Whit Ayres’ comments on President Obama’s appeal and Hillary Clinton’s electoral map in The Canadian Press:
He’ll start using some of that political advantage Tuesday. Obama-Clinton and Trump will hold competing rallies in North Carolina. It’s a state Obama won once, though he lost it in 2012 and still won a big majority in the electoral college.
“If Hillary Clinton can win the same states, then she’s the next president,” said Republican pollster Whit Ayres of North Star Opinion Research, who was the pollster for Sen. Marco Rubio’s presidential campaign.
He said the advantage of using Obama is that he remains wildly popular among Democrats. Obama inspired African-Americans to vote in record numbers, and won the younger demographic that spurned Clinton in the primary. He could also help with white voters — polling data from YouGov suggests nearly one-quarter of those who supported him haven’t yet backed Clinton.
But Ayres said there are drawbacks too.
He said Obama’s presence risks turning off Trump-skeptical Republicans and independents — the kind of persuadable voters who could support Clinton, but shudder at the idea of a third Obama term.
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