US Election: The key battleground states to watch out for

Either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump will be declared the next president of the United States following Tuesday's election. Picture: AFP/Robyn Beck
Either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump will be declared the next president of the United States following Tuesday's election. Picture: AFP/Robyn Beck
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Tuesday is the culmination of a gruelling and often controversial US Presidential election campaign. But as the votes are counted across America, with millions watching around the world, which key states could make or break the hopes of Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump?

GEORGIA

Picture: PA

Picture: PA

The southern state is a traditional Republican stronghold, but Hillary Clinton has proved surprisingly strong here. If she can pull off a surprise win in the so-called Peach State, the race is over and UK viewers can retire to bed. Even if Trump wins as expected, the voting turnout will offer a strong indication of how he’ll perform in other, smaller states.

VIRGINIA

A shock win in Virigina would set Donald Trump on the path to victory. But the businessman has struggled in the north-eastern state so far in the campaign, with Clinton ahead by three or four points in recent polls.

NORTH CAROLINA

Clinton’s campaign has dubbed North Carolina the “checkmate state” - if she wins here, then Trump’s likely route to victory is effectively blocked. The Republican has drawn levels in recent polls in the state - but YouGov’s final poll had Clinton just ahead. If Trump does win North Carolina, he will also require victory in the swing states of Ohio and Iowa, as well as Florida and Nevada. North Carolina voted for Obama in 2008 but was won back by the Republicans in 2012.

FLORIDA / OHIO / ARIZON

Trump must prevent Clinton from winning any of these key states if he is to claim the presidency. He has been marginally ahead in Ohio and Arizona - but Clinton’s campaign are hopeful of pulling off a surprise win in the latter, despite not backing a Democrat in two decades. Florida is too close to call.

NEVADA

If the race is as tight as many expect, a late win in Nevada could be enough to secure victory for either Clinton or Trump. The Democrat has maintainted a one or two point lead in the state in recent polls.