It might all come down to Florida

Jamaica Gleaner - - OPINION&COMMENTARY -

ATHE EDI­TOR, Sir: S AMERICANS go to the polls to­day, mil­lions across the world will be breath­lessly an­tic­i­pat­ing the out­come of what might well go down as the strangest, if not the most con­tentious, pres­i­den­tial elec­tion in US mod­ern his­tory.

And they might not have long to wait! While many in the po­lit­i­cal know are pre­dict­ing a close race, there is at least some in­di­ca­tion that the out­come might be known from as early as 8 p.m. East­ern Stan­dard Time, which is about when I am ex­pect­ing the first real big an­nounce­ment from the net­works.

The fact is that de­spite all the noise and back and forth that have been tak­ing place, es­pe­cially in the case of Don­ald Trump, it might all come down to Florida and its 29 elec­toral votes.

It is very dif­fi­cult, some say im­pos­si­ble, to fore­see a Trump vic­tory if he loses Florida. As­sum­ing Hil­lary Clin­ton comes through in all the states that are slightly or solidly lean­ing Demo­cratic, and which cur­rently show her hav­ing 268 of the 270 elec­toral votes needed to win, all she has to do to take the sus­pense out of the game from early is to win Florida. For Trump, though, the math gets a lit­tle stick­ier. It all starts with Florida. If he loses the Sun­shine State, he has to run the ta­ble with other bat­tle­ground states such as North Carolina, Ne­vada, Ari­zona, New Hamp­shire, Colorado, Iowa and Ohio. And if that is not enough, he has to hope for a Hail Mary in at least two of the tra­di­tional blue Demo­cratic states like, say, a Penn­syl­va­nia, Michi­gan, Min­nesota, New Mex­ico or Wis­con­sin.

So, again, it’s as sim­ple as this. Lose the Sun­shine State and it will be a long, lonely night in Trump Tower for Trump. How­ever, for the Clin­ton team, win Florida, and it is game, set and match. And, oh, Madam Pres­i­dent. GARWIN DAVIS natchilusd@ya­ Iron­shore, St James

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