March 13, 2016
Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders are closely matched in Ohio, Illinois and Missouri, a new poll series from Public Policy Polling finds. These three states, along with Florida and North Carolina, hold their Democratic primaries on Tuesday. Clinton should easily win the latter two states.
The three competitive states are all open primary states. The poll found that Sanders is benefiting from the support of independents and Republicans planning to vote with the Democratic ballot. Sanders leads by 30-40 points in those groups, while Clinton leads by about 20 among Democrats. Overall, the poll found Clinton with a 5 point lead in Ohio and a 3 point lead in Illinois, with Sanders up by 1 in Missouri.
If these metrics are accurate, than the mix of voters (D vs. I vs. R) that actually cast their ballots will be crucial to determining whether Senator Senators can pull the upset in any or all of these states. Other recent polls in Ohio and Illinois have not seen the same thing. Looking at the 270toWin Polling Averages, Clinton leads by about 17 in Illinois, and 15 in Ohio. The PPP poll in Missouri is the first one with a significant sample size, so not much to go on there.