A huge survey by Morning Consult shows that the 2016 election is so close that the result is hidden within the error margin of polls in nine states.
Hillary Clinton has a lead in the election, but ”is within the margin of error in nine states: Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Maine, New Mexico, Nevada, North Carolina and Pennsylvania,” said the firm in a Sept. 8 statement about the survey of 18,000 registered voters in all 50 states.
“When those states are removed from the count, the former secretary of State garners 258 electoral votes to the New York businessman’s 164,” according to report. Her score of 258 Electoral Votes is 12 votes short of the 270 votes needed to win the decisive ballot in the Electoral College.
The survey says that the extra two candidates — libertarian Gary Johnson and far-left Green Party candidate Jill Stein — currently benefit Clinton.
A four-way matchup of all the candidates currently stands to benefit Clinton, as she would pick up New Mexico and Iowa and top Donald Trump 332-206 in the Electoral College count. That would be a repeat of President Obama’s 2012 margin of victory over Mitt Romney.
But their participation may help Trump edge past Clinton to snatch wins in several northern states.
The expanded field also weakens her dominance on much of the map and whittles her lead in a number of states which could prove decisive, most notably Florida, Maine, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Ohio and Wisconsin.
That’s the midwest pathway which Trump may open with his populist outreach to working Americans, via his calls for a reform of the nation’s immigration rules that bring in extra labor each year.