U.S. ELECTION WRAP: Clinton Widens Arizona Lead Ahead of Debate

Hillary Clinton continues to grab long-held Republican political territory as a new poll shows her ahead of Republican rival Donald Trump by 5 points in Arizona, up from a lead of less than 2 percentage points in late August.

  • Clinton is backed by 39% of likely voters vs 33.9% for Trump, Arizona Republic/Morrison/Cronkite News survey finds; 20.7% are undecided
    • As Clinton and Trump prepare to face off Wednesday night in their final debate, the latest Bloomberg Politics national poll shows Trump needs to stage a historic comeback to win the White House; the presidential face-off in Las Vegas may be Trump’s last chance to reverse his campaign’s spiral and halt his Democratic opponent’s rising electoral strength, Bloomberg’s Mark Niquette and John McCormick write
  • Trump campaign manager Kellyanne Conway says she’s not worried
    • “I don’t feel sorry for us,” she told CNN Tuesday. “I just think we’re going to win this because people love a comeback story”
  • Meanwhile, with less than three weeks until Election Day, electoral map projections are in flux
  • CNN on Wednesday moved long-time GOP strongholds of Arizona and Utah into the “battleground” column (Arizona had been “lean Republican”, Utah “solid Republican”)
    • The Utah shift is due in part to third-party independent candidate Evan McMullin rising in several polls, CNN said
    • Florida and Nevada, previously viewed as too close to predict, are now “lean Democrat”: CNN
  • If the election were held today, Clinton would get 307 of the 270 electoral votes needed to win the presidency vs 179 for Trump, according to CNN analysis
  • Trump “has to have his best debate ever tonight,” veteran GOP debate coach Brett O’Donnell told the TV network
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