Posted by: maboulette | October 18, 2016

Hillary Clinton & Donald Trump Are Close in Texas


new-clinton

Twenty years after the last Democrat won state-wide in Texas, Republicans actually could lose their grip on my home state of Texas.

It’s been 2 decades since the last time a Democrat came close to winning Texas, but if a new 50-state survey that was released Monday by The Washington Post can be believed, Hillary Clinton has a narrow lead over Donald Trump.

This poll conducted by Survey Monkey, the data included 74,000 respondents and used internet rather that live phone calls to contact potential voters just before the Labor Day weekend. While many were quick to dismiss the survey findings, based on collection methodologies, there may well be a bona fide political opening for Democrats—if not now, in cycles to come—and Trump may have unwittingly handed them the keys.

Should GOP lose their grip on Texas, it would prove catastrophic for them nationally with influences likely to spread over generations.

At issue: Supreme Court and federal judicial nominations, a U.S. Senate majority and, by extension, immigration policy and voting rights.

For the Republican nominee, winning the Lone Star State should be  easy. However, the survey shows “an unprecedented deficit” for Trump “among college-educated white voters” and that he is “struggling in places Republicans have won consistently.” Explicitly, Trump may have to fight battles thought to be already won in deep red states, in the South and Southwest— like Arizona, Georgia and, yes, Texas.

As other polls have demonstrated, Arizona and Georgia may also be in question. Several noteworthy GOP leaders from both states, including Sens. John McCain and Johnny Isakson, have proffered lukewarm endorsements to the party nominee. But, Texas may prove a harder—and some say impossible—nut to crack.

In 2012, Mitt Romney won Texas by 16 points, beating Barack Obama by more than 1.2 million votes. Today, a combination of seismic demographic shifts among non-white voters and his own lackluster campaign infrastructure may be the reasons for Trump’s weak showing there. Furthermore, his tense relationships with Texas state party leaders—including primary opponent Sen. Ted Cruz—likely created wounds that won’t soon heal.

One simply cannot question the sanity of a candidate’s wife or accuse his father of being in league with a presidential assassin and then later expect his full-throated endorsement.

Perhaps more tellingly, even before state-by-state polling started in earnest, when asked about which states might be in in play, Clinton pointed south to Texas.

“If black and Latino voters come out and vote, we could win Texas,” the former Secretary of State explained in an interview with New York Magazine.

The real problem is this: For Democrats, even with Trump’s characteristic weaknesses, a real move into Texas is far too costly at this point. Anything spent in Texas cannot be spent anywhere else— including the 13 more conventional battleground states.  But Clinton has moved some money into the state to run television ads.

 

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