Polls Show Trump With Slight Lead Over Clinton Going Into First Debate

Donald Trump
September 26, 2016

A collection of polls released Monday have Donald Trump with a slight lead over Hillary Clinton heading into the first presidential debate.

Trump has closed the gap in both state and national surveys following Clinton’s previously strong lead after the Democratic convention in July.

The Republican nominee is virtually tied with his Democratic challenger in the key swing states of Pennsylvania and Colorado, according to new CNN/ORC polls. Pennsylvania has consistently been cited as the Clinton campaign’s "firewall" state to keep her above the 270 electoral votes needed to win.

Clinton maintains a narrow one-point lead in Pennsylvania, while Trump is ahead in Colorado, Politico reported.

Clinton tops the field in a four-way matchup in Pennsylvania with 45 percent support to Trump’s 44 percent. Libertarian nominee Gary Johnson follows with 6 percent support, while Green Party nominee Jill Stein sits at 3 percent, among likely voters.

In Colorado, it’s Trump who leads the field, with 42 percent support, followed by Clinton at 41 percent, Johnson at 13 percent and Stein at 3 percent.

A new Bloomberg poll published Monday also shows a close race between Trump and Clinton. The survey has Trump up by 2 percent against Clinton with 43 percent to her 41 percent in a four-way race with Johnson and Stein included. In a head-to-head match up, the poll has Clinton and Trump tied at 46 percent.

These numbers show how drastically Clinton’s lead from this summer has evaporated, Bloomberg noted.

Clinton had a 6-point advantage on Trump in the two-way race in August and a 4-point advantage when third-party candidates Gary Johnson and Jill Stein were included. She had a 12-point edge on Trump in June, when Johnson was also included.

The Democrat had a 26-point lead among female likely voters in June, when she was tested against both Trump and Johnson. She has a 13-point advantage in this poll when measured only against Trump, getting 52 percent to his 39 percent–similar to her 15-point advantage in August.

The release of these new polls has led Nate Silver’s FiveThirtyEight blog to increase Trump’s chances of winning the presidency to 48.5 percent. The Republican nominee has seen his chances skyrocket with several tight polls leading up to the debate. Silver’s forecast showed Trump at his lowest point with only a 10.8 percent chance of winning on Aug. 14.

Trump and Clinton will face off for the first time on the debate stage Monday night in what is anticipated to be one of the most watched debates of all time.