The modest lead Clinton has held in national and state polls can be attributed to her outsized advantage among white women with college degrees. Four years ago, Romney carried this demographic over President Obama, 52 percent to 46 percent, according to exit polls. Yet Trump is losing it badly — 32 percent to Clinton’s 57 percent in a late September Washington Post-ABC News poll of likely voters.
Among white women without college degrees, however, Trump leads Clinton 52 percent to 40 percent. The two candidates are virtually tied among white women overall: 46 percent for Clinton and 44 percent for Trump, according to the Post-ABC survey.
For Clinton, who would make history as the nation’s first female president, winning a larger share of white women voters than Obama did could help her offset any relative erosion in support from young voters, for instance. It also could balance any rise in turnout among white men for Trump, a group with which he enjoys an over 2-to-1 lead.