Trump gains on Clinton in latest N.H. polls

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NASHUA, N.H. — Despite recent bad reviews of his debate performance and post debate behavior, Republican presidential candidate Donald J. Trump is gaining on Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton in this critical swing state, putting the two candidates in a virtual dead heat in New Hampshire heading into the final month of campaigning, according to recent polls.

Earlier this week, a Suffolk University poll of likely voters in the Granite State gave Clinton narrow lead of 44 percent to Trump’s 42 percent, the Boston Globe reports. Gary Johnson, who traditionally polls well in the independent-minded state, dropped to 5 percent in this week’s poll.

David Paleologos, director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center credits Trump’s rise in numbers to Johnson’s waning support following his foreign policy errors last month and his inability to meet the threshold needed to join in the presidential debate. Although Trump has never out-polled Clinton in New Hampshire, Clinton’s average lead previously was 6 points. Paleologos predicts the race for the state’s four electoral votes will be “down to the wire” on November 8th.

Suffolk University’s poll also found that among those New Hampshire voters who said they were “alarmed” by the upcoming election, Clinton fared better. However, for those that claimed “excitement” about November, Trump led 69 percent to 28 percent.

Clinton’s waning lead in New Hampshire is of particular significance given the state’s tight U.S. Senate race between incumbent Republican Senator Kelly Ayotte and Democrat Governor Maggie Hassan, one of the most closely-watched political races this election season. According to a poll earlier this week following the senatorial debate between the two candidates, Ayotte led Hassan 47 percent to 41 percent.

Clinton is currently ahead of Trump in nine out of eleven critical swing states. The GOP nominee has maintained his lead in Iowa and Ohio.