NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WVEC) -- Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump now trails Democratic rival Hillary Clinton by seven points in Virginia, according to the Wason Center for Public Policy at Christopher Newport University.

In recent surveys released by CNU, Clinton had been leading by as much as 15 points in Virginia. She now holds 46 percent of likely votes in Virginia, compared to Trump's 39 percent.

“True to form for the past several statewide elections in Virginia, Republican voters appear to be coming home late, but coming home,” said Dr. Quentin Kidd, Director of the Wason Center. “That’s good news for Trump, and especially good news for the Republican candidates down-ballot.”

According to the survey, Trump's rise among voters is due to the return of Republican women to his camp. Clinton still leads among women, 46-36 percent, however, that gender gap has dropped from 20 points.

“Republican women who were holding back or even considering a vote for Clinton, appear to be making peace with Trump as the reality of a Clinton win sinks in," said Dr. Rachel Bitecofer, Assistant Director of the Wason Center. "That would explain the surge in women saying they will vote for Trump and the way the party loyalty gap has closed."

In addition, a gap in party loyalty that has favored Clinton since CNU began its tracking surveys is closing. Clinton maintains 87 percent of Democrats' support. Trump has now increased his support among Republicans to 84 percent, compared to 72 percent in a previous poll.

The survey was conducted Oct. 23-26 among 814 likely Virginia voters. It has an overall margin of error of +/- 4.2%.

To see the full study, click here.