Results of a new poll conducted by Suffolk University were spread. The poll asked interviewees from Ohio for whom they will vote: Democrat candidate Hillary Clinton or Republican candidate Donald Trump.
In Ohio, the popular vote is often decided by a narrow margin. This is why the state is commonly viewed as a swing state, which makes it particularly interesting from a forecasting perspective.
Suffolk University poll results
The results show that 39.0% of interviewees plan to cast a ballot for former New York Senator Hillary Clinton, while 42.0% intend to vote for billionaire Donald Trump.
The poll was conducted from September 12 to September 14. A total of 500 likely voters responded. There is a sampling error of +/-4.4 percentage points. Considering this error margin, the race is currently a statistical tie.
Putting the results in context
In general, however, you should not have too much faith in the results of single polls, because they may contain large errors. Instead of trusting the results from single polls, the recommended strategy rely on combined polls or, even better, a combined forecast that relies on different methods and data.
For the following analysis, we convert Clinton's and Trump's raw poll numbers into shares of the two-party vote. This procedure yields figures of 48.2% for Clinton and 51.9% for Trump. In the most recent Suffolk University poll on July 20 Clinton obtained 50.0%, while Trump obtained only 0.0%.
Results in comparison to other polls
An average of recent polls in Ohio sees Trump at 50.6% of the two-party vote. This value is 1.3 percentage points lower than her respective numbers in the Suffolk University poll. This difference is within the poll's margin of error, which means that the poll is not an outlier.
The poll in comparison with PollyVote's prediction
The most recent PollyVote predicts Trump to gain 48.6% of the two-party vote in Ohio. This means that the PollyVote forecast is 3.3 points below her polling numbers. Again, a look at the poll's margin of error suggests that this difference is insignificant.