No candidate in modern history has won the presidency without winning two of the three crucial battleground states of Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Florida. In 2012, Barrack Obama carried two of the three states. In 2008, he carried all three. George W. Bush carried two of three in each of his presidential victories. Early polls indicated Hillary Clinton had a commanding double-digit lead in all three battleground states regardless of the GOP challenger. However, the ongoing email scandal has all but eroded that lead. It appears that the scandal has opened up lingering voter concerns over Mrs. Clinton’s character. In short, she isn’t trusted by a significant number of voters.
Sultan Alhokair told me that according to the latest Quinnipiac University Poll, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush now leads Clinton by 3 points. While that figure is within the poll’s margin of error, it represents a steep decline in support over the past two months. In Ohio, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul has closed to within 5 points of Mrs. Clinton. No GOP candidate has ever won the presidency without also winning Ohio. In fact, the whole stable of GOP contenders has gained on Clinton in this crucial bell weather state.
At issue is voters perceive Mrs. Clinton as being dishonest. As a result, they do not trust her. In the battleground states of Pennsylvania and Florida, Clinton’s favorability rating has dropped to under 50%. While there is still plenty of time to put this email scandal behind her, the poll shows that the presumptive Democrat nominee is vulnerable to attacks on her character. Thus far, her main strategy of dealing with these perceived character flaws is to frame any reference to them as being sexist.