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Superstar ally Michelle Obama hits trail with Clinton

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Democrat Hillary Clinton hits the campaign trail Thursday with Michelle Obama, surprise star of the 2016 White House race, as the former and current first ladies fight to lock in battleground states ahead of November’s election. Obama has emerged as a compelling force in the hard-fought campaign, delivering powerful arguments against Republican Donald Trump and in support of Clinton’s bid to become the first female president in US history. But Michelle and Hillary will join forces on the trail for the first time when they headline a rally at a university in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, a key swing state where early voting is underway.

The 52-year-old wife of President Barack Obama has energized the Democratic camp with a series of speeches taking Trump to task for his strident rhetoric and for what she brands his “frightening” attitude towards women. And in the closing two weeks of the unprecedented race, Clinton is capitalizing on one of the most popular Democrats in America to help make her case. Clinton holds the momentum as the clock ticks down to November 8, the polls crediting her with a compelling lead over Trump, but her Republican rival has pledged to pour millions more of his own dollars into his teetering White House bid.

The latest rolling poll average compiled by tracker RealClearPolitics showed Clinton with a 5.4 point lead in a national race against Trump and two outsiders — pointing to a likely electoral college victory. “I feel really good, energized, working hard,” the former secretary of state told reporters aboard her plane Wednesday, her 69th birthday. “We built this campaign over a year and a half, now we see the results of all that hard work.” Trump’s standing has been hit hard, particularly among female voters, since this month’s release of a 2005 video in which he boasts that his celebrity allows him to grope women with impunity.

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