Suffolk University Michigan Poll Shows Clinton Leading Trump by 7 Points

72 Percent of Michigan likely voters see America as “great”

Democrat presidential nominee Hillary Clinton (44 percent) leads Republican Donald Trump (37 percent), in Michigan, according to a Suffolk University poll of likely voters in that state.

In a state that has voted for the Democratic presidential candidate in the past six cycles, Clinton led 84 percent to 6 percent among self-identified Democrats, with 4 percent undecided, while Trump led 70 percent to 10 percent among Republicans, with 14 percent undecided.

Trump carried the northern Michigan counties (56 percent to 28 percent) and mid-state (45 percent to 33 percent), while Clinton was ahead by a nearly 2-1 margin in the industrial southeast region (54 percent to 28 percent), a small area that makes up more than 40 percent of the state’s expected turnout.

“Michigan is a state that Barack Obama won by nine points,” said David Paleologos director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center in Boston. “Hillary Clinton, with a seven-point lead, appears strongest in the manufacturing base of a state that turned from Republican to Democratic after its auto industry began to decline in the 1980s.”

Libertarian presidential candidate Gary Johnson was the preference of 5 percent of voters; Green Party nominee Jill Stein, 3 percent; with 10 percent undecided. The Michigan ballot also includes Darrell Castle, U.S. Taxpayers Party, and Emidio “Mimi” Soltysik, Natural Law Party, but neither was able to muster 1 percent.

Among independents, Trump led Clinton 44 percent to 26 percent, with Johnson receiving 13 percent, Stein 5 percent, and 13 percent undecided.

Trump carried white voters 47 percent to 33 percent, while Clinton carried non-white voters 74 percent to 10 percent.

Gender and guns

Among men, Trump led 43 percent to 33 percent, while Clinton led 54 percent to 32 percent among women. However, there was a marked difference depending on whether or not men or women live in gun-owning households. Trump’s lead widened (48 percent to 26 percent) among men in gun-owner households, yet he trailed with 37 percent to Clinton’s 42 percent among men in non-gun-owner households. Clinton’s lead among women in non-gun-owner households was 62 percent to 24 percent, but the race was virtually even among women in gun-owner households, with Clinton leading 43 percent to 42 percent.

Voters see America as great

Despite Trump’s contrary implication, 72 percent of likely voters said they believe America is great, a finding evenly found among men and women and overwhelmingly supported by all regions, political parties, age groups and races.

Voters see both Clinton and Trump as untrustworthy, with 53 percent of voters lacking trust in Trump and 63 percent saying Clinton is untrustworthy.

Sixty-one percent of voters said this presidential election makes them feel alarmed, while 20 percent are excited, and 11 percent bored.

Overall, Michigan voters said that the number one issue facing the next president is jobs/economy (21 percent) followed closely by terrorism and national security (20 percent), choosing Supreme Court nominees (11 percent), health care (7 percent), and education and illegal immigration tied at 6 percent each. When voters were asked if they feel more or less safe living in America than they did five to 10 years ago, 50 percent said less safe, 11 percent more safe, and 37 percent indicated no change.


In the 2014 race for U.S. Senate in Michigan, the Suffolk poll showed Democrat Gary Peters leading Republican Terri Lynn Land by 9 points, 46 percent to 37 percent. Peters went on to win 55 percent to 41 percent.


The Michigan survey of 500 likely voters was conducted Aug. 22-24 using live telephone interviews of households where respondents indicated they were very or somewhat likely to vote in the 2016 general election. The margin of error is +/- 4.4 percentage points at a 95 percent level of confidence. Marginals and full cross-tabulation data are posted on the Suffolk University Political Research Center website. For more information, contact David Paleologos at 781-290-9310, [email protected].


Nancy Kelleher
[email protected]