JACKSONVILLE (CBSMiami) — As the election for president comes down to its final few days, candidates are focusing on the sunshine state and its 29 electoral votes up for grabs.
We’ve seen a lot of Donald Trump around South Florida recently. Same thing for Hillary Clinton, including big name surrogates like her husband Bill Clinton, Vice President Joe Biden and even the president himself.
“You can’t swing a dead cat in this state without hitting a surrogate,” said reporter Marc Caputo with Politico Florida.
There’s a very good reason they’re all coming to Florida, especially in these final days.
“It has become the decisive battleground state and so goes Florida, so goes the keys to the White House,” said Political analyst Fernand Amandi. He told us with the polls virtually tied here, winning Florida will determine who wins the presidency. “If Hillary Clinton wins Florida, she will be the next president because there will be no path for Donald Trump, so it’s the state he cannot afford to lose.”
Looking past the polls, Caputo says to watch closely who’s voting early and absentee. At the moment, Republicans are in the lead when the numbers are combined.
“The Democrats seemed to have stopped showing up to in-person early-vote, and the Republicans are really starting to pour it on and cast more absentee votes,” Caputo said.
Despite that Republican lead, University of Miami Professor Joe Uscinski notes the Clinton campaign has a much better ground game to eventually get her voters to the polls, especially in all important South Florida.
By our sheer numbers here, we could determine where Florida’s 29 electoral votes go.
“Miami-Dade and Broward voters are the most important voters in the entire country,” Uscinski said. “Their votes are going to count for a lot. So when they go in for the ballot, they go in knowing that they may be deciding on their own who the president’s going to be.”