Donald Trump leads Hillary Clinton in North Carolina, new poll shows

Posted at 2:20 PM, Sep 08, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-08 14:20:00-04

WASHINGTON — Donald Trump holds a narrow edge over rival Hillary Clinton in North Carolina, according to a new poll, although nearly half of the state’s voters think the Democrat will win the presidency.

Those are among the findings in the latest poll from Suffolk University released Thursday. The survey found Trump with the support of 44 percent of likely North Carolina voters, a statistically insignificant three points better than Clinton’s 41 percent. Libertarian Party nominee Gary Johnson claimed only about 4 percent in the poll, though the most recent CNN/ORC national poll has his support pegged at 7 percent.

Forty-one percent of North Carolina voters said they have a favorable opinion of Trump, the Republican presidential nominee, while 49% said they have an unfavorable opinion. Only 37 percent of North Carolina voters said they have a favorable opinion of Clinton, while a majority — 55 percent — said they have an unfavorable opinion.

But when asked who is most likely to be elected president, 49 percent of the poll’s respondents gave the nod to the former secretary of state. Only 33 percent said Trump will win.

Clinton’s post-convention bump has dwindled as of late, with national polls showing an increasingly tight race. A CNN/ORC poll this week found Trump near even with Clinton among likely voters nationwide. But Clinton maintains an Electoral College firewall that appears to be far more resilient than Trump’s, according to state polling.

North Carolina, which 2012 GOP nominee Mitt Romney won four years ago and has been carried by Republicans in eight out of the last 10 presidential elections, appears to be a virtual tossup at this point. A CBS News poll released last weekend found Clinton leading Trump by four in the state.

The Suffolk University poll was conducted September 5-7 using phone interviews with 500 likely North Carolina voters. The margin of error is plus or minus 4.4 percentage points.