Political Notes — Trump’s Georgia lead down to 1 point in Q-poll

[private]Donald Trump held a one-point lead over Hillary Clinton, 44-43 percent, in the latest Quinnipiac poll of Georgia voters; Libertarian Gary Johnson had 8 percent support.

That represented a narrowing of the race in Georgia since the last Q-poll on Sept. 22 that had Trump leading by 47-40 percent.

The Quinnipiac polls released Thursday also had Trump and Clinton tied 44-44 percent in Iowa, another battleground state in the presidential election.

“Time is running out and Donald Trump has lost his leads and now is tied with Hillary Clinton in Iowa and Georgia,” said Peter A. Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll. “North Carolina appears to be moving in her direction also.”

Breaking down the poll numbers, Clinton leads 48–42 percent among early voters in Georgia.  Likely voters have negative opinions of both candidates, with Clinton at a negative 40–55 percent favorability rating and Trump at a negative 38–55 percent.

Men back Trump by 49–39 percent while women support Clinton by 47–39 percent. White voters back Trump by 65–23 percent while non-white voters support Clinton by 77–9 percent.

Independent voters went 40 percent for Clinton, 38 percent for Trump and 15 percent for Johnson.

Perdue isn’t buying it

One person who still contends that Georgia isn’t a battleground state is Republican Sen. David Perdue, who told CNBC:

“We’ve had four terms of Republican governors here. There are 10 of 14 congressional districts here that are Republican. Every constitutional office in this state is Republican. We have two Republican senators. There’s no evidence that this state is a battleground state.”

Early votes surpass one million

Early ballots in Georgia have crossed the one million mark, with Secretary of State Brian Kemp reporting:  1,054,959 total ballots, of which 938,195 are advance in-person ballots and 116,764 are mailed-in absentee ballots.

So far, the number of early votes is running about 7 percent higher than the 2012 total for the same period.

Breakthrough in the statehouses?

Lou Cannon reports for RealClearPolitics that Democrats may regain some of the ground they’ve lost over the last few election cycles in state legislatures:

“There’s a danger the dike could break for Republicans,” says Tim Storey, who analyzes politics for the National Conference of State Legislatures. He found that there has been a sea change in expectations on both sides since Oct. 7 when The Washington Post reported on the existence of the “Access Hollywood” recording in which Trump crudely described making unwanted advances on women. Republicans have become increasingly concerned that they could lose statehouse majorities in as many as 10 states, Storey said. . . .

Even before the Trump implosion, 2016 loomed as an opportunity year for Democrats, in part because Republicans may have gone a bridge too far in the 2014 midterm elections when they won several marginal districts to boost their numbers to the highest level since the 1920s.

If history is a guide, Democratic legislative candidates stand to gain from a Clinton victory. In the half-century since the Supreme Court mandated legislative redistricting on the basis of one-person, one-vote, the party winning the White House has gained an average of 129 state legislative seats.

Democrats need a strong showing in state races to offset heavy losses during President Obama’s tenure, when Republican legislative candidates won a net of 816 seats. The GOP now controls 67 of 98 partisan legislative chambers. Republicans have a majority in both chambers in 30 states; Democrats control both in only 12, with control split in seven states. (Nebraska has a unicameral, non-partisan chamber.) Republicans have 31 governors, the Democrats 18. Alaska’s governor is an independent.

© 2016 by The Georgia Report

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Tags: battleground states , Brian Kemp , David Perdue , early voting , Georgia poll , legislative control