Trump's victory relies on surges of white voters

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To Win the White House, Trump Needs To Win White Voters

Donald Trump has a really hard time appealing to minorities. This is an issue GOP presidential candidates have struggled with since the 1960s, but Trump has really upped the ante this year.

SEE MORE: Black Voters In Philly Explain Why Trump Is Polling At Zero Percent

So unless he changes his tone and tactics when it comes to minorities, Trump's only hope is to get a strong hold on the white working class and keep it until Nov. 8.

According to a poll released Thursday, only 17 percent of non-white voters support Trump — and that includes just 1 percent from African-Americans nationwide. Some of that may have to do with Hillary Clinton's convention bump, so those numbers could improve in a couple of weeks after everything settles down.

But it could also get worse: In just the past week, Trump got into a bizarre feud with the parents of a Muslim-American soldier killed in Iraq in 2004.

RELATED: Presidential election voter preference by race

Trump's been laying the groundwork with the white working class since before he announced his candidacy. His primary race was built around white working class resentment of a changing world. And one of Trump's major platform planks is being against international trade deals, which have really decimated workers in the Rust Belt.

To be competitive, he'll have to do a whole lot better than other GOP nominees in the past, who received anywhere from 55 percent to 59 percent of the white vote in the most recent cycles. That's going to be pretty tough: No presidential candidate has won more than 66 percent of white voters since Ronald Reagan in '84, and the country looks a lot different than it did back then.

RELATED: Politicians who support Trump

10 PHOTOS
Politicians who refuse to support Donald Trump
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Politicians who refuse to support Donald Trump

Mitt Romney has been critical of Trump's rhetoric. REUTERS/Jim Urquhart

Senator John Thune (R-SD) addresses delegates during the third session of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida, August 29, 2012. REUTERS/Mike Segar (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS ELECTIONS)

Former U.S. President George H. W. Bush has not endorsed Trump, and insiders revealed in September he plans to vote for Hillary Clinton.

REUTERS/Richard Carson (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT FOOTBALL)

Jeb Bush, former Governor of Florida and 2016 Republican presidential candidate, was one of Donald Trump's primary targets during the primary season. 

Daniel Acker/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Former Republican presidential candidate and Ohio Governor John Kasich stayed in the primary longer than most other candidates, and notably refused to appear at the GOP convention in the same arena with Trump, attending other events instead. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), a close friend to Sen. John McCain, has been a vocal critic of Trump's. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
UPDATE: Although he didn't endorse Trump during the 2016 convention, Ted Cruz eventually changed his mind, saying in September he'd vote for the GOP nominee (Photo by Ida Mae Astute/ABC via Getty Images) 
Pictured: George Pataki participates in CNBC's 'Your Money, Your Vote: The Republican Presidential Debate' live from the University of Colorado Boulder in Boulder, Colorado Wednesday, October 28th at 6PM ET / 8PM ET -- (Photo by: David A. Grogan/CNBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images)
U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) addresses the second session of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida August 28, 2012. REUTERS/Mike Segar (UNITED STATES - Tags: POLITICS ELECTIONS)
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