The Blackburn Report

The Truth As I See It

Will Trump Escape Justice In Child Rape Case?

Many people are saying that the reason trump began his eccentric run at the Presidency is that he thought it could save him from prison after his rape of a 13-year-old child in 1994.He was also aware that many of his sexual assault victims would come forth as  well.

Trump is certainly an individual with, at best, anger issues regarding young women, and at worst, a serial rapist.

Trump has escaped Justice so far, but it appears his past may finally catch up with him.



An anonymous “Jane Doe” filed a federal lawsuit against GOP presumptive nominee Donald Trump last week, accusing him of raping her in 1994 when she was thirteen years old. The mainstream media ignored the filing.

If the Bill Cosby case has taught us anything, it is to not disregard rape cases against famous men. Serious journalists have publicly apologized for turning a blind eye to the Cosby accusers for over a decade, notwithstanding the large number of women who had come forward with credible claims. And now history is repeating itself.

In covering a story, a media outlet is not finding guilt. It is simply reporting the news that a lawsuit has been filed against Mr. Trump, and ideally putting the complaint in context. Unproven allegations are just that – unproven, and should be identified that way. (Mr. Trump’s lawyer says the charges are “categorically untrue, completely fabricated and politically motivated.”) Proof comes later, at trial. But the November election will come well before any trial. And while Mr. Trump is presumed innocent, we are permitted – no, we are obligated — to analyze the case’s viability now

No outsider can say whether Mr. Trump is innocent or guilty of these new rape charges. But we can look at his record, analyze the court filings here, and make a determination as to credibility – whether the allegations are believable enough for us to take them seriously and investigate them, keeping in mind his denial and reporting new facts as they develop.

I have done that. And the answer is a clear “yes.” These allegations are credible. They ought not be ignored. Mainstream media, I’m looking at you.

1. Consider the Context: Mr. Trump’s Overt, Even Proud Misogyny

The rape case must be viewed through the lens of Mr. Trump’s current, longstanding and well documented contempt for women. Men who objectify women are more likely to become perpetrators of sexual violence, just as one with a long history of overtly racist comments is more likely to commit a hate crime.

Mr. Trump has relished calling women “dogs,” “slobs” and “pigs,” and cyberstalked and derided journalist Megyn Kelly for having the temerity to ask him to defend his own words. He threw out the most misogynist of attacks, attempting to undermine her professionalism by accusing her of menstruating. He’s cruelly ridiculed the appearance of a female opponent (Carly Fiorina) and an opponent’s wife (Heidi Cruz). His campaign even openly acknowledged that it disqualified all women for consideration as his vice-president.

Mr. Trump has a long history of debasing women he’s worked with, crossing the line on a regular basis. He’s taken lifelong joy in objectifying women, including his proclamation: “Women, you have to treat ‘em like shit.”

This cannot be ignored. Decades of abusive language does not make him a rapist. But it does show us who the man is: a callous, meanspirited misogynist who no sane person would leave alone with her daughter. As Dr. Maya Angelou said, “When someone shows you who they really are, believe them.”

2. More context: two prior sexual assault court claims have been made against Mr. Trump

But Mr. Trump has been accused of worse than just misogynist language. Two prior women have accused Mr. Trump, in court documents, of actual or attempted sexual assault. (Mr. Trump denies all the allegations.)

Under oath, Ivana Trump accused Mr. Trump of a violent rape.

First was Ivana Trump, Donald Trump’s first wife, who said under oath in a 1989 deposition that he had violently attacked her, ripped out her hair and forcibly penetrated her without her consent. According to the Daily Beast, she claims he was wildly angry that she’d referred him to a cosmetic surgeon who had botched a “scalp reduction” job (to cover a bald spot) and caused pain in his scalp – hence the vindictive yanking on her hair. At the time Ms. Trump said she felt “violated” by the alleged “rape.”

A few years later, after their divorce was settled, Ms. Trump claimed that she did not mean the word “rape” in a “literal or criminal” sense.

Note: virtually every settlement of a case involving a high profile person paying money to a former spouse – or anyone – requires the person receiving the money to agree in writing to ironclad nondisparagement and confidentiality. In plain English: you promise to be quiet and not say anything bad about the party paying you money. This has been the case in hundreds of settlement agreements I have worked on over the years. Ms. Trump was almost certainly contractually prohibited after she signed from saying anything negative about Mr. Trump. And it is also common to attempt to “cure” prior negative statements with new agreed-to language – like, I didn’t mean it literally. (You didn’t mean forcible penetration literally?)

A business acquaintance accused Mr. Trump of sexual harassment and “attempted rape”.

A second woman accused Donald Trump of sexual assault, in 1997. According to The Guardian, then thirty-four year old Jill Harth alleged in a federal lawsuit that Trump violated her “physical and mental integrity” when he touched her intimately without consent after her husband went into business with him, leaving her “emotionally devastated [and] distraught.” The lawsuit called the multiple acts “attempted rape.” Shortly thereafter she voluntarily withdrew the case when a parallel suit against Mr. Trump brought by her husband was settled. When The Guardian reached the woman in 2016 to ask whether she stood by her sexual assault allegations, she responded, “yes.”

In a court filing, according to a report, Ms. Harth alleged that while she and her husband were trying to do a business deal with Mr. Trump regarding a beauty pageant, he repeatedly propositioned her for sex and groped her, culminating in this frightening alleged incident:

Trump forcefully removed (Harth) from public areas of Mar-A-Lago in Florida and forced (her) into a bedroom belonging to defendant’s daughter Ivanka, wherein (Trump) forcibly kissed, fondled, and restrained (her) from leaving, against (her) will and despite her protests.” In the court document, she said that Trump bragged that he ”would be the best lover you ever have.”

Recently Donald Trump issued a statement that women’s claims of sexual harassment, documented in a lengthy New York Times investigation which included Ms. Harth’s lawsuit, were “made up.”

Jill Harth responded angrily on Twitter last week: “My part was true. I didn’t talk. As usual you opened your big mouth.”

In other words, she is standing by her story.

3. The new Jane Doe child rape claim against Mr. Trump is consistent with verifiable facts about Mr. Trump and his friend Jeffrey Epstein, and has a powerful witness statement attached to it.

A third woman accused Mr. Trump of rape very recently. According to the Daily Mail, a woman filed an April 2016 lawsuit claiming that when she was thirteen years old she was held as a sex slave to Mr. Trump and his friend Jeffrey Epstein. The woman claimed to have a witness, “Tiffany Doe,” to the incidents. She filed the case in pro per, that is, without the assistance of a lawyer.

The case was dismissed by the court for technical filing errors. She then obtained a lawyer and the case was modified and refiled in New York federal court, against Mr. Trump and Mr. Epstein.

I’ve carefully reviewed this federal complaint. It is now much stronger than the one she filed on her own, which makes sense because she now has an experienced litigator representing her. Jane Doe says that as a thirteen year old, she was enticed to attend parties at the home of Jeffrey Epstein with the promise of money modeling jobs. Mr. Epstein is a notorious “billionaire pedophile” who is now a Level 3 registered sex offender – the most dangerous kind, “a threat to public safety” — after being convicted of misconduct with another underage girl.

Jane Doe says that Mr. Trump “initiated sexual contact” with her on four occasions in 1994. Since she was thirteen at the time, consent is not an issue. If Mr. Trump had any type sexual contact with her in 1994, it was a crime.

On the fourth incident, she says Mr. Trump tied her to a bed and forcibly raped her, in a “savage sexual attack,” while she pleaded with him to stop. She says Mr. Trump violently struck her in the face. She says that afterward, if she ever revealed what he had done, Mr. Trump threatened that she and her family would be “physically harmed if not killed.” She says she has been in fear of him ever since.

New York’s five year statute of limitations on this claim – the legal deadline for filing — has long since run. However, Jane Doe’s attorney, Thomas Meagher, argues in his court filing that because she was threatened by Mr. Trump, she has been under duress all this time, and therefore she should be permitted additional time to come forward. Legally, this is calling “tolling” – stopping the clock, allowing more time to file the case. As a result, the complaint alleges, Jane Doe did not have “freedom of will to institute suit earlier in time.” He cites two New York cases which I have read and which do support tolling

Two unusual documents are attached to Jane Doe’s complaints – sworn declarations attesting to the facts. The first is from Jane Doe herself, telling her horrific story, including the allegation that Jeffrey Epstein also raped her and threatened her into silence, and this stunner:

Defendant Epstein then attempted to strike me about the head with his closed fists while he angrily screamed at me that he, Defendant Epstein, should have been the one who took my virginity, not Defendant Trump . . .

And this one:

Defendant Trump stated that I shouldn’t ever say anything if I didn’t want to disappear like Maria, a 12-year-old female that was forced to be involved in the third incident with Defendant Trump and that I had not seen since that third incident, and that he was capable of having my whole family killed.

The second declaration is even more astonishing, because it is signed by “Tiffany Doe”, Mr. Epstein’s “party planner” from 1991-2000. Tiffany Doe says that her duties were “to get attractive adolescent women to attend these parties.” (Adolescents are, legally, children.

Tiffany Doe says that she recruited Jane Doe at the Port Authority in New York, persuaded her to attend Mr. Epstein’s parties, and actually witnessed the sexual assaults on Jane Doe:

I personally witnessed the Plaintiff being forced to perform various sexual acts with Donald J. Trump and Mr. Epstein. Both Mr. Trump and Mr. Epstein were advised that she was 13 years old.

It is exceedingly rare for a sexual assault victim to have a witness. But Tiffany Doe says:

I personally witnessed four sexual encounters that the Plaintiff was forced to have with Mr. Trump during this period, including the fourth of these encounters where Mr. Trump forcibly raped her despite her pleas to stop.

Tiffany Doe corroborates, based on her own personal observations, just about everything in Jane Doe’s complaint: that twelve year old Maria was involved in a sex act with Mr. Trump, that Mr. Trump threatened the life of Jane Doe if she ever revealed what happened, and that she would “disappear” like Maria if she did.

Tiffany Doe herself says that she is in mortal fear of Mr. Trump to this day:
I am coming forward to swear to the truthfulness of the physical and sexual abuse that I personally witnessed of minor females at the hands of Mr. Trump and Mr. Epstein . . . I swear to these facts under the penalty for perjury even though I fully understand that the life of myself and my family is now in grave danger.

Given all this, and based on the record thus far, Jane Doe’s claims appear credible. Mr. Epstein’s own sexual crimes and parties with underage girls are well documented, as is Mr. Trump’s relationship with him two decades ago in New York City. Mr. Trump told a reporter a few years ago: “I’ve known Jeff for 15 years. Terrific guy. He’s a lot of fun to be with. It is even said that he likes beautiful women as much as I do, and many of them are on the younger side. No doubt about it, Jeffrey enjoys his social life.”

Powerfully, Jane Doe appears to have an eyewitness to all aspects of her claim, a witness who appears to have put herself in substantial danger by coming forward, because at a minimum Mr. Epstein knows her true identity.

Jane Doe has not granted any interviews, and we don’t know anything about her background, or Tiffany Doe’s, or the details of their stories. Much information needs to be revealed to fully assess this case. Perhaps they will be discredited on cross-examination. Perhaps they will recant. But if we’re going to speculate in that direction, we should speculate in the other direction as well. Perhaps Jane Doe and her lawyer will have more evidence and witnesses to corroborate her claim. Perhaps witnesses from Mr. Epstein’s notorious parties will come forward. We just can’t know any of that at this point.

But based on what we do know now, Jane Doe’s claims fall squarely into the long, ugly context of Mr. Trump’s life of misogyny, are consistent with prior sexual misconduct claims, are backed up by an eyewitness, and thus should be taken seriously. Her claims merit sober consideration and investigation.

We live in a world where wealthy, powerful men often use and abuse women and girls. While these allegations may shock some, as a lawyer who represents women in sexual abuse cases every day, I can tell you that sadly, they are common, as is an accuser’s desire to remain anonymous, and her terror in coming forward.


Trump: The Worst Liar In Presidential History

Recently we carried an article that maintained Trump voters, weren’t stupid, they were just foolish, too credulous

At some point, however, as citizens, we need to be adults and look at the facts. There isn’t any controversy about whether trump is a liar or not, the only question, among an increasingly small group, is whether he lies more than other politicos. A Partial List Of Recent Trump Lies


On Sunday, Donald Trump denied that he had any relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin in an interview with ABC News.

Trump added his previous talk of him having a relationship with Putin was just the two saying nice things about each other.

“I don’t know what it means by having a relationship,” Trump added. “I mean, he was saying very good things about me. But I don’t have a relationship with him.”

In 2014, during a speech at CPAC[,] Trump, though, boasted about meeting with Putin’s advisers — even receiving a gift and personal note from Putin during the Miss Universe pageant in Moscow. . . .

In 2013, Trump told MSNBC he had a relationship with Putin. Mother Jones posted video last week of Trump saying he talked “indirectly and directly” with Putin in a 2014 press conference.

Trump also repeatedly said in the GOP presidential debates that he got to know Putin when both were on 60 Minutes. Now he says he wouldn’t know him from Adam (considering he doesn’t know Russia troops are in the Crimea, the last part might be true).

As with so many things, the question for Donald Trump is: Was he lying then or lying now? It’s equally likely he was lying back in 2013 and 2014 to make himself sound more important as it is that he is lying now to avoid sounding too chummy with the authoritarian he openly admires and consistently praises.

Meanwhile, Trump’s campaign manager Paul Manafort asserts the Trump team never did anything to take out of the platform support for defensive arms to Ukraine. My colleague Josh Rogin reports otherwise and says Manafort is lying. I’m going with Josh’s version on this one — as should any sentient being.

What Donald Trump is doing on the campaign trail

View Photos The GOP presidential nominee is out on the trail ahead of the general election in November.

Trump says he got a letter from the NFL pleading with him to reschedule the debates. The NFL says there was no letter. In the absence of, well, the letter, I’ll believe the NFL on this one.

Trump repeatedly said he would release his tax returns. Then he said he couldn’t because some years were being audited. No, he’s produced no audit letter nor logically explained why he couldn’t release some years’ returns. Now he says Mitt Romney lost because of his tax returns, suggesting that he just doesn’t want to release them because the demands for the returns are less painful than releasing what is in the returns.

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A boastful billionaire who says he’s been super generous to charity, you’d think, wouldn’t mind showing us just how rich and generous he is. Trump, a raving narcissist, however won’t let them out. I’m going with the theory they show he’s not so rich, not so generous and very good at paying little or no tax.

He lied about giving all that money to veterans’ charities — until The Post’s reporting forced him to cough up some money. The Post’s reporting says he has not given a dime to charity since 2008. He claims to have given “anonymously.” No recipients offered to come forward at the convention or anywhere else. Given that Trump brags incessantly about his charitable giving, there should be loads of beneficiaries, so I’ll go with the theory he’s not been charitable at all since 2008.

Trump lied, saying that it wasn’t his voice on a tape pretending to be his own publicist, even though in the past he said he would do this sort of thing.

He lied about seeing widespread celebrations by American Muslims on 9/11. He lies about what Hillary Clinton is proposing (e.g. “repeal the Second Amendment,”). He lies when caught saying something objectionable (e.g. his ear piece wasn’t working).

No wonder he’s gotten 4 Pinocchios from The Post — 33 times. Perhaps we should instead start keeping track of the times he tells the truth. It would be less work.

Jennifer Rubin

Jennifer Rubin writes the Right Turn blog for The Post, offering reported opinion from a conservative perspective.

 Follow @JRubinBlogger

Pro-Israel Voters , I get it

I understand why you resent President Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton. True, Obama has given Israel billions in military aid, protected Israel in the United Nations, and validated the country’s founding narrative. But he has been prickly in his approach to its leaders, fanatic in his opposition to settlements and unable to understand that Israelis respond better to love-love than tough love. I disagree when you call either of them “anti-Israel”: I reserve that term for people like Max “It’s a Mitzva” Blumenthal and Palestinian delegitimizers.

Still, Obama – and Clinton – often seem far angrier about housing starts by civilians in Israel than lives ended violently by terrorists in Israel, Syria and elsewhere.

And yes, I fear that president Hillary Clinton will come in with the same blame-Israel-first, settlement obsessed, tired peace processors who have failed for 20 years. I worry about the lurking influence of George Soros and Sidney Blumenthal. Moreover, I am distressed that the Democratic Party, while still overwhelmingly pro-Israel, has become the home to the radical anti-Israel forces in America – and that no Democrat of stature has had the nerve to confront them, saying: “Get out! Your anti-Zionism which masks antisemitism does not belong in my party.”

Still, I start with some assumptions before voting.

First, a patriot shouldn’t vote based on a single issue but on an overall assessment of the candidate’s policy and ideology. Second, character counts. The president combines the role of king (or queen) and prime minister; we need a good role model in the office. And third, regarding Israel, the old saying is correct: if America has the sniffles Israel catches a cold, or, more positively, what’s good for America is good for Israel.

Beyond Obama’s Israel churlishness, he has been disastrous for Israel because his farcical foreign policy has weakened America, the West and Israel. The weakness he broadcasts, his cowardice and incompetence regarding China, Syria, Islamic State, Iran and Russia have undermined Israel’s strategic strength as America’s loyal friend, more than any anti-housing or anti-Netanyahu temper tantrums.

Given those understandings, here are three groups of questions you should ask yourself before voting for Donald Trump. First, what policies actually will define this man with no governing experience, who contradicts himself mid-sentence, who treats facts and principles like silly putty to twist to satisfy the needs of the moment? He’s a twice-divorced darling of the Evangelicals, someone who was pro-choice until it was convenient to be pro-life, an unpredictable, showboating real estate gambler who has won big and lost big.

Every campaign appearance of his has been drive-by performance art suited to the age of bluster and Twitter, lacking thoughtful analysis or anchoring principles.

And how do you even know this self-absorbed deal-maker won’t decide he knows how to impose the right solution on the Israelis and the Palestinians? Second, and related, do you think this impulsive, egotistical narcissist has the temperament to be the most powerful person in the world and the character to represent an America that is now 78 percent white and 50% female? My issue is not with the offensive private banter he – and Bill Clinton and many other boors – indulge in. No, I fear his public statements. How could a president Trump earn respect from Mexican-Americans, from Muslim-Americans, from immigrants, from the disabled, when he has denigrated them so? Trump has lowered the rhetorical bar in American politics, pitted groups against others, stirring a nastiness that appalls and terrifies.

Obama’s election in 2008 offered a healing moment, allowing all Americans, black and white, Republican and Democrat, to appreciate that the country that once enslaved blacks could elect one president; a Trump election victory would be a traumatic moment demonstrating that ugliness, not character, counts – and inviting boorish imitators in future campaigns.

Finally, Hillary Clinton, for all her flaws, is a part of the system, for all its flaws. I understand the desire to shake things up but aren’t the stakes too high to fire so blindly? How can Trump translate his bluff and bluster into effective strategies against America’s enemies? In the debates, when pressed, he only repeats himself and uses words like “tremendous” – that’s posturing, not a strategy.

Last week, I moderated a debate between a Trump representative and a Clinton representative at the Israel Arts and Science Academy in Jerusalem. During the Q&A, these smart, idealistic Israeli high school students asked hard-hitting questions about both candidates which left me feeling depressed about both choices. But two questions, about Trump’s “racism” and ugly rhetoric, were truly devastating. I tried to be a fair moderator, asking the kinds of normal questions one asks about presidential candidates’ biographies and stands. I realized that, especially since Trump’s nomination, we have normalized his monstrosities, we have mainstreamed his deviance.

An Israeli newspaper or column shouldn’t endorse one candidate or another, but those of us who love America and Israel, who champion democratic and Jewish values, must point out just how outrageous Trump’s behavior has been – and how dangerous it could be in the Oval Office. Good luck to us all in choosing.

The author, professor of history at McGill University, is the author of The Age of Clinton: America in the 1990s, published by St. Martin’s Press. His next book will update Arthur Hertzberg’s The Zionist Idea. Follow on Twitter @GilTroy.

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Trump, the Elitist, Ultimate Insider

 a person who believes that a system or society should be ruled or dominated by an elite.
eg, Trump “I am the only one who can fix our country”

Now that Trump has been thoroughly exposed as a typical Insider, the most elite of the elite, his scam is unravelling.

This is the 1%er who bragged that if he ‘shot people on Park ave” his suckers would still support him.

As the candidate of the establishment, he has been given billions of dollars of free media to run his hustle on some ten million highly credulous believers. Trump is a member of the upper elite who is pathological in his dishonesty.

He makes fellow establishment characters like Romney look embarrassingly honest in comparison. His scam is somehow convincing the rubes that a multi-billionaire who brags about assaulting women, not paying taxes, cheating employees and bribing politicians is an “outsider”, and although the con is unravelling, his scam was successful for a ridiculously long time.
Trump, the most elite of the elitists, is still waiting for the sheeple to rally to his defense.

People who see the Emperor has no clothes can begin to act like adults and do the hard work of determining who should lead our country, trump, the ultimate insider, the establishment’s candidate,
Or ANYONE else.
Trump’s favorite quotation is “Never give a sucker an even break, nor smarten up a chump.”
Don’t let the elites punk you one more time, people.
Use some common sense.

Trump:What did these geniuses expect when they put men & women together?

Trump:What did these geniuses expect whenfor-men-not-to-rape

Donald Trump apparently still believes that if you put women and men together in the military of course it’s going to lead to a lot of rapes. ‘What did these geniuses expect when they put men & women together?’  Trump was confronted by Matt Lauer Wednesday night in the Commander-in- Chief forum with a three-year-old tweet of his.
Trump defended his 2013 tweet suggesting that high rate of unreported rape allegations could have been predicted when men and women were allowed to serve in the military.”It is a correct tweet. There are many people that think that is absolutely correct,” Trump said to Lauer.

Later Lauer asked trump if he still thought he knew more about ISIS than our Generals and he said”They have been reduced to rubble, our Generals.”

Later he said part of his “Secret Plan ” to defeat ISIS would be to give the Generals 30 days to come up with a plan.

The Generals he knows more than, the ones who have been reduced to rubble.




New poll Shows Trump Has Zero Chance of Winning In Electoral College

Hillary Clinton’s strength in many battlegrounds and some traditional Republican strongholds gives her a big electoral college advantage, according to a 50-state Washington Post poll. The survey of all 50 states is the largest sample ever undertaken by The Post. The state-by-state numbers are based on responses from more than 74,000 registered voters during the period of Aug. 9 to Sept. 1. The individual state samples vary in size from about 550 to more than 5,000, allowing greater opportunities than typical surveys to look at different groups within the population and compare them from state to state.

The massive survey highlights a critical weakness in Trump’s candidacy — an unprecedented deficit for a Republican among college-educated white voters, especially women. White college graduates have been loyal Republican voters in recent elections, but Trump is behind Clinton with this group across much of the country, including in some solidly red states.

The 50-state findings come at a time when the average national margin between Clinton and Trump has narrowed. What once was a Clinton lead nationally of eight to 10 points shortly after the party conventions ended a month ago is now about four points, according to the RealClearPolitics polling average. A number of battleground states also have tightened, according to surveys released from other organizations in recent days.

The Post results are consistent with many of those findings, but not in all cases. Trump’s support in the Midwest, where the electorates are generally older and whiter, appears stronger and offers the possibility of gains in places Democrats carried recently. He has small edges in two expected battlegrounds — Ohio and Iowa — and is close in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Michigan, each of which Democrats have won in six consecutive elections.

At the same time, however, Trump is struggling in places Republicans have won consistently and that he must hold to have any hope of winning. These states include Arizona and Georgia, as well as Texas — the biggest surprise in the 50-state results. The Texas results, which are based on a sample of more than 5,000 people, show a dead heat, with Clinton ahead by one percentage point.

Clinton also leads by fewer than four points in Colorado, Florida and is tied with Trump in North Carolina. In Colorado, other polls have shown a larger Clinton lead. In Mississippi, Trump’s lead is just two points, though it’s doubtful that the GOP nominee is in much danger there.

Electoral college advantage for Clinton

In a two-way competition between the major-party candidates, Clinton leads by four points or more in 20 states plus the District of Columbia. Together they add up to 244 electoral votes, 26 shy of the 270 needed to win.

Trump leads by at least four points in 20 states as well, but those add up to just 126 electoral votes. In the 10 remaining states, which hold 168 electoral votes, neither candidate has a lead of four percentage points or better.

A series of four-way ballot tests that include Libertarian Party nominee Gary Johnson and Green Party nominee Jill Stein project a somewhat narrower Clinton advantage, with more states showing margins of fewer than four points between the two major-party candidates. But even here, at the Labor Day weekend turn toward the Nov. 8 balloting, the pressure is on Trump to make up even more ground than he has in recent weeks if he hopes to win the White House.

The poll finds Johnson is poised to garner significant support. He is currently receiving at least 15 percent support in 15 states. The libertarian’s support peaks at 25 percent in New Mexico, where he served two terms as governor. He is only four points shy of Trump’s 29 percent standing there. His support in Utah is 23 percent, and in Colorado and Iowa it is 16 percent. Stein has less support in the poll, peaking at 10 percent in Vermont and receiving at least 7 percent support in 10 states.

Overall, the results reflect Trump’s strategy of maximizing support in older, whiter Midwestern states where his anti-free-trade message and appeals to national identity generally find more fertile ground.

But his struggles elsewhere, including places that have long supported Republicans, illustrate the challenges of that strategy in more diverse states where his stances on immigration and some other positions have turned off Democrats, independents and many Republicans.

Demographic divisions shape the competition

To win the election, Trump must quickly consolidate the Republican vote. With prominent Republicans declaring they will not support Trump and some even announcing they will back Clinton, this represents a major challenge for the GOP nominee. In the Post poll, Clinton is winning 90 percent or more of the Democratic vote in 32 states, while Trump is at or above that level in just 13.

As expected, the Clinton-Trump contest has split the electorate along racial lines. Their bases of support are mirror images: On average, Clinton does 31 points better among nonwhite voters than whites, and Trump does 31 points better among white voters than nonwhites.

The electorate is also divided along lines of gender and education, in many cases to a greater extent than in recent elections. Averaging across all 50 states, Clinton does 14 points better among women than men, and Trump does 16 points better among men than women. Clinton is winning among women in 34 states, and she’s close in six others. Trump leads among men in 38 states, is tied in six and trails in the other six.

It is among college-educated voters, however, where Trump faces his biggest hurdle. In 2012, white voters with college degrees supported Republican nominee Mitt Romney over President Obama by 56-42 percent. Romney won with 59 percent among white men with college degrees and with 52 percent among white women with college degrees.

So far in this campaign, Clinton has dramatically changed that equation. Among white college graduates, Clinton leads Trump in 31 of the 50 states, and the two are about even in six others. Trump leads among college-educated whites in just 13 states, all safe Republican states in recent elections.

Across 49 states where the poll interviewed at least 100 white college-educated women, Clinton leads Trump with this group in 38 states and by double-digit margins in 37. Averaging across all states, Clinton leads by 23 points among white women with college degrees.

Trump’s base among white voters without a college degree remains strong and substantial. He leads Clinton in 43 of the 50 states, and the two are roughly even in five others. She leads among white voters without a college degree in just one state: Vermont.

Overall, Clinton does 19 points better among white college graduates than whites without degrees while Trump does 18 points better among whites without degrees than whites with college educations, on average.

Trump’s challenge in the states that remain close will be to produce significant turnout among white, non-college voters to offset those Clinton margins, but it’s far from clear that there are enough of them to be decisive. Absent that, the GOP nominee must find a way to appeal to these college-educated voters during the final weeks of the campaign.

States and regions shaping the race

Trump’s strength across some of the states in the Midwest is one potential bright spot for the Republican nominee. Clinton’s biggest lead among the contested states in that region is in Pennsylvania, where her margin is just four points. In Wisconsin and Michigan, she leads by a nominal two points, while Trump leads by four points in Iowa and three points in Ohio.

Recent polls by other organizations have indicated that Wisconsin has tightened over the past month. A recent Suffolk University poll in Michigan shows Clinton leading by seven points, and the RealClearPolitics average in Ohio shows Clinton ahead by three points. Overall, among the quintet of Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa and Pennsylvania, Michigan has been the Democrats’ most reliable of the group, always one of the 15 best-performing Democratic states over the past five elections.

The Rocky Mountain West is another area of fierce competition. The Post-SurveyMonkey poll shows Colorado closer than other polls there, with Clinton leading by just two points and the race tied when Johnson and Stein are included. Meanwhile, Clinton and Trump are roughly even in Arizona. InNevada, Clinton enjoys a lead of five points in head-to-head competition with Trump but by just three points in a four-way test.

Of all the states, Texas provided the most unexpected result. The Lone Star State has been a conservative Republican bastion for the past four decades. In 2012, President Obama lost the state by 16 points. For Democrats, it has been among the 10 to 15 worst-performing states in the past four elections.

The Post poll of Texas shows a dead heat with Clinton at 46 percent and Trump at 45 percent. Democrats have long claimed that changing demographics would make the state competitive in national elections, but probably not for several more cycles.

A comparison of the current survey with the 2008 Texas exit poll (there was no exit poll there in 2012) points to reasons the race appears close right now. Trump is performing worse than 2008 GOP nominee John McCain among both whites and Hispanics, while Clinton is doing slightly better than Obama.

Among men, Trump is doing slightly worse than McCain did eight years ago. The bigger difference is among women. McCain won a narrow majority of women in Texas while Trump is currently below 40 percent. That’s not to say Texas is turning blue in 2016. Given its history, it probably will back Trump in November and possibly by a comfortable margin. But at this stage, the fact that it is close at all is one more surprise in a surprising year.

Emily Guskin contributed to this report.