Swing-State Poll Suggests Tight Clinton, Trump Race

     (CN) – While a number of pundits have already predicted a matchup between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump would end with the Democrat in the White House, a new “swing state” poll suggests the race would be a lot closer than people think.
     The poll, released by Quinnipiac University on Tuesday, shows Clinton trailing Trump in the perennial battleground state of Ohio, while clinging to the barest of leads in Florida and Pennsylvania.
     In fact, the university found Sen. Bernie Sanders actually performs better in all three state against the presumptive Republican presidential nominee that Clinton does.
     The swing state poll focuses on Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania because since 1960 no candidate has won the presidential race without taking at least two of these three states.
     Presented with the hypothetical matchups, poll participants in Florida had Clinton edging Trump, 43 percent to 42 percent, while Sanders would beat Trump 44 percent to 42 percent.
     In Ohio, the poll says, Trump beats Clinton, 43 percent to 39 percent, while Sanders would prevailed in a matchup with Trump, 43 percent to 41 percent.
     As for Pennsylvania, both Democrats defeat Trump, but Sanders, the poll suggests, would do so more handily.
     The poll gives Clinton 43 percent to Trump’s 42 percent; Sanders, meanwhile, would garner 47 percent of the vote, compared to Trump’s 41 percent.
     “Six months from Election Day, the presidential races between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump in the three most crucial states, Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania, are too close to call,” said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac Poll.
     “At this juncture, Trump is doing better in Pennsylvania than the GOP nominees in 2008 and 2012. And the two candidates are about where their party predecessors were at this point in Ohio and Florida,” Brown said.
     The poll found a huge gender gap in support for Clinton and Trump. The former secretary of state leads Trump by between 7 and 19 points among women, while Trump is tops among men.
     Voters in Florida and Ohio believe Trump would do a better job handling the economy and terrorism, but in Pennsylvania, they’re not so sure.
     One thing voters in all three states appear to agree upon is that Clinton is more intelligent than Trump, and while they also gave Clinton the edge in terms of higher moral standards, the margin between the two was far smaller.
     The poll was conducted by telephone between April 27 and May 8 and reflects the opinions of 3,170 voters a little over 1,000 from each state.
     Researchers found that Republican weakness among minority voters is hampering Trump in Florida. They said the reason the race is so close in the state is because of what they described as ‘Clinton’s historic weakness among white men.”
     In Ohio, the poll found most voters actually oppose Donald Trump’s wall between the United States and Mexico, 52 percent to 45 percent.
     One thing they do support overwhelmingly, according to Quinnipiac is requiring a photo ID for anyone wanting to vote.
     As for Pennsylvania, Tim Malloy, the assistant director of the poll, said both Trump and Clinton “have similar, awful numbers on honesty and favorability.”
     “The one glaring difference: Trump is crushed on the question of which candidate has the temperament and personality to handle an international crisis. It’s a vote of confidence the Clinton camp can dine out on and Trump supporters have to see as a red flag,” Malloy said.

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