely to give her a boost in polling.
MORE ELECTION COVERAGE FROM THE INQUISITR:
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- Hillary Clinton Tops Donald Trump In Electoral College, Forecasters Agree
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- Donald Trump — President? Relax. Here’s Why Trump (Almost) Definitely Won’t Beat Clinton Or Sanders
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But in the nationwide, head-to-head matchup, Clinton is already starting to open up space between herself and Trump.
Less than one month ago, on May 16 — as Donald Trump was enjoying his own nationwide polling bump from becoming the presumptive nominee of the Republican Party — Clinton’s lead in the Huffington Post/Pollster average was a mere 1.5 percentage points.
But as of June 8, Hillary Clinton had raced to a 5.6 point lead over Donald Trump in all polls compiled into the Pollster average, with 44.8 percent to 39.2 for Trump.
[Featured Photos By Joe Raedle / J.D. Cooley / Getty Images]