As Florida Begins Early Voting, Election Polls Give Joe Biden Slight Edge Over Donald Trump in Key State

Early voting begins in Florida on Monday, with polling giving Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden a slight lead over President Donald Trump in the state. This may prove crucial in deciding the Electoral College outcome.

Florida has 29 Electoral College votes, making it a major coup in the race to 270. Early voting runs from October 19 to November 1.

Trump won the state in 2016, defeating then-Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton by around 1.2 percent with some 112,000 more votes.

However, the state has regularly switched in recent presidential elections, with Barack Obama winning there in 2008 and 2012, and George W. Bush in 2000 and 2004.

Since 1964 the state has voted for the winner in each presidential election except for 1992.

Polls ahead of November 3 show a tight race between Trump and Biden, with the latter taking a slight advantage.

Real Clear Politics' tracker puts Biden up by 1.4 points, with an average of 48.2 percent of the vote compared to 46.8 for Trump.

Some of the recent polling in the state puts the pair at a dead heat.

Survey Monkey polling, among 14,126 likely voters in the state from September 20 to October 17, put them each on 49 percent of the vote.

While a Hill/Harris X poll, among 965 likely voters asked online October 12 to 15, put the pair at 48 percent each.

However, amid these tied results, other surveys have shown voters slightly in Biden's favor.

A Mason-Dixon poll put Biden up three points, with 48 percent of 625 registered voters asked over telephone October 8 to 12 going for him, compared to 45 percent for Trump. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus four percentage points.

Of 653 likely voters asked October 7 to 14 by Ipsos, 49 percent said they were backing Biden over 47 percent for Trump. This gives Biden a 2-point advantage, though the margin of error was plus or minus 4.6 percent.

On the other hand, polling from Trafalgar Group, among 1,051 likely voters asked October 11 to 13, gave Trump a slight advantage.

Of those asked, 48.4 percent intended to vote for Trump. Biden garnered support from 46.1 percent of those asked. The polling has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.94 percent.

Newsweek has contacted the Trump and Biden campaigns for comment on the state of play in Florida.

Large numbers in Florida have already returned mail-in ballots, with more than 2 million having been sent according to the state's Division of Elections website.

The Biden campaign has previously expressed its focus on the state, telling those involved in the Democrat's bid to "campaign like we're trailing," according to a New York Times report.

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Wearing a face mask to reduce the risk posed by the coronavirus, Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden points to supporters during a drive-in voter mobilization event at Miramar Regional Park October 13, 2020 in Miramar, Florida. Polling has put the state as a tight race, though given Biden a slight advantage over President Donald Trump. Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images