Quinnipiac released the results of a new poll, in which respondents from North Carolina were asked for whom they will vote: Democrat candidate Hillary Clinton or Republican candidate Donald Trump.
Quinnipiac poll results
Of those who responded, 50.0% said that they will vote for former New York Senator Hillary Clinton, whereas 44.0% revealed that they would give their vote to real estate developer Donald Trump.
The poll was carried out between October 20 and October 26. The sample size was 702 likely voters. The sampling error is +/-3.6 percentage points, which means that the levels of voter support for the Republican and the Democratic candidate do not differ significantly.
Putting the results in context
As a general rule, however, don't have too much faith in the results of single polls, as they can incorporate large errors. Instead of relying on results from single polls, research in forecasting recommends to look at combined polls or, even better, the combined PollyVote forecast that uses different methods and data.
To make the results comparable to forecasts from benchmark methods, one can convert them into two-party vote shares. This procedure results in values of 53.2% for Clinton and 46.8% for Trump. To compare: Only 51.6% was gained by Clinton in the Quinnipiac poll on October 2, for Trump this result was 48.4%.
Results in comparison to other polls
If we look at an average of North Carolina polls, Clinton's current two-party vote share is at 51.6%. This value is 1.6 percentage points lower than her corresponding numbers in the Quinnipiac poll. This margin is within the poll's error margin, which suggests that the poll is not an outlier.
Results compared to the combined PollyVote prediction
The most recent PollyVote forecasts Clinton to gain 50.7% of the two-party vote in North Carolina. That is, Polly's forecast is 2.5 points below her polling numbers. The PollyVote forecast is therefore within the poll's error margin.