++Addition++Cicatrizatic on why Trump should narrowly win Nevada and North Carolina as well.
Through Friday, Republicans held a slim lead in early voting in Florida:
In 2012, Democrats had a 3%-5% advantage (depending on the source) at the same point in the cycle.
So Republicans are up a couple thousand votes now and Democrats were up 50,000 at the same point four years ago. Big deal, there are more outstanding Democrat ballots than Republican ones. Democrats will probably narrowly reclaim the early voting advantage by election day.
That's not why Trump looks like the better bet here. Independents and unaffiliated voters are the reason he does.
In 2012, Obama beat Romney 50%-47% among independents in Florida. Polls show Trump with an 8-15 point lead among independents nationwide. Among the most recent RCP polls out of Florida, Trump leads among independents by 6 points and by 13 points.
If we take the pessimistic end of the range and assume Trump is up on Hillary by 6 points among those without a major party affiliation, say 53%-47%, we go from a Republican advantage of less than 2,000 votes to a Republican advantage of nearly 70,000, with polls in Florida showing Trump with a double-digit lead among those who plan to vote on election day.