Michigan was one of the three states in 2016 that helped tip the election in favor of Donald Trump. It was the first time the union-heavy state had gone red since 1988, and the President’s margin of victory over Hillary Clinton was just 10,704 votes.
And so far it seems President Trump appears to be unlikely to thread that needle yet again. but it’s not impossible. He’s behind for now, but there’s still 99 days until the election. Let’s take a look at where the polls and potential decisions are for the Great Lake State.
This is part of a series from us here at DK Nation because DraftKings is offering $100,000 as part of a free fantasy sports Presidential election contest for those that can predict the winner of 11 states in the Presidential election. And don’t forget PredictIt has established markets for elections that allow you to earn some money while also providing research on elections.
Current Michigan presidential polling
The final highly-rated poll of Michigan as of November 1st:
A-: Emerson College: Biden 52%, Trump 46%.
All the polls of any quality whatsoever have Biden winning Michigan. We’ll see if it holds throughout the election.
There’s been a lack of quality in the polling of the Wolverine State, but even C-rated samples and below have Biden leading big: With the exception of a Trafalgar Group sample showing Trump up 1%, all polling the last two weeks shows Biden leading by between 6% and 11%.
A hot-off-the-press New York Times/Siena College poll, one of the gold standards in polling, has Joe Biden leading Donald Trump 48%-40% in Michigan. Half of the 614 likely voters sampled said they intend to vote in person on election day, and 92% said they absolutely had made up their mind, with 8% saying they could change their mind. If this data is correct... Michigan is for all intents and purposes over.
Michigan continues to seem out of reach to the President, who trails Joe Biden 48%-39% in a B/C-rated Glengariff poll taken between September 30th and October 3rd. According to the poll, “there has been a major shift among voters over the age of 65 towards Joe Biden. Older voters now support Biden over Trump by a margin of 59.1%-29.2% — a nearly 30-point lead for Joe Biden.”
An A+ rated Marist poll has Biden ahead 52-44% in a likely voter model, and a 52-43% lead in a registered voter model. It’s been a long time since the President has been ahead in Michigan in any credible poll, and the distance seems to only be increasing.
Of all the swing states Trump won in 2020, he might have the toughest battle in The Mitten. About 10 lower-rated polls taken in the last two weeks all show Biden leading by between 5% and 11% over the President. As one of the key states in the election for both parties, the Trump campaign will have to decide if continued investment in Michigan is worth it, or to seek out other greener pasture in search of electoral votes.
A Benenson Strategy Group/GS Strategy Group shows Vice President Biden continuing to hold a lead outside the margin of error across the mitten, with a 50%-43% lead amongst likely voters. Of those sampled, 44% had a favorable view of President Trump, while 54% were unfavorable.
In an interesting twist, when asked who they thought would win, 50% said Trump while only 47% said Biden. It shows the lack of confidence by Democratic-leaning voters in the state, and that’s partially due to the work of Benenson Strategy Group CEO Joel Benenson. He was a key member of Hillary Clinton’s failed campaign team in 2016.
This is the state Trump won last time that has most clearly shifted to Biden’s column. The Democrat leads in a Morning Consult poll of 1,455 likely voters 52%-42% as of this morning. There hasn’t been a single poll rated higher than “C” showing Trump ahead in Michigan since mid-July.
Joe Biden’s lead in the state has started to solidify a bit after the two political conventions. A poll from Morning Consult taken after the conventions shows Biden leading 52%-42%, ahead of the 50%-44% lead he had before they began in samples from the same company.
No context here, but Steve Schale of the Unite The Country PAC says they’ve got Biden leading 52-43 in Michigan. And that’s enough to have it scored a B-rated poll from FiveThirtyEight.com.
A YouGov survey released on August 10th shows Joe Biden ahead of Donald Trump 47%-43% in a state Trump narrowly won in 2016. The education gap is pretty clear in the polling data, where Trump leads with people that hold only a high school diploma or less 48%-42%, but trails Biden 55%-35% amongst those that have a college degree.
According to FiveThirtyEight.com, Joe Biden is ahead of Donald Trump as of now by 7.6%, 49.4% to 41.8%. 538 ranks the accuracy of each poll based on past performance, and the last “A” rated poll came from Fox News on July 23rd, which had Biden leading 49% to 40%.
YouGov also had a poll issued on July 26th which had Biden ahead 48%-42%, though that poll was “B” rated. In that sample, 57% of Michigan respondents said they were talking about the upcoming election “a lot” and 84% said they definitely will vote in November.
More useful data is at PredictIt, a site that allows a limited form of betting on elections in the United States via futures contracts. The site operates via an exemption in US law so political scientists and other academics can use the data in their research showing how the general public feels about an upcoming event or election. And as of now, it shows most traders using their real money think Michigan will go the way of the Democrats.
All futures contracts traded on the site are based on a $1.00 outcome, but they don’t always add up to a buck because of the bid-and-ask pricing on the exchange. For example on July 27th the Democrats led in Michigan .74 cents to .27 cents based on current trading.
Below is a running tally of the closing price at PredictIt. We will update this weekly through the summer, and then more regularly in the fall as we get closer to the election.
Michigan PredictIt Pricing
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