Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton has regained momentum in the critical swing state of Florida, but is continuing to lose ground to Republican rival Donald Trump in several close-run small states.
A special poll of “toss-up” states conducted by CNN found that Mrs Clinton has edged ahead of Mr Trump in Florida, with a lead of 49 per cent to 47 per cent.
The CNN survey was taken between October 27 and November 1, which coincided with the public fallout from the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s decision to reopen a criminal probe into Mrs Clinton’s use of a private email server when she was secretary of state.
It is a potentially significant poll because it is unlikely that Mr Trump can win the presidency without claiming Florida.
Mrs Clinton’s path to the White House remains feasible without carrying Florida because Mr Trump is still struggling to make up ground in delegate-rich states such as Pennsylvania, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
Moreover, the latest polls in two traditional Republican states – Virginia and North Carolina – indicate voters are continuing to lean Mrs Clinton’s way.
While the likelihood of a fresh FBI investigation appears to be having little impact on Mrs Clinton’s prospects in Florida, she has suffered a sharp fall in support in smaller battleground states such as Nevada and Arizona.
According to the CNN poll, Mr Trump now enjoys a commanding six percentage point lead in Nevada, with 49 per cent of respondents indicating they would vote for him at the November 8 election.
Throughout September and October, most polls showed Mrs Clinton ahead in Nevada.
Mr Trump has also consolidated his lead in the tight battle for delegates in Arizona and now leads by four percentage points in that state.
The findings of the CNN poll might be significant because they suggest that momentum in the presidential election is shifting in key battleground states, but with mixed implications for each of the candidates.
Media outlets stoke warped campaign
The 2016 race for the White House will no doubt be recorded as one of the weirdest and divisive campaigns in US political history.
While much of its divisiveness can be attributed to each of the candidate’s talents for polarising public opinion, the election has also highlighted deep rifts between media outlets on what is actually happening in the campaign.
According to several conservative media outlets, the political contest took yet another sensational twist on Thursday after Fox News political anchor Bret Baier reported that the FBI was “likely” to indict Mrs Clinton on matters relating to a charity known as the Clinton Foundation.
Citing unnamed FBI sources, Mr Baier alleged that the agency last year reopened an investigation into the foundation that was abandoned in 2005.
Mr Baier’s report claimed that agents working in the FBI’s white collar crime and anti-corruption units had uncovered “an avalanche of evidence” since the new investigation was launched 12 months ago.
Although a string of conservative news providers such as the Washington Times and the Breitbart News Network jumped on the “bombshell”, other influential media outlets like CNN, the New York Times, the Boston Globe and the Los Angeles Times steered clear of it.
Watch Baier make his claims here:
Breaking news on the Hillary Clinton email investigation
Posted by Bret Baier on 2016年11月2日
In fact, the Boston and LA newspapers each led their political coverage on Thursday with stories that underlined how Mr Trump faced an uphill battle to win next week’s election.