- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 12, 2016

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - Donald Trump has begun spending money on advertising in Wisconsin as he prepares to return next week and Hillary Clinton’s lead in the state grows.

A Marquette University Law School poll showing that her lead over Trump in Wisconsin has widened to 7 points. Three weeks ago the poll showed Clinton holding a 3-point edge. Clinton has never trailed in the poll.

Kantar Media’s political ad tracker showed Wednesday that Trump has reserved about $600,000 in airtime over the next few weeks. Trump’s campaign had not spent anything on ads in the state until this week and Clinton has yet to spend any money on ads in Wisconsin or campaigned in the state.

No details have been released about where Trump planned to campaign on Monday. He was supposed to have been in the state last weekend for an event with House Speaker Paul Ryan and other Republicans. But Ryan canceled the visit after audio surfaced of Trump making crude comments about women.

Trump is airing several different ads in Wisconsin. Among them is one attacking Clinton’s record and comments, including her statement calling half of Trump’s supporters “deplorable.” Another ad he is running in the state is a positive spot touting Trump’s tax cut plans.

Clinton’s Wisconsin campaign spokeswoman Gillian Drummond had no comment on the ad buys. While Clinton has not campaigned in the state, she has sent a number of surrogates in recent days, including her husband, former President Bill Clinton; Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders; and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

Trump’s comments about women caused wide swings in public opinion across demographic groups, the poll found. It questioned voters before, during and after the tape’s release showed.

The Trump audio of him recounting how being “a star” allowed him to grope women was released Friday afternoon. That led to Ryan canceling a Trump campaign appearance in Wisconsin with him on Saturday. Pollsters began making landline and cellphone calls on Thursday and ended Sunday night before the second presidential debate.

The Marquette poll surveyed 878 likely voters. It had a margin of error of 3.9 percentage points.

On Thursday, before Trump’s comments came to light, likely voters supported Trump by 1 point, well within the poll’s margin of error. Clinton led by 6 points on Friday, the day the tape was released.

On Saturday and Sunday, Clinton’s lead was 19 points.

Clinton went from being down 12 points among men on Thursday to being up 1. Clinton’s lead among women was dramatic: from up 9 points Thursday to up 33 over the weekend.

Even among white voters without a college degree, Clinton went from being down 15 points to up 7.

Trump maintained his advantage with evangelical voters, but even that dropped from 40 points to 16.

Pollster Charles Franklin said that while the release of the tape caused “significant” shifts in opinions, there was no way to know whether Clinton’s advantages would hold. The next and final poll will be released on Nov. 2, six days before the election.


Follow Scott Bauer on Twitter at https://twitter.com/sbauerAP and find more of his work at https://bigstory.ap.org/content/scott-bauer

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