Did opinion polls get US election result predictions wrong?

Joe Biden speaks during a campaign event with Kamala Harris

Joe Biden speaks during a campaign event with Kamala Harris - Credit: AP

Many polls gave Joe Biden a strong lead in the race for the White House but Election Night is giving a closer race than many expected. 

The Democratic nominee was thought to have a comfortable lead over the Republican incumbent. But close results in a number of swing states have made the path to the presidency unclear. 

A seven-day rolling average of polls suggested Biden was leading by 51% compared to Donald Trump’s 44% on Election Day, according to data from Real Clear Politics. 

The final numbers were not much changed from where they were on June 3, when there were three months to election day. 

In the early summer, Biden was polling at 49%, seven points higher than the president on 42%. 

You may also want to watch:

As of 4am (GMT) on Election Night, results had still not been declared in any of the swing states that were predicted to decide the election, all but one of which had predicted a Biden lead. 

Florida – which was expecting a +3 Biden lead according to the Real Clear Politics data – was suggesting a Trump lead. 

Most Read

The same was true in Georgia and North Carolina which were thought to have slim Biden majorities, and Ohio, which analysts had thrown up as tied in the polls. 

There were concerns that Pennsylvania (predicted +6 Biden) and Michigan and Wisconsin (both predicted +8 Biden) would not be declared for some time as election staff count votes submitted by post. 

Become a Supporter

The New European is proud of its journalism and we hope you are proud of it too. We believe our voice is important - both in representing the pro-EU perspective and also to help rebalance the right wing extremes of much of the UK national press. If you value what we are doing, you can help us by making a contribution to the cost of our journalism.

Become a Supporter
Comments powered by Disqus