Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden was reported to be leading President Donald Trump in three of four battleground states, according to a new poll of likely voters in Michigan, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Wisconsin, with Trump leading in Ohio, as of Friday.
Pennsylvania is expected to be the most crucial swing state. Both the Democratic and Republican parties view the state, which has 20 electoral college votes, as a key component of the 270 votes needed to win the election, according to strategists from both parties.
"It's pretty clear 25 days out that Pennsylvania will be the tipping point state," said Bradley Beychok, the president of American Bridge, a pro-Democratic group that reportedly spent millions to support the former vice president, told The Washington Post.
The group was reported to be reallocating from Michigan and Wisconsin. "We have moved most of our budget into Pennsylvania," Beychok noted.
The latest Baldwin Wallace University Great Lakes poll, conducted online between September 30 and October 8, included responses from around 900 to 1,200 likely voters in each of the four swing states, according to a report of the results published on October 9.
More respondents said they would vote for Biden than Trump in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin if the election was held at the time of the poll. Those who had already voted were asked to indicate which candidate they voted for.
Biden led Trump in Michigan (supported by 50.2 percent of respondents), Pennsylvania (49.6 percent) and Wisconsin (49.2 percent). Trump trailed behind the former vice president in all three states, with 43.2 percent in Michigan, 44.5 percent in Pennsylvania and 42.5 percent in Wisconsin.
Trump showed a lead over Biden in Ohio, where 47 percent of the respondents said they would vote for or have voted for the president, while 45.4 percent indicated they supported Biden.
The respondents were questioned about several topics including the presidential debate that took place in Cleveland, Ohio on September 29, transition of power, public figure approval and election policy.
Among those who watched the presidential debate, around 35 to 40 percent of respondents in each state indicated the debate made them less likely to vote for Trump, while around 40 percent were unsure, according to the poll.
The poll also showed Biden had a higher level of public figure approval than Trump, with around 46 to 51 percent of respondents in each state indicating they had a favorable opinion of the former vice president. Around 42 to 44 percent in each had a favorable opinion of Trump.
The survey also asked respondents about several other issues including the recent news of Trump's federal tax returns and the U.S. Supreme Court Justice vacancy following the recent death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
The latest poll, funded by the Baldwin Wallace University Community Research Institute in Ohio, Oakland University in Michigan and Ohio Northern University, was conducted among 1,134 likely voters in Michigan, 1,009 in Ohio, 1,140 in Pennsylvania and 883 in Wisconsin.
"Responses in this survey were weighted by gender, race/ethnicity, annual household income and education to be representative of each state's population," the report of the poll results stated.
The overall margins of error for each state were plus or minus 3.2 percent in Michigan, plus or minus 3.1 percent in Ohio, plus or minus 3.1 percent in Pennsylvania, plus or minus 3.4 percent in Wisconsin, while the overall margin of error was plus or minus 3.1 percent.
"The sample size and margin of error are applicable only to overall results," while poll results referring to questions asked only to subgroups of respondents "necessarily have a higher margin of error," the report noted.
Earlier this week, Biden was reported to have a 12-point lead over Trump among registered voters in Pennsylvania and anywhere from an eight-point to 11-point lead among likely voters, according a telephone poll conducted by New Jersey's Monmouth University Polling Institute from September 30 to October 4 with 500 Pennsylvania registered voters.
"Overall, 52 percent of Pennsylvania voters trust Biden more to handle the coronavirus pandemic and just 32 percent give the edge to Trump on this issue," according to a report of the poll results published Tuesday.