NEW YORK — A second poll from the Tar Heel state in as many days confirms that Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump is leading his Democrat Hillary Clinton.
This poll, from The Trafalgar Group (TFG), shows Trump up by about five percent over Clinton—specifically, a lead of 4.97 percent—outside the survey’s 2.88 percent margin of error. Trump, at 49.13 percent, leads Clinton at 44.16 percent. Libertarian Gary Johnson gets 3.59 percent and the Green Party’s Dr. Jill Stein gets 0.49 percent, while 2.63 percent are undecided. The survey was conducted from Oct. 27 through Nov. 1, with a sample size of 1,154 likely voters. That means the poll was partially conducted before FBI director James Comey announced he was reopening the criminal investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email scandal.
Pollster Robert Cahaly, TFG’s senior strategist, said that he thinks there is a Brexit-like undercurrent of Trump support in key battleground states.
“It’s our belief that there is a significant ‘Brexit’ type undercurrent of support for Trump that many polls are not capturing,” Cahaly said. “We have been asking a second ballot test question to measure who survey takers believe most their neighbors will vote for. In our Ohio, Florida, and this North Carolina survey we find a consistent pattern of Clinton support dropping 5-6% while Trump support increases 4.5-5.5% for this question.”
“We believe the most accurate measure of support for each candidate is somewhere between how people answer for themselves and answer on behalf of their neighbors,” Cahaly added.
“Lastly we have noted that there will likely be a major influx of participation from registered voters who haven’t voted since 2006 or before,” Cahaly also said. “This mobilization is reminiscent to the Obama turnout of 2008. These voters’ primary motivation is the rejection of the establishment, just as the Obama ’08 voters who rejected the establishment of that time.”
Trump does even better than the original numbers when respondents are asked whom they think their neighbor supports. In that question, Trump gets 54 percent even—and Clinton drops to just 39.88 percent.
This is the second survey in as many days that has shown Trump breaking through in North Carolina into the lead. The WRAL/SurveyUSA poll out on Tuesday showed Trump over 50 percent for the first time in North Carolina, leading Clinton by seven points—well outside the margin of error. That survey had Trump up 51 percent to Clinton’s 44 percent.
This all comes as early voting numbers suggest that Clinton is in serious trouble in the Tar Heel state, as the black community is not coming out to vote for her like they did for President Barack Obama in 2012 and 2008. Republican Mitt Romney won North Carolina in 2012, but even Obama is admitting now that black turnout in the state is way down. Obama is making two trips to North Carolina for Clinton in the final week of the campaign, and the Clinton campaign has strategically made the state its Waterloo as it’s bringing out the heaviest firepower it has there.
North Carolina has 15 electoral votes, and if Trump can lock those in, along with Florida’s 29 electoral votes—as well as the states he already seems to have in Nevada, Ohio, and Iowa—he will be, along with the red states, at around 265 electoral votes, just shy of the 270 mark. Trump is trending upward in polls in Michigan, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Wisconsin and more in the final hours of a tumultuous campaign as Clinton finds herself under dueling FBI investigations. The FBI has reopened the criminal investigation into Clinton’s illicit home-brew email server she set up in violation of State Department guidelines, and has been—as was confirmed by a bevy of reports on Wednesday evening—investigating the Clinton Foundation for over a year now.