Most Important County in Florida Sees 'Unprecedented' Last-Minute Surge in Hispanic Voters

With Florida a must-win for Donald Trump to have any hope of winning the election, the county the Trump campaign has targeted as crucial to securing the state saw an "unprecedented surge" of Hispanics in last-minute voter registration.

According to analysts' models, including those run by the Trump campaign, Miami-Dade county is the most important of all counties in Florida for Trump's chances of winning the state. His campaign believes the county, which is 56 percent Hispanic, contains many persuadable voters who might turn the tide for the Republican. The question both camps have been asking is how strong voter turnout would be and, of course, who would voters end up backing.

Bloomberg notes that the question on voter turnout has been answered emphatically, the county seeing strong early voting numbers and an "unprecedented surge" in last-minute voter registration, particularly among Hispanics.

"It’s been just massive," said University of Florida political scientist Daniel A. Smith, reports Bloomberg.

As for who that "surge" of voters are supporting, Bloomberg points to numbers from Smith's early voting analysis that don't look good for Trump:

There are 1.5 million registered voters in Miami-Dade county (56 percent of whom are Hispanic), including nearly 30,000 added during a last-minute voter-registration drive in October, after Democratic Party officials went to court to extend the deadline in the wake of Hurricane Matthew. Through Saturday, according to Smith, 707,844 county residents had already voted: 44 percent were Democrats, 30 percent Republican, and 25 percent had “no party affiliation," a group that tends to skew younger and Hispanic, and thus toward Clinton. The demographic mix of early voters also looks highly favorable to Clinton: 58 percent Hispanic, 17 percent African-American and 20 percent white.

But the late registrants, Smith says, give the clearest indication that sentiment in Miami-Dade is running strongly against Trump. Of the 29,657 voters who registered last month, 41 percent are Democrats, 44 percent are unaffiliated, and only 12.5 percent are Republicans. “That’s nuts,” said Smith. “These are the barometers that indicate the hostility toward the GOP candidate.”

"It will be close," said Trump's digital director Brad Parscale of the Florida vote. "It’s like predicting your wife’s mood. You have no idea what you’re going to get until you get home."

Trump goes into election day with a razor-thin 0.2% lead over Clinton in Florida. Should he lose the state, he has virtually no path to the presidency. If he wins, he has a hHere are all the final presidential election polls.

Read Bloomberg's complete analysis of Miami-Dade County here.


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