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Roanoke College Poll Shows Big Lead for One Presidential Candidate in Virginia

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Roanoke College
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The most recent poll out of Roanoke College is checking in with how Virginians are feeling about the upcoming presidential election - and the results are significantly different from the last poll, conducted in May. 

The results show some good news for Democratic Presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. Dr. Harry Wilson, head of the Institute for Policy and Opinion Research at Roanoke College explains.

“We found Hillary Clinton with a 16 point lead over Donald Trump; very large lead. Our most recent poll three months ago had them tied, so this is a big change from then.”

Despite Clinton's significant lead, she still has something in common with Republican nominee Donald Trump.

“We’re dealing still with two very unpopular candidates, but one of them has been able to improve their numbers to some extent, that would be Clinton, and the other candidate is really pretty much where they were three months ago, and that would be Trump.”

Since the Institute’s last poll in May, both candidates picked their running mates. Wilson does not believe that was a primary factor for the jump Clinton saw over her opponent, although Clinton’s pick of Virginia Senator Tim Kaine was certainly beneficial.

“The conventional wisdom still is that at the end of the day people vote for the top of ticket and they don’t really vote for the Vice Presidential candidate, but again I should reiterate certainly that having someone from Virginia on the ballot does not hurt in Virginia.”

The poll’s results were largely negative for Donald Trump, but Wilson thinks Republicans within the state will eventually rally behind their candidate.

“I would expect this race to tighten over the next couple of months. I would expect that a lot of those Republicans who I said right now are not supporting Trump; they’re not saying they are going to vote for Clinton. Some of them are undecided. Some of them are saying they are going to vote for Gary Johnson the Libertarian. I would expect a significant number of those, I can’t say how many, but I would expect some of those in a sense to come back home.”

There will be at least one more poll from the Institute leading up to Election Day.

 

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