The Best Evidence That Hillary Clinton Has an Edge in Florida

Latinos in the key battleground state could make the difference.

Eric Gay/AP

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.

Florida is a crucial swing state with razor-tight margins—according to FiveThirtyEight, it’s the state most likely to tip the presidential election. In 2012, President Barack Obama won the state by just 74,000 votes out of more than 8 million cast. On Friday, new polling in Florida offers evidence that Hillary Clinton may have an edge against Donald Trump. The key is Hispanic voters.

According to the exit polls, Obama won 60 percent of Florida’s Hispanic voters while Republican Mitt Romney won 39 percent. In polling released Friday by Latino Decisions, a firm that focuses on the Latino community, Clinton’s lead is 14 points larger than Obama’s margin of victory; she’s beating Trump 62 percent to 27 percent. Florida’s Latinos, who make up about 15 percent of the state’s registered voters, are generally more conservative than the national Latino electorate, largely due to the sizeable and conservative-leaning Cuban population.

Given that the poll was conducted just before Trump’s hardline immigration speech in Arizona on August 31, it’s possible Trump’s numbers could slide further among Florida Latinos, Gabe Sanchez, a pollster with Latino Decisions, told reporters on a conference call Friday.

If Clinton can significantly outperform Obama among Latinos in Florida, that could give her a key edge in what is looking to be a tight—and critical—race in the Sunshine State.


Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

payment methods

We Recommend