Speed Reads

The final 2016 presidential debate

Hillary Clinton heads into debate with solid 9-point lead over Donald Trump

Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are meeting together on stage for the last time this election Wednesday night, and Trump is heading into the final debate with a significant deficit in the polls. In a Bloomberg Politics poll released Wednesday morning, Clinton has opened up a 9-point lead over Trump among likely voters, 50 percent to 41 percent in a two-way race, or 47 percent to 38 percent in a four-way contest including Gary Johnson (8 percent) and Jill Stein (3 percent). In the last Bloomberg Politics poll in September, Clinton and Trump were tied at 46 percent apiece.

"This poll shows movement toward Clinton with all the right groups it takes to win — including men and those without a college degree," says pollster J. Ann Selzer, who conducted the poll. "Their alignment with Clinton is a formidable change in the algebra." In the new poll, Clinton is beating Trump among men in a two-way race, 46 percent to 44 percent, and among voters with no college education, 48 percent to 44 percent, and she has a 17-point lead among female voters and a 1-point lead among white women.

"The race sure looks like it's a solid Clinton win, but Trump has a few advantages in enthusiasm and support," Selzer added, pointing to the sole bright spot for Trump. Trump's favorability rating is -25, while Clinton's is -5, and 52 percent majority of voters say they view Trump very unfavorably. The poll was conducted Oct. 14-17 among 1,006 likely voters and has a margin of error of ±3.1 percentage points.

A Fox News poll released Tuesday night was slightly better for Trump — he is trailing Clinton by just 6 points among likely voters, 45 percent to 39 percent in a four-way race (or 49 percent to 42 percent in a two-way race). That's a rise of 1 point for Trump from the last survey, Brett Baier noted on Tuesday night, but on the state level, "our latest electoral scorecard does not paint a pretty picture for Donald Trump, with the understanding, of course, that there is time for this map to change." Watch. Peter Weber