One Championship

Polls show Trump narrowing gap with Clinton


Republican Presidential nominee Donald Trump poses for a picture with hotel staff after participating in the ribbon cutting ceremony for the Trump International Hotel in Washington, DC, USA, 26 October 2016. Polls released on 31 October 2016 show Republican Donald Trump gaining ground on Democrat Hillary Clinton eight days before the US presidential election. Photo: Shawn Thew/EPA

Polls released Monday show Republican Donald Trump gaining ground on Democrat Hillary Clinton eight days before the US presidential election.

A contest that increasingly looked to be settled was rocked last Friday by FBI Director James Comey's disclosure of the discovery of a new batch of e-mails possibly pertinent to the investigation of Clinton's use of a private server during her 2009-2013 tenure as secretary of state.

The 650,000 messages were found on a laptop shared by ex-Representative Anthony Weiner and his estranged wife, top Clinton aide Huma Abedin, in the course of a separate probe of the disgraced former congressman.

"I'm sure a lot of you may be asking what this new e-mail story is about, and why in the world the FBI would decide to jump into an election with no evidence of wrongdoing," Clinton said Monday during a rally at Kent State University in the key swing state of Ohio.

"That's a good question," the candidate added.

"They apparently want to look at e-mails of one of my staffers. And by all means, they should look at them," she said. "And I am sure they will reach the same conclusion they did when they looked at my emails for the last year. There is no case here."

In July, Comey held a press conference to say he would urge the Department of Justice not to file charges against Clinton, even as he criticized the former secretary and her aides for having been "extremely careless" in handling classified information.

Trump campaigned Monday in Michigan, another important state, where he sought to capitalize on the latest twist in the Clinton e-mail saga.

"How will Hillary manage this country when she can't even manage her e-mails?," the real estate magnate said in Grand Rapids.

"Hillary is likely to be under investigation for a very long time," Trump told supporters. "She's unfit and unqualified to be the president of the United States, and her election would mire our government and our country in a constitutional crisis that we cannot afford."

"Thank you, Huma! Good job, Huma. Thank you, Anthony Weiner!," Trump said with a heavy dose of irony.

The average of polls tracked by the Web site RealClearPolitics has Clinton leading Trump nationwide by 2.5 points - within the margin of error and down from an advantage of nearly 6 points a week ago.

A third of 1,772 likely voters surveyed over the weekend by Politico and Morning Consult said the news about the revival of the e-mail investigation would make them less likely to vote for Clinton on Nov. 8.

With prominent figures in both parties calling for the rapid release of more information on the new e-mails, the Department of Justice said Monday that it would work closely with the FBI to expedite the review.

Monday also brought a new revelation courtesy of WikiLeaks, which signalled over the weekend that it was poised to "commence phase 3 of our US election coverage."

WikiLeaks, which has spent weeks publishing e-mails of Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta, released on Monday a message sent on March 5 by Donna Brazile, then the deputy head of the Democratic National Committee and a CNN contributor.

In the e-mail, Brazile gives Podesta advance warning about a question that Clinton will face during a March 6 during a debate with Senator Bernie Sanders.

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