YOUR VOTE 2016: Candidates hit campaign trail hard 16 days before election

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, left, stands with Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton before the first presidential debate at Hofstra University, Monday, Sept. 26, 2016, in Hempstead, N.Y. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, left, stands with Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton before the first presidential debate at Hofstra University, Monday, Sept. 26, 2016, in Hempstead, N.Y. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

TAMPA, Fla.  (WFLA) – With just 16 days to go until election days, both Democratic Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump are hitting the campaign trail hard, especially in key battleground states.

The Clinton campaign faces more backlash this week over emails released by Wikileaks, while another Trump accuser steps forward accusing him of sexual misconduct.

Clinton has said she no longer cares what Trump might say and will focus on the issues instead. Much of the recent focus on the campaign trails has been on controversies linked to Trump’s campaign but at the end of the day, we wanted to know if these controversies will matter to the voter come election day.

We asked Joe Gruter, Trump’s Florida campaign director and Susan McGrath of the Pinellas Democrats. The issue of women accusing Trump of sexual assault continues to overshadow his campaign. Now Trump is threatening them with lawsuits but many wonder if Trump can overcome these claims to win.

“What’s important to remember now is as of Wednesday, 880,000 people have voted in Florida,” McGrath pointed out. “Roughly, less than 53 percent of the population are women but now more than 55 percent of the voters are women so women are going to be an important force in this election.”

“I think that’s what the Democrats want you to focus on but really, in reality, Donald Trump has promoted lots of women in his own organization,” Gruters told News Channel 8.

Meantime, Wikileaks continues its release of Clinton campaign emails. We wanted to know if these emails should be a campaign and if there is anything in these emails so deeply concerning that Clinton should not be elected president.

“What it shows you is that Hillary Clinton is the epicenter of greed, corruption, conspiracies,” Gruters said.  “Her own communications director said take the money when talking about lobbyists for foreign governments.”

“We do know the FBI believes that Russia is behind this leak and the important question we have to think about is why does Vladimir Putin want Donald Trump to be President,” McGrath told News Channel 8.

Trump’s polling averages have never been worse, from leading in many critical swing states one month ago to behind in all but one.  That state is Ohio where new polling shows the race is a dead heat.

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