Predicting elections is always trick business. Most polls currently have Clinton ahead by several points. A recent poll from Bloomberg has Clinton beating Trump 49% to 37%, but polls are only one way to gauge how an election might go. Frontloading HQ’s election forecast takes into account poll numbers, past elections and recent voting trends to try and predict how the general election might go. According to them it could go very badly for the GOP. They predict Clinton will gain 358 electoral college votes compared to Trump’s 180.
Frontloading HQ points out that the 2016 race is turning out to be similar to 2008 which could bode well for the Democratic Party. One thing that is important to keep in mind is that it is still fairly early in the race and there aren’t very many polls available at the state level. There have been several national polls, but in terms of predicting how individual states will go, state-level polls are sometimes more useful. However, it’s important to keep in mind that most of the state-level polls we do have have been conducted in states that have been competitive in recent elections.
Looking at the map we can see that Clinton wins in several swing states including Florida, Pennsylvania and Ohio. Colorado and Nevada are split with Nevada going Republican and Colorado going to the Democrats. Both of these states have voted with the winner of the presidential election in the last four elections. However, both are rather difficult to gauge as there have been few polls for either state and as 538 points out Nevada is always a difficult one to predict.
‘For starters, when it comes to surveying public opinion, Nevada is still very much the Wild West, and pollsters may be unwilling to gamble their reputations on the state: Nevada is among the hardest places to poll in the nation, with a spotty track record to prove it. Going into the 2008 Republican caucuses, the polling average gave Mitt Romney just a 5-point advantage over John McCain; Romney ended up winning by 38 points. In 2010 when Republican Sharron Angle challenged Harry Reid, then Senate majority leader, for his seat, the polling average showed her beating the incumbent by a 3-point margin; she lost to Reid by nearly 6 points.’
As the example of Nevada shows, it is important to remember that polls are hardly a guarantee and we have a limited number of them, but the ones we do have do no not bode well for Trump. For example, Kansas hasn’t gone blue since 1964 when John F. Kennedy was running against Barry Goldwater. Despite this history, a recent poll shows that Kansas voters prefer Clinton to Trump by 7 points and Kansas isn’t the only GOP stronghold that is wary of Trump.
A recent Georgia poll has the GOP nominee ahead by only four points. Micheal Tomasky, of the Daily Beast, says part of this can be attributed to the infighting that is happening among Georgia’s Republican Party as well as Clinton’s strong support among minority voters.
‘ I spoke Tuesday with a Democratic operative in the state who was spinning me to some extent, sure, but who sounded pretty bullish as he described the state GOP’s internal divisions and the fact that about 40 percent of the electorate is going to be non-white. That 40 percent is mostly African American, and Clinton’s going to win 85 or 90 percent of that 40 percent, so do the math—she’d need less than 30 percent of the white vote to win the state’
Keep in mind these are only predictions and should be taken with a grain of salt, but right now the numbers do not look good for Trump.