LA Times published the results of a new national poll. In this poll, participants were asked for whom they will vote: Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump.
LA Times poll results
According to the results, 45.0% of interviewees would give their vote to former New York Senator Hillary Clinton, whereas 44.0% plan to vote for businessman Donald Trump.
The poll was conducted from September 2 to September 8 with 2653 participants. The sampling error is +/-4.5 percentage points. This means that the levels of voter support for the candidates of both parties do not differ significantly.
Putting the results in context
In general, however, don't have too much faith in the results of single polls, because they can contain large errors. At the very least, one should check how a poll's results compare to benchmark forecasts.
For the following comparison, we translate Clinton's and Trump's raw poll numbers into shares of the two-party vote. This yields figures of 50.6% for Clinton and 49.4% for Trump. In the most recent LA Times poll on September 8 Clinton received 51.1%, while Trump received only 48.9%.
Comparison to other polls
An average of recent polls has Clinton at 52.1% of the two-party vote. In comparison to numbers in the LA Times poll Clinton's poll average is 1.5 percentage points better. This difference is within the poll's margin of error, which means that the poll is not an outlier.
Comparison to the combined PollyVote
The latest PollyVote anticipates Clinton to gain 52.6% of the two-party vote. That is, Polly's combined forecast is 2.0 points above polling numbers. The PollyVote forecast is thus within the poll's error margin.