The second presidential debate Sunday between Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton and her Republican counterpart Donald Trump is one of the last chances for the two hopefuls to plead their case to voters in swings states that could decide the Nov. 8 election.
Virginia has traditionally been one of these battleground states that could go either way on Election Day, although President Barack Obama, a Democrat, did win the state in both 2008 and 2012. And according to recent polling, it's increasingly looking like it'll go to the Democrats again in 2016.
The Real Clear Politics average of polls pegged the former secretary of state's lead in Virginia at 8.2 percentage points heading into the weekend. That's down from a double-digit gap in mid-August, but up from early September surveys that showed her lead to be as little as 1 point.
A poll after the first debate showed Clinton improved her standing in the state with her performance. In a five-person field, she led Trump by 7 percentage points, 42 percent to 35 percent, according to the Christopher Newport University survey released this week. That was up 1 point from the university's previous survey in September. Perhaps more importantly, the poll found her support among millennials, a demographic in which Clinton has struggled, was up 7 percentage points.
"Hillary Clinton’s debate performance has improved her position in Virginia slightly,” said Quentin Kidd, director of the Wason Center for Public Policy at Christopher Newport University, in a statement. "Most significant is perhaps her improved support among younger voters, a critical part of the Obama coalition."
A CBS/YouGov survey taken before the debate, meanwhile, found Clinton ahead by 8 percentage points among likely voters.
Most signs are pointing toward good news for the Democratic nominee. The polls-only election forecast at the data-driven website FiveThirtyEight gave her an 88.9 percent chance of winning Virginia heading into the weekend. It also gave her a nearly 80 percent chance of the winning the election.