A new set of state polls out Sunday morning from CBS News/YouGov adds evidence of some surprising trends in the 2016 race: Arizona looks more like a battleground state than Virginia.
Among likely voters in Arizona, CBS/YouGov finds Republican nominee Donald Trump leading by only 2 points. Incorporating that into the HuffPost Pollster average puts Trump only very slightly ahead ― 45.7 percent to Hillary Clinton’s 45.1 percent.
In Virginia, Trump is 12 points behind the Democratic nominee among likely voters, according to the CBS/YouGov poll. Polls have generally found a consistent and substantial Clinton lead in the Old Dominion state. With this latest one included, the HuffPost Pollster average shows Clinton leading by 5.5 points.
Both states are showing a reversal from trends in the last few presidential election cycles, and that’s not good news for Trump.
Republican nominee Mitt Romney won Arizona by 9 points in 2012, and the race was never close in the state. The last time a Democrat won in the Grand Canyon State was 1996, when Bill Clinton was re-elected. With that exception, Arizona has voted Republican in presidential contests all the way back to 1948.
Virginia, on the other hand, has become a swing state in recent elections. It has voted Democratic in only three presidential elections since 1948, and two of those were 2008 and 2012. President Barack Obama won the state by less than 4 points in his 2012 re-election bid. Polls showed a fairly close race in Virginia during the fall of 2012.
CBS/YouGov also released a Nevada poll showing Clinton up by a narrow 2-point margin among likely voters. That’s not surprising, since the state has been a presidential battleground for more than 20 years. Obama won by a 12-point margin in 2008 and by nearly 7 points in 2012, but prior to that, Nevada’s voters were divided closely between Republican and Democratic candidates.
The HuffPost Pollster average shows Clinton and Trump running a very close race in the state this year, with Trump less than a percentage point ahead.
The CBS News/YouGov battleground state polls were conducted online August 2-5, 2016. The polls include 1,095 likely voters in Arizona, 993 likely voters in Nevada and 1,181 likely voters in Virginia. More information on the methodology and links to the full crosstabs can be found here.
Editor’s note: Donald Trump