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For Clinton, election likely to be won or lost in October

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton spoke in Harrisburg, Pa. on Oct. 4. For Clinton, October is the month when she’s likely to win or lose the election, not the official Election Day on Nov. 8.

WASHINGTON » Each night, Hillary Clinton’s data experts head to a conference room on the 11th floor of her Brooklyn headquarters, to start counting votes.

The sessions in the “early voter boiler room,” as it’s been dubbed by campaign aides, stretch into the early hours of the morning. The team pores over turnout patterns in states where advance voting is already underway, projects how many votes Clinton and Republican Donald Trump have already received, and updates crucial targeting lists of the voters she still needs.

For Clinton, October is when she’s likely to win or lose the election, not Nov. 8. By the third week of this month, Clinton’s campaign hopes to have a solid enough sample of the early vote to know whether the Democrat is on track to win the White House.

“Many battleground states are already voting so every day is Election Day,” said Matt Dover, Clinton’s voter analytics director.

In several competitive states, including North Carolina, Iowa, Colorado, Florida and Nevada, at least 45 percent of the total vote is expected to come in early. Initial metrics show good news for Clinton in North Carolina, a must-win state for Trump. There are modestly positive signs for the Republican in Iowa, but that’s a state the Democrat can likely afford to lose.

The Republican National Committee, which oversees early voting and turnout operations for Trump, is also encouraging supporters to take advantage of opportunities to cast ballots before Nov. 8. The party has significantly stepped up its analytics and voter targeting operations since being outmatched by Democrats in the past two presidential elections, but the 2016 race is the first test of its strength in a national election.

Despite improvements, the RNC system was always intended to be a complement to whatever operations the eventual GOP nominee brought to the table. Trump arrived in the general election with intense enthusiasm among his core supporters but few ways to harness it into trackable voter data.

Unlike Clinton, whose travel schedule is being built around voter registration deadlines and the start of early voting in key states, Trump’s battleground stops haven’t been pegged to those benchmarks. However, there is a noticeably more robust registration effort at Trump rallies and the candidate himself is making explicit early voting appeals to supporters.

“Get those ballots in because the only way this is going to be taken away (is) if we’re foolish or if we let people take it away from us,” Trump said Monday during a rally in Colorado. “I hate to interrupt my speech with these minor details but they’re very important, right?”

Republicans traditionally do well initially with mail-in absentee balloting before Democrats surpass them during in-person early voting. That makes the start of in-person voting a key indicator as to whether core Democratic constituencies, such as young people and non-whites, show up.

“For me, voting early is a matter of convenience, and if I don’t do it I’m unlikely to vote at all,” said Joseph Wozniak, 23, of Macon, Georgia. A recent college graduate who declined to say who he is supporting in the election, Wozniak is working on early vote efforts for the non-partisan organization Democracy Works.

Thirty-seven states allow voting with little restriction before Election Day, either in person or via mail. By the third week in October, 34 of those states will be voting.

Iowa was the first of the battlegrounds to start in-person voting last Thursday. Of the 39,435 people who have cast ballots, 58 percent were Democrats and 25 percent were Republicans — but that was much closer than in 2012.

In North Carolina, buoyed by strong voter interest, Clinton appears to hold an edge with Democratic ballots submitted so far currently leading Republican ones, 40 to 35 percent. At this point in 2012, Republicans had opened a wide lead over Democrats in ballots, due in part to strong support among older whites.

For 2016, Clinton officials pointed in particular to a 13 percent increase in African-American and a 40 percent jump in Latino mail-in ballot requests. To them, it’s a hopeful sign that non-whites and young people will be engaged this election, part of a shift in campaign strategy to more strongly mobilize less reliable, sporadic voters first. Still, the campaign said it will have a much clearer picture once in-person voting begins in the state on Oct. 20.

Similarly in Florida, absentee balloting began only Tuesday, but already more than 2.5 million people — nearly one-third of the total number of votes cast in 2012 — have requested ballots. In-person voting doesn’t begin until Oct. 24, so state Democrats are now strongly urging voters to vote by mail — including in a letter from President Barack Obama paid for by the party.

“In Florida, voting is easier than ever because now you can vote by mail,” he writes. “It’s the fastest and most convenient way to make your voice heard.”

In Obama’s historic 2008 race, he ran up such big early voting advantages in four battlegrounds — Colorado, Florida, Iowa and North Carolina — that his rival, John McCain, couldn’t catch up, despite winning the Election Day vote in those states, according to AP data.

If all goes according to the Clinton campaign’s plan, early ballots soon enough will start to unequivocally point in the same direction.

AP writer Jonathan Lemire contributed to this report.

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  • Mr. Trump is further collapsing in the polls even among (educated) white men. It looks more certain now that the Senate will switch to Democratic control.

    My deepest thanks to everyone who supported Donald Trump. You’ve nominated the most remarkably ignorant and unfit candidate in modern history, and you have virtually guaranteed a Clinton victory.

    Great work! Thanks again!

    • In the meantime Waldo has gone underground again. Could it be another round of “pneumonia”. You know things are getting desperate when she enlists “Weird Al” Gore to go and make her case. And in an example of naked racism and bigotry Clinton officials identify non-whites and young people as less reliable and sporadic. How they get away with such condescending generalities is beyond me. Oh yeah that’s right there are 2 sets of rules. 1 for progressives and one for conservatives.

    • More blood on Crooked Hilliary’s hands. While Dumbo Obama was golfing Secretary of State was running amok. How many Americans, innocent women and children were killed. Thousands.

    • “Look, the average Democrat voter is just plain $tupid. They’re easy to manipulate. That’s the easy part”
      Hillary Clinton, as told to Dick Morris in “Rewriting History”, 2005

      • Sure, that makes sense. Democrats generally are much better educated, have better jobs, and are more healthy. Everyone knows that the smarter someone is, the easier it is to “manipulate” them.

        You always come up with great analyses!

        • Like the UH Wonder Blunder people who handed over taxpayer’s money to con men? They definitely lacked street smarts.

        • Sarcasm is anger’s ugly cousin, very unbecoming. Now imagine this scenario: You are a high school dropout, dope smoking, unemployable, food stamp receiving, deadbeat father with children from multiple women that you do not support. What political party would you identify with?

        • Oops, you failed the quiz just as I knew you would. Why would a deadbeat vote republican? Republicans don’t hand out freebies like democrats. Republicans promote personal responsibility. Republicans aren’t rushing to legalize marijuana. Republicans encourage 2 parent families that stay together. Basically if you can’t or won’t manage your life compassionate democrats will feather your nest courtesy of those who work for a living.

        • CEI – Your facts are all mixed up, but that’s nothing new.

          You are connecting Trump with two parent families that stay together? Trump abandoned his wife and children through serial adultery. And then did it again.

          I’m guessing that you were not the President of your PHD program debating team?

        • Yes klastri, it does have something to do with your comment. The people who were duped into handing over taxpayers dollars were highly educated people. They just lacked the street smarts to realize they were being conned.

      • Anyone who simple-mindedly accepts a braggart’s claim that he is a brilliant, honest businessman—but conceals his tax returns—is easy to manipulate.

        Do you need a translator for that?

      • Anyone who simply accepts a salesman’s claim that he is a brilliant, honest businessman—but conceals his tax returns—is easy to manipulate.

        Do you need a translator for that?

    • Right, Trumpzi fans should have insisted on a higher standard.

      You should have demanded that he show his tax returns.

      You should have told him to shut his beak when he wailed on about the birther theory.

      You should have booed when he let the Mexican president tell him what he could do with his great wall.

      You should have told him to stop getting into ridiculous Twitter wars with women and minorities.

      But you didn’t. And now he thinks he’s the emperor who can do no wrong. All because you blindly agreed with whatever he said week to week, day to day….

      • I’m guessing you would also urge Waldo lemmings to reflect on some demands they should have made:

        You should have told Waldo not to use a private server to conduct official business to include classified information.

        You should have told Waldo not to destroy evidence from her illegal server using Bleachbit.

        You should have told Waldo not to commingle her family foundation with the State Dept. for the purposes of enriching she and Bill.

        You should have told Waldo not to lie about the cause of the Benghazi attack, blaming it on a Youtube video.

        You should have told Waldo not to destroy the lives of the many women her slimy husband man-handled.

        But you didn’t. And now she thinks she’s the emperor who can do no wrong. All because you blindly agreed with whatever she said week to week, day to day…

        • The huuuge difference between Trump voters and Clinton voters is the Clinton voters can accept information they don’t necessarily like, and then they can process it rationally (they can think).

          The private server use was a dumb, careless mistake. That’s exactly what the FBI concluded after a long, thorough investigation. There was nothing crooked going on; there was nothing crooked going on. What crooked thing do you and Trump think was going on? Right, nothing.

          Based on the agreed-upon fact that nothing crooked was going on, I’ll assume she deleted the usual email that people delete: routine correspondence that has nothing in it, personal messages to friends and family, and probably State Dept communication that should be deleted and bleached out. Had there been any “crooked” emails, the FBI would have found it.

          Having any involvement with the Clinton Foundation while being Secretary of State was another careless mistake—but nothing crooked. There was some natural overlap: After working with several Nobel Peace Prize winners as Sect of State, they were so happy, they donated to the Foundation. That’s all good.

          The Clinton Foundation is an A-rated, 100% GOOD charitable organization that saves lives. 88% of donations go to actual use in helping people. Trump, Pence, and any ldiot whose minds they control are LYING when they say only 10% goes to help people.

          Bill and Hillary make ZERO personal income from the Foundation. There is NOTHING bad about the Foundation. Look it up in any normal website, then tell Trump he’s full of it.

          Benghazi happened quickly; there wasn’t enough time to do things perfectly, and unfortunately 4 Americans died. Clinton, as head of the State Dept, took responsibility for the loss—but she didn’t do anything crooked. There were some communication lapses, both before and after the attack. Benghazi was investigated more than Watergate, propelled by Republicans looking to smear the future Democratic presidential candidate. And after all that partisan effort, there was NO conclusive evidence of crookedness by Clinton.

          The great majority of women approve of Hillary’s response to Bill’s infidelities. Only an ldiot would expect her to welcome the “other women” with open arms. She said and did what a strong woman would do, and kept her marriage together. She and Bill raised a good daughter who has grown up to be a fine woman.

          Hillary does not act like an empress who can say or do whatever she wants. She readily accepts input from her aides (unlike Emperor Trump). She eventually admitted to being careless with the emails and that she was wrong for saying “half are deplorable” (unlike Emperor Trump).

          She released nearly 40 years of tax returns, showing that she’s paid millions at a high tax rate. She’s not hiding any “crooked” business deals, and she is paying her share to support the military, families, education, etc. (unlike Emperor Trump).

        • With all the money Clinton makes (because she’s smart), she pays a LOT of taxes and we all know it to be true. Even desperate Trumpsters do not dispute that.

          If she refused to release her tax returns, after earning hundreds of millions (because she’s smart), I WOULD NOT VOTE FOR HER.

          If there is a candidate who makes millions or billions and does not show their tax returns—especially after bragging about how smart and good they are, only a sucker would vote for that person.

          At about this time, you should be asking yourself, “What is Donald hiding? It must be huge, because he tells all kinds of lies to weasel out of showing them. What is he hiding?”

        • sarge22 – Mrs. Clinton is going to be President, and the Senate will be led by Democrats to allow for a smoother path for her SCOTUS nominees.

          Seriously … thanks for supporting Trump! You helped deliver a victory for Mrs. Clinton!

      • Your defense of Waldo nearly brought a tear to my eye. You’re obviously a compassionate Waldo supporter and a true believer. If I were an alien just learning about the human race I’d have a hard time separating Mother Theresa from Waldo based on your post.

      • I gotta’ admit it’s a little bit childish on my part but every time I type “Waldo” I get a good laugh over it. There, ya’ see, I just typed “Waldo” and laughed again. And then I think to myself, how can anybody vote for someone called Waldo? I sure can’t

  • hiLIARy lost the election already when she called Fat Al Sexual Predator Gore to help her campaign seeing that her own Bubba is losing it mentally. Does hiLIARy know of any non-predator men under her tent?

  • Hurricane Sandy was partially to blame for Romney’s loss to Obama. Hurricane Matthew is about to hit several early voting states which no doubt will have a significant negative impact on early voting turnout for many days. After the storm passes, Democrats, of course, will claim the storm disenfranchised many voters and they may even blame Republicans and global warming deniers for it. Don’t be surprised if Democrat politicians like U.S. Senators Charles Schumer of New York and Patrick Leahy of Vermont demand that Election Day be extended for several days.

  • After the first presidential debate and heading into Round 2 on Sunday, Hillary Clinton has taken what appears to be a firm lead over Donald Trump.

    According to the latest NPR Battleground Map, the Democrat once again clears 270 electoral votes, the threshold needed to be president, with just the states leaning in her direction.

    She would win the presidency at this point without any of the tossups, states that could go to either Clinton or Trump. That means Clinton could win without Florida, North Carolina, Nevada and Arizona (the tossups).

    It also means she would win without places that are now leaning toward Trump and were former tossups — Ohio, Iowa and two electoral votes between Nebraska and Maine which, unlike other states, split their electoral votes partially by congressional district. Those happen to all be places where the demographics favor Trump — older, whiter and with a smaller immigrant population.

    Just the polls … Clinton expands to more than 300 electoral votes

    Highlighting how much wider Clinton’s path to the White House is — and how much the country may be at a demographic inflection point — Clinton could win in an electoral landslide with more than 300 electoral votes even without those states now leaning toward Trump.

    Just based on the polls, Clinton’s lead has expanded significantly from last month. It went from 287-251 to 322-216 electoral votes.

    Buahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahah.

    • Not sure if you caught this in The Atlantic today. WOW!

      “Today, our position is similar to the one in which The Atlantic’s editors found themselves in 1964. We are impressed by many of the qualities of the Democratic Party’s nominee for president, even as we are exasperated by others, but we are mainly concerned with the Republican Party’s nominee, Donald J. Trump, who might be the most ostentatiously unqualified major-party candidate in the 227-year history of the American presidency.

      These concerns compel us, for the third time since the magazine’s founding, to endorse a candidate for president. Hillary Rodham Clinton has more than earned, through her service to the country as first lady, as a senator from New York, and as secretary of state, the right to be taken seriously as a White House contender. She has flaws (some legitimately troubling, some exaggerated by her opponents), but she is among the most prepared candidates ever to seek the presidency. We are confident that she understands the role of the United States in the world; we have no doubt that she will apply herself assiduously to the problems confronting this country; and she has demonstrated an aptitude for analysis and hard work.

      Donald Trump, on the other hand, has no record of public service and no qualifications for public office. His affect is that of an infomercial huckster; he traffics in conspiracy theories and racist invective; he is appallingly sexist; he is erratic, secretive, and xenophobic; he expresses admiration for authoritarian rulers, and evinces authoritarian tendencies himself. He is easily goaded, a poor quality for someone seeking control of America’s nuclear arsenal. He is an enemy of fact-based discourse; he is ignorant of, and indifferent to, the Constitution; he appears not to read.”

      “Trump is not a man of ideas. He is a demagogue, a xenophobe, a sexist, a know-nothing, and a liar. He is spectacularly unfit for office, and voters—the statesmen and thinkers of the ballot box—should act in defense of American democracy and elect his opponent.”

      • I have never seen repudiation from such divergent quarters and in such detail and force. Trump is an embarrassment and truly is the emperor without clothes as he seems oblivious to the ubiquitous consternation that is coming from the nation.

        • It’s the establishment as you well know. They are in panic mode to stop Trump and he is still doing rather well. “Make America Great Again”

  • when I read these comments or skip through all news channels, I see everybody saying Hillary leads in all these crucial states by percentage margins, but when I see the crowds in all these same states that Hillary and trump go to campaign, I see bigger crowds at trump rallies than Hillary rallies, so all those polls are all skewed, they don’t mean a thing. so do not go by polls, go by who gets the biggest crowds, trump wins hands down.

  • Wow, the Clingons are restless. Their leader is saying that Democrats are feckless.
    Hillary Clinton called President Obama “incompetent and feckless” and charged that he had “no hand on the tiller half the time” during a boozy reunion with college pals, a new book claims.

    The scathing attacks came as the wine was flowing at a May 2013 dinner at Le Jardin Du Roi, a cozy French bistro near the Clinton family home in Westchester, according to “Blood Feud,” by best-selling author Edward Klein.

  • the female felon will appoint the stain to “revitalize the economy and job creation.”

    the stain will be visiting the strip clubs across america redistributing the wealth one dollar at a time in his quest to support single mothers and creating jobs with a pole.

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