In the wake of Friday’s news regarding Hillary Clinton’s infamous emails, the presidential polls between the former secretary of state and Donald Trump have tightened significantly from the previous weeks. Just over a week ago, Trump trailed Clinton by as much as 12 points in the polls. This week, as CNN reports, that number has dropped to an almost statistically insignificant one point.
What a difference a week and an email scandal can make.
However, while the Clinton and Trump polls have tightened, with the ABC News/Washington Post tracker finding that Clinton is in the lead with 46 percent of the vote to Trump’s 45 percent, Donald Trump’s path to the presidency is still an almost impossible dream.
As all Americans know, the outcome of presidential elections is not determined by the popular vote, but rather the electoral college. And even though Trump is right on Clinton’s tail in the polls, he’s lagging way behind on the electoral map — so far behind that it’s highly unlikely that he can possibly scrape together enough electoral votes to secure a victory on November 8.
In order to secure a win in the general election, a candidate (in this case, most likely Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump) will have to collect 270 electoral votes. As of October 31, Hillary Clinton is expected to be awarded 315 electoral votes, putting her well above the number she needs to score a White House victory. Donald Trump on the other hand? The latest predictions show him securing a meager 223, nowhere near what he needs to win.
Throughout the election process, Mr. Trump has consistently questioned the validity of election polls, questioning their accuracy and even calling the presidential election “rigged.” The problem has gotten so bad that Trump even advised his supporters to vote for him twice at a Sunday rally to offset the “election rigging problem.”
At least one Trump supporter apparently took her candidate’s advice, voting twice in the critical swing state of Iowa. Her reason: The election is rigged, and she was afraid her first ballot would end up being counted for Clinton. Terry Rote, 55, became one of the only people to be arrested for attempted election fraud in Iowa in decades when she was caught voting for the second time. After being released on bond, she spoke to the media, admitting that she’d voted twice after a spur-of-the-moment decision.
Trump’s allegations of a rigged election have gotten so pervasive that even President Obama has called him out. In a recent address, Obama told Trump to “stop whining” and to work to legitimately defeat Hillary Clinton in the election rather than claiming he’s been cheated before the votes have even been counted.
Since Friday’s latest edition of the Clinton email scandal made headlines, WSAZ reports that Donald Trump has changed his tune about the polls and elections. Following the news that the FBI may be investigating Clinton one more time, Trump said that the election “might not be as rigged as I thought.”
“I think they are going to right the ship, folks.”
Over the weekend, as news of tightening polls to get a lot of attention, Trump continued to exude confidence that the tide might be turning for his campaign.
However, while Trump is talking about the accuracy and validity of the election polls now that they show him and Hillary Clinton in a dead heat, he is not addressing the elephant in the room — namely, the electoral college maps that all show him trailing way behind.
As UPI reports, even with the distance between Trump and Clinton vanishing in the polls, Donald Trump would have to pull off nothing short of a miracle to get to end up with 270 (or more) electoral votes when all is said and done. While Trump has improved his standing in most battleground states, Secretary Clinton still has a virtually insurmountable electoral lead.
If the election were held today, rather than just over a week from now, regardless of the tightening polls, Hillary Clinton would easily win the electoral vote.
As FiveThirtyEight reports, even with the newly narrow Trump vs. Clinton polls, Donald Trump has to win virtually every swing state to secure a path to the White House. Clinton, on the other hand, has multiple paths to victory on the electoral map, even with the polls tightening as election day looms.
What do you think? Is it possible that Trump can pull off a surprise victory? If Clinton gets the win that most are predicting, will Trump accept the results or continue with his claims of a rigged election? Do you believe that the electoral maps or polls offer a more accurate prediction of the outcome of the Clinton vs. Trump presidential race?
[Featured Image by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images]