Donald Trump polls: Latest election polls show narrowing gap between candidates

Donald Trump polls: Latest election polls show narrowing gap between candidates
Source: AP
Source: AP

One week out from Nov. 8, the polls for the 2016 election continue to deliver varying results. While Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton remains in the lead, according to the most recent averages from RealClearPolitics, her advantage has shrunk somewhat from last week's double-digit margin. As we approach election day, Donald Trump seems to be pulling even, or closer to even, with his opponent. 

But that's to be expected. According to FiveThirtyEight's Nate Silver, the habit of herding, which Silver describes as "the tendency of polling firms to produce results that closely match one another," increases as Election Day nears. The closer we get to the election, the more the gap between candidates appears to narrow.

One tracking poll puts Trump ahead of Clinton

The latest ABC/Washington Post poll released Tuesday gives Trump a one-point edge, a slight shift in the results from the outlets' Sunday poll that showed the Republican candidate closing in on Clinton. 

Monday's numbers give Trump 46% support among likely voters polled, to Clinton's 45%. ABC attributes the Democrat's slide to the recently revived investigation into her private email server, but notes two key takeaways: The first, that enthusiasm for both candidates is waning; and the second, that a one-point difference is within the poll's margin of error. ABC notes that polls conducted this close to the election don't necessarily predict anything, despite Trump's tweets to the contrary. 

Trump may be gaining, but Clinton is still widely expected to win

The ABC/Washington Post poll isn't the only one charting a Trump lead: A USC Dornsife/L.A. Times Presidential Election "Daybreak" poll, released Monday, put the Republican candidate roughly four points ahead of his opponent, with nearly 47% support among participants to Clinton's just-over 43%. 

But the rest of the recent polls rounded up by poll aggregator Real Clear Politics put Clinton in the lead, as does USA Today's election poll tracker, which also gives her a two-point advantage. 

Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton at the second debate — or rap battle — on Oct. 9.
Source: John Locher/AP

According to Silver, polling hasn't drastically shifted despite this latest installment in Clinton's long-running email drama. While polls do reflect a tightening race, that was the case before FBI Director James Comey's Friday announcement that he would be revisiting the issue.

Silver wrote that while Trump might be picking up undecided voters and third-party voters, Clinton's support base isn't losing. FiveThirtyEight's election forecast still has Clinton winning by a substantial margin — her odds at victory, according to the outlet's model, are 74% to Trump's 26%.