Clinton up by 12 points over Trump in ABC News tracking poll

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CeFaan Kim has the latest details.

Hillary Clinton has vaulted to a double-digit lead in the inaugural ABC News 2016 election tracking poll, boosted by broad disapproval of Donald Trump on two controversial issues: His treatment of women and his reluctance to endorse the election's legitimacy.

Likely voters by a vast 69-24 percent disapprove of Trump's response to questions about his treatment of women. After a series of allegations of past sexual misconduct, the poll finds that some women who'd initially given him the benefit of the doubt have since moved away.

Fifty-nine percent of likely voters, moreover, reject Trump's suggestion that the election is rigged in Clinton's favor, and more, 65 percent, disapprove of his refusal to say whether he'd accept a Clinton victory as legitimate. Most strongly disapprove, a relatively rare result.

All told, Clinton leads Trump by 12 percentage points among likely voters, 50 to 38 percent, in the national survey, her highest support and his lowest to date in ABC News and ABC News/Washington Post polls. Gary Johnson has 5 percent support, Jill Stein 2 percent.

The results mark a dramatic shift from Clinton's +4 points in the last ABC/Post poll Oct. 13. That survey was conducted after disclosure of an 11-year-old videotape in which Trump crudely described his sexual advances toward women, but before the events that have followed: A series of women saying he sexually assaulted them, which Trump has denied; his continued refusal to say whether he'd accept the election's legitimacy; and the final debate, which likely voters by 52-29 percent say Clinton won.

This inaugural 2016 ABC News tracking poll, produced for ABC by Langer Research Associates, was conducted Thursday through Saturday among 1,391 adults, including 874 likely voters. This is the first in what will be daily ABC News tracking poll reports from now to Election Day. The Washington Post will join ABC's tracking survey later this week.

The previous ABC/Post poll found a sharp 12-point decline in enthusiasm for Trump among his supporters, almost exclusively among those who'd preferred a different GOP nominee. Intended participation now has followed: The share of registered Republicans who are likely to vote is down 7 points since mid-October.
Vote preference results among some groups also are striking. Among them:

Clinton leads Trump by 20 percentage points among women, 55-35 percent. She's gained 12 points (and Trump's lost 16) from mid-October among non-college-educated white women, some of whom initially seemed to rally to Trump after disclosure of the videotape.

Clinton has doubled her lead to 32 points, 62-30 percent, among college-educated white women, a group that's particularly critical of his response to questions about his sexual conduct. (Seventy-six percent disapprove, 67 percent strongly.)
That said, Clinton's also ahead numerically (albeit not significantly) among men, 44-41 percent, a first in ABC News and ABC/Post polling.

Trump is just +4 among whites overall, 47-43 percent, a group Mitt Romney won by 20 points in 2012. Broad success among whites is critical for any Republican candidate; nonwhites, a reliably Democratic group, favor Clinton by 54 points, 68-14 percent.

Trump's campaign bluntly acknowledged Sunday that the real estate mogul is trailing Clinton as the presidential race hurtles toward a close, but insisted he still has a viable path to win the White House.

With barely two weeks left and early voting underway in most of the U.S., Trump's team said "the race is not over" and pledged to keep campaigning hard - even in states like Virginia and Pennsylvania that polls show are now trending Clinton's way. Campaign manager Kellyanne Conway laid out a path to the requisite 270 electoral votes that goes through make-or-break states Florida, Iowa, North Carolina and Ohio.

"We are behind. She has some advantages," Conway said Sunday. Yet she argued that Clinton's advantages - like a slew of bold-name Democrats campaigning for her - belied her lack of true support. "The current president and first lady, vice president, all are much more popular than she can hope to be."

Added Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus: "We expect to win."

Yet even as Clinton appeared to be strengthening her lead, her campaign was careful not to declare premature victory.

"We don't want to get ahead of our skis here," said Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook. He said the "battleground states" where both candidates are campaigning hardest "are called that for a reason."

As part of his closing message, Trump was laying out an ambitious agenda for his first 100 days as president. Yet he undermined his own attempt to strike a high-minded tone on policy issues when he announced in the same speech that he planned to sue the numerous women who have accused him of groping and other unwanted sexual behavior.

"All of these liars will be sued once the election is over," Trump said Saturday during an event near the Civil War battlefield of Gettysburg. He added: "I look so forward to doing that."

Asked about Trump's remarks, Clinton told reporters between rallies Saturday in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia that she was done responding to what her Republican opponent is saying as Election Day nears and would instead focus on helping elect other Democrats.

A day earlier, Clinton attacked Pennsylvania's Republican senator, Pat Toomey, saying in Pittsburgh that he has refused to "stand up" to Trump as she praised his Democratic challenger, Katie McGinty. Noting Trump's comments about Mexican immigrants and his attacks on a Muslim-American military family, she said of Toomey: "If he doesn't have the courage to stand up to Donald Trump after all of this, then can you be sure that he will stand up for you when it counts?"

Clinton rejected Trump's allegation, offered without evidence, that the dozen or so women who have come forward are being prompted by her campaign or the Democratic National Committee. The accusers emerged after the former reality TV star boasted of kissing women and groping their genitals without their consent.

"These accusations are not coming from our campaign," Mook said.

On Saturday, an adult film actress said the billionaire kissed her and two other women on the lips "without asking for permission" when they met him after a golf tournament in 2006. Trump has denied that all the other allegations, while insisting some of the women weren't attractive enough for him to want to pursue.

"He's been waterboarded by these issues," said former Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer, a Trump supporter, lamenting the "oppression" of her candidate in the media.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)
Related Topics:
politicshillary clintondonald trumppolitics2016 election
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