Photo credit: Gage Skidmore/Marc Nozell
Photo credit: Gage Skidmore/Marc Nozell
Photo credit: Gage Skidmore/Marc Nozell

Polling indicates the eve before Election Day the presidential race between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump will be very close both in terms of popular vote and the electoral college.

Right now Clinton leads Trump by 3.2 percent average, according to Real Clear Politics’ average of 4-way national polling. Below is a snapshot of the last polls taken of this race.

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Clinton has consistently led in national polling since May with her largest average margin being 7 percent, and her smallest being 1.1 percent. If you compare this to 2012 the day before Election Day President Barack Obama led Mitt Romney by an 0.7 percent average. Obviously the results were not that close. President Obama won reelection by 3.9 percent of the vote – 51.1 percent to 47.2 percent. He won the electoral college by an even wider margin – 332 to 206.

Comparing this to 2008 then U.S. Senator Barack Obama (D-IL) led U.S. Senator John McCain (R-AZ) an average of  7.6 percent the day before Election Day. This was extremely close to the outcome. Obama beat McCain by 7.3 percent – 52.9 percent to 45.6 percent. They were tromped in the Electoral College – 365 to 173.

Looking back at 2004 President George W. Bush led then U.S. Senator John Kerry (D-MA) by an RCP average of 1.5 percent. He won by 2.4 percent – 50.7 percent to 48.3 percent. He won the Electoral College 286 to 252.

Then finally going back to 2000. We can’t look at Real Clear Politics polling averages since they were not in existence then. Polling Report listed the last 15 polls taken before the election. An average of those shows then Texas Governor George W. Bush leading Vice President Al Gore 46.9 percent to 44.9 percent. As we all know Bush lost the popular vote 47.9 percent to 48.4 percent, but won the Electoral College 271 to 266.

Obviously the polls were wrong about the national general election outcome even though the results were well within the margin of error. It still predicted the eventual winner however. Since the national polling average has been accurate in terms of predicting the winner as well.

Trump has claimed the polls are skewed. We’ll see tomorrow if he is right. So that is the national polling, the Electoral College is what will determine the results so let’s see where we are at on the final day.

Both candidates have had states that were in their column move to a toss-up category since late last week. Right now Hillary Clinton leads the Electoral College (based on state polling) 203 to 164. For Hillary Clinton – Maine, Michigan and New Mexico has been moved out of her column into the toss-up category since last week. For Donald Trump the state Georgia is once again considered a toss-up.

So the final polling map including toss-up states looks like this.

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If toss-up polling results don’t change on election day Clinton wins the Electoral College 272 to 266. Here’s the map.

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Looking at the toss-up states.

Florida

In Florida Donald Trump leads by a 0.2 percent average margin. Below is the charts of the last polls.

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If I were in the Trump camp I wouldn’t feel comfortable with Florida since the two polls that show him in the lead released since last weekend are Republican-based polls. Also Hispanic turnout in South Florida, particularly in Miami-Dade County is over performing with early voting. That is not a good trend for Donald Trump. Considering the state has gone Democrat in the last two elections, and Trump’s general weakness among Hispanic voters this looks like it could go Clinton’s way.

Ohio

Trump currently has an average lead of 3.5 percent over Clinton in the Buckeye state. Here is the final polling snapshot.

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Trump’s lead has widened a little since October. With the last two of the last four polls showing a 7 percent and 5 percent margin, it looks like Trump will in all likelihood win the state.

Michigan

Clinton currently holds a 4.7 percent lead over Trump in Michigan. Here is a snapshot of the latest polls.

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Clinton in mid-October held an average 11 point lead over Trump. He has steadily improved and there was not any polling taken over the weekend.

Ignoring Public Policy Polling I’ll look at the two non-partisan pollsters. The Fox 2 Detroit/Mitchell poll shows Clinton gaining among white women, but the third party candidates gained among young voters. Even so she expanded her margin from three points to five in their poll. The Detroit Free Press poll shows Trump gaining among independents. Clinton was up one point since their last poll, but Trump has gained four points.

So he has momentum. A couple questions that will determine how this goes – how well do evangelicals turn out for Trump in Western Michigan? Will he see a decrease among evangelical women? Also the young adult voting bloc has been traditionally Democratic, how many will peal away to 3rd party candidates? Also does Clinton do as well among Black voters as Obama did? She still has an advantage over Trump – 80 percent to 12 percent in the Fox 2 poll.

If his momentum continued over the weekend to Election Day he could pull off a Michigan win.

Pennsylvania

Trump has moved up on Clinton in the Keystone State. She currently holds just a 1.9 percent lead.

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Trump’s two best polls among the final polls are from Republican pollsters. The Gravis poll was done for Breitbart News. Susquehanna also has a number of Republican clients. That doesn’t mean they are inaccurate, but it needs to be mentioned. Clinton’s best average lead was in August when she led by 10 points. That lead shrank to two points in late September, but then expanded to an 8 point lead in early October. The margin closed again last week.

Considering four of the final six polls are done by Republican pollsters and/or commissioned by conservative organizations I’m really not so sure Pennsylvania is as close as the polls indicate. That could be wrong, but I’d rather see some independent polling. You remove those polls she has an average lead of 4 percent which is still closer than the Clinton campaign would like to see I’m sure.

I have a gut feeling that Clinton will maintain her lead in Pennsylvania, but would not be surprised if Trump wins either.

New Hampshire

Clinton currently holds a 0.6 percent average lead in New Hampshire.

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I wonder the WMUR/UNH Granite State Poll is an outlier as that shows an 11 point lead. They predict a 51 percent to 40 percent win for Clinton tomorrow in the Granite State. This is just so far out-of-line compared to the other polling. Clinton leads among self-indentified independents in this poll by 3 points. His lead among men (42 percent to 37 percent) is not as strong as her advantage among women (57 percent to 33 percent). If this poll is accurate Trump loses in New Hampshire, but they have given Clinton wider margins in all their polling than anyone else.

Looking at the Emerson College poll it didn’t really have any cross-tabs so it is hard to compare. They show  the margin between Trump and Clinton shrinking by two points while the Granite State Poll shows it widening by four points since they both polled last.

Looking at the other non-partisan polls (minus Gravis/Breitbart) Boston Globe/Suffolk shows Clinton dropping two points since they lsat polled. ARG has not polled before in New Hampshire so I don’t have anything to compare it to. UMass Lowell/7 News poll shows Clinton dropping one and Trump gaining by six points since they last polled in early October. Clinton dropped two and Trump gained two since WBUR/MassINC last polled in early October.

I think the trend is that the race is tightening in New Hampshire. I definitely feel it will be closer than the last Granite State Poll indicates.

Maine

There has not been any November polling so here is where it currently stands.

In Maine CD 1

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In Maine CD 2

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Maine statewide 

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Trump’s strongest chance in Maine is to pick up an electoral vote in Maine’s 2nd Congressional District. Clinton in the last three statewide polls has a 4 percent, 5 percent and 11 percent lead. These polls were taken in late October. We really don’t know if there has been any movement. The last Emerson poll was taken in early September when Clinton had a 9 point lead. The MPRC poll shows Clinton’s lead going from 8 points in early October to 4 points right before the final week.

I think it is unlikely Trump will flip the state, especially not in Maine’s 1st Congressional District, but he could come out of the state with one electoral vote.

North Carolina

Things looked better for Trump last week in the Tarheel State. He currently holds a one point average lead.

Here is a snapshot of the last few polls that make up the average.

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This state is even more up in the air than New Hampshire.

Virginia

I’m pretty confident Virginia will go in Clinton’s column by tomorrow night. She currently has a five point average lead. Here’s a snapshot.

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That said she has seen her lead drop. For instance with the Christopher Newport University poll she has gone from a 15 point lead in the 2nd week of October to a six point lead now. The Roanoke College poll Clinton’s lead shrink by 2 points since October. The Emerson Poll shows her lead expanding by one since they polled last in the 2nd week of October.

Georgia

Trump holds a 4.8 percent average lead in Georgia. This state shouldn’t even be a toss-up state. It’s the Red State that Hillary Clinton is the most likely to cherry pick away from Trump, but I don’t think she will.

Here is latest snapshot of polls that make up the average.

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There has not been much repetitive polling to see how things have changed in the race. With the latest polls he still maintains his lead. I just don’t see Georgia turning blue.

Colorado

Clinton has a 2.9 percent average lead in the polls. Here is a snapshot.

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It is unfortunate all of the November polls are partisan polls. The race has tightened, and Clinton is in a dangerous position. If Clinton is toppled in Colorado it may because the 3rd party candidates – Gary Johnson and Jill Stein are pulling more from her base than they are impacting Donald Trump.

Nevada

Trump currently has a 1.5 percent average lead in Nevada. Here is the snapshot.

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It seems like this race has tightened. Even the Republican pollster is showing a one point lead for Clinton. The Emerson poll actually represents a one point drop for Clinton since last week, and it seems like undecideds are breaking more toward Trump than Clinton as Trump gained four points since their last poll and Clinton only gained three. The CNN/ORC poll showed an eight point swing to Trump. 8 News NOW poll also shows a Clinton drop.

The trend is toward Trump.

New Mexico

Clinton holds a five point lead in New Mexico, but is in a dangerous position. Here is a snapshot.

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What moved this state from likely Clinton to a toss-up state is the Zia Poll, they have done most of the polling in the state and they have shown a steady decline by Clinton. In mid-October she had a 10 point lead, she now leads that poll by only 2 points.

The latest poll showed an interesting trend.

Clinton still leads among females and Hispanic/Latino voters, however Trump is now leading Clinton by 5 points in the crossover vote, more Democrats are voting for Trump than Republicans are voting for Clinton.

It will be interesting to see if the trend continues. New Mexico is likely to be a nail biter.

Arizona

Trump holds a 4 point average lead. Here is a snapshot.

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He recovered his lead after losing it in mid-October. There was not any polling over the weekend, but I think Arizona is Trump’s state to lose.

Iowa

Trump now has a 3 point average lead. Here is a snapshot.

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The Des Moines Register‘s Iowa Poll shows Trump surging. They have been accurate in the past. There is nothing that I see in my own state that leads me to believe he won’t win it

Conclusion: 

Some have suggested that Minnesota and Wisconsin are in play, but I just don’t see it.

Some wild cards:

  • Early voting – in many states voting has been going on for a month.
  • Hispanic voters – will we see an increase in turnout?
  • Evangelical women – will they support Trump at the same levels they have supported other Republicans in the past?
  • African-American voters – can Clinton win them at the same levels that President Obama and her husband did?
  • Young adult vote – they don’t seem to be as reliable for Clinton as they have for other Democrats in the past.

For Trump to win he needs to hold Florida and the other toss-up states he is currently leading in and win one other state. New Hampshire could be that state. If so he wins 270 to 268. Michigan, Colorado, New Mexico and Pennsylvania are other possibilities.

On Election Day eve things look a lot better for Trump, and his chances have increased tremendously. It should be an interesting to watch as results come in tomorrow night.

1 comment
  1. I know hindsight is 20/20, but looking back on your figures is interesting. The one thing that jumps out at me is that seemingly, the Partisan/Republican Polls you tended to discount, ended up being more accurate.

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