Suffolk UniversitySuffolk University released the results of a new poll, in which respondents from Florida were asked for whom they will vote: Democrat candidate Hillary Clinton or Republican candidate Donald Trump.
In Florida, the election outcome is usually decided by a narrow margin. Therefore, the state is commonly regarded as a purple state, which makes it particularly interesting from a forecasting perspective.
Suffolk UniversitySuffolk University poll results
According to the results, 48.0% of respondents plan to give their vote to former First Lady Hillary Clinton, whereas 42.0% plan to vote for billionaire Donald Trump.
The poll was conducted from August 1 to August 3. A total of 500 likely voters responded. The margin of error is +/-4.4 percentage points. This means that the levels of voter support for the two candidates do not differ significantly.
Putting the results in context
In general, however, one should not have too much faith in the results of single polls, since they may contain large errors. Instead of relying on results from single polls, the evidence-based approach is to use combined polls or, even better, a combined forecast that includes different methods and data.
For the following analysis, we translate the candidates' raw poll numbers into two-party vote shares. This procedure yields values of 53.3% for Clinton and 46.7% for Trump.
Comparison to other polls
If we look at an average of Florida polls, Clinton's two-party vote share is currently at 51.5%. Compared to her numbers in the Suffolk UniversitySuffolk University poll Clinton's poll average is 1.8 percentage points worse. This difference is within the poll's sampling error, which suggests that the poll is not an outlier.
Comparison to the combined PollyVote
The latest PollyVote anticipates Clinton to gain 50.6% of the two-party vote in Florida. This means that the PollyVote is 2.7 points below her polling numbers. Again, a look at the poll's error margin shows that this difference is insignificant.