Clinton Builds on Leads |in Virginia, New Mexico

     (CN) – A sampling of polls released since Friday shows Democrat Hillary Clinton building substantial leads over Republican challenger Donald Trump in Virginia and New Mexico, and an increasingly comfortable edge in New Jersey.
     According to the latest Albuquerque Journal poll, released Sunday, Clinton enjoys a 10-point lead against Trump in a head-to-head matchup, and a holds a 4-point lead when Libertarian Gary Johnson and the Green Party’s Jill Stein are factored into the race.
     Not surprisingly, Johnson was a two-term governor in New Mexico, is doing quite well in the newspaper’s survey. Over all, he has the support of 42 percent of Independents, 23 percent of Republicans and 20 percent of Democrats. He also draws the support of 25 percent of men and 24 percent of women.
     “The bottom line is that New Mexico is more competitive than I expected,” said Brian Sanderoff, president of Research & Polling Inc., which conducted the survey.
     Sanderoff said Johnson’s presence in the race is hurting Clinton more than Trump, mainly due to the strong support the Libertarian has among Hispanics (31 percent), a group that traditionally votes heavily in favor of Democrats in the state.
     That said, Clinton holds a commanding lead over Trump when it comes to Hispanics in the state, 40 percent of whom said they will vote for Clinton, while only 18 percent say they will support Trump.
     Sanderoff said the poll also suggests that anti-Trump Republicans are moving to Johnson, not to Clinton. Only 3 percent of Republicans polls in New Mexico said they will vote for the Democrat, while 9 percent of Democrats said they will vote for Trump.
     Twenty percent of Democrats said they will vote for Johnson, while 23 percent of Republicans said they will support the former New Mexico governor.
     Among Independent voters (or those who declined to state a party affiliation), John led all candidates in the four-way field, pulling in 42 percent, while Clinton polled at 26 percent, Trump at 14 percent, and Stein at 6 percent.
     Meanwhile, Clinton’s lead in Virginia has edged up since the first presidential debate, and she now leads trump, 42 percent to 35 percent.
     The new Wason Center for Public Policy poll finds that Clinton’s support among Millennials has increased by 7 points, while Trump’s support among this demographic has remain unchanged. Independents significantly shifted support to Clinton from Trump and Johnson following the Sept. 27 debate, the poll found.
     The other big shift in Virginia was among military households. In September, Trump enjoyed a 7 percent lead among this group. Now Clinton is just one point behind the Republican, 37 percent to 36 percent.
     The real bad news for Trump in Virginia is a significant drop in his support among Republicans. While 73 percent of the GOP-affiliated said they still plan to vote for the billionaire real estate mogul, that’s down 5 percent from a poll in September.
     Clinton, meanwhile, has gained a point with voters in her base and now boasts the support of 88 percent of Democrats.
     In other news, a Stockton Poll finds Clinton leading Trump in New Jersey, 46 percent to 40 percent. Ten percent of survey participants said they will vote for a third-party candidate, a write-in, or “nobody,” with 4 percent either undecided or refusing to identify their choice.
     “New Jersey is a blue state, so it’s not surprising Clinton is ahead,” said Sharon Schulman, executive director of the Hughes Center, which carried out the poll. “But there are still 14 percent who are undecided or not choosing either Clinton or Trump at this point.”
     Men split 41 percent to 40 percent for Clinton over Trump, but women favor Clinton over Trump. 48 percent to 34 percent. Whites favor Trump, 45 percent to 38 percent, over Clinton; Black voters favor Clinton 83 percent to 8 percent for Trump.
     The vote is closer among Hispanics, who favor Clinton by 20 points, 53 percent to 33 percent for Trump.
     One of the more interesting storylines right now is in Nevada, a battleground state where Clinton and Trump are in a statistical tie, 45 percent of those in a poll commissioned by the Las Vegas Review-Journal saying they support Clinton while 44 percent support Trump.
     Five percent said they support Gary Johnson, while 5 percent are undecided and 1 percent said they would support someone else.
     Nationally, the latest Rasmussen Reports poll shows Clinton leading the four-candidate field by 3 points, while the daily LA Times/USC Tracking poll has Trump up nationally by 5 points.

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