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Photos: Left: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images; Right: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Joe Biden leads President Trump in Michigan 53% to 41%, doubling his lead over the incumbent since January, according to a poll of 600 likely Michigan voters conducted by EPIC-MRA for the Detroit Free Press.

Why it matters: Michigan, which Trump won by more than 10,000 votes in 2016, is considered an important battleground state in the upcoming election.

  • In an earlier EPIC-MRA survey conducted in January, Michigan voters favored Biden over Trump 50% to 44%.
  • Since that poll, the state has been hit hard by the coronavirus and the subsequent economic disruption.

By the numbers: Of those surveyed, 43% identified as Democrats and 38% as Republicans.

  • Independent voters in the state are backing Biden over Trump, 63% to 23%.
  • 63% said the country is heading in the wrong direction, up from 50% in January.
  • 41% of voters approved of Trump's handling of the pandemic, while 58% disapproved.

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D), a potential Biden VP pick who has repeatedly been attacked by Trump during the coronavirus crisis, has an approval rating of 55% positive and 43% negative, up from 43%-50% in January.

  • 60% commended her handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

Methodology: EPIC-MRA surveyed 600 Michigan voters by telephone between May 30 and Wednesday. The margin of error is ±4 percentage points. The sample used was 40% cellphone users.

Go deeper

Mike Allen, author of AM
Sep 14, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Biden spending alarms Trump allies

A scene from a Biden ad series aimed at Black Americans, "Shop Talk," announced today. Image: Biden for President

Joe Biden's mammoth $364 million August fundraising haul is leading to tens of millions worth of ads in battleground states.

The big picture: “It should be an alarm to every Republican donor that they’ve got to dig deep and give more,” Club for Growth head David McIntosh told AP.

Over 170 environmental leaders urge supporters not to vote for Green Party

People protesting against the global climate crisis on September 20, 2019 in New York City. Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

More than 170 of the world's most esteemed environmental activists signed on to an open letter on Monday urging their supporters to vote for Joe Biden rather than vote for the Green Party or sit out the election, The Daily Beast reports.

The big picture: The group says "progressives who vote for the Green Party candidate, or write in Henry David Thoreau, or refuse to vote at all" will help win the election for Trump, whom they excoriated for his "unprecedented malignancy, fear mongering, pathological lying, and atrocious policymaking."

Updated 1 hour ago - World

Over 3,000 detained in protests across Russia demanding Navalny's release

Russian police officers beat protestesters at a rally against of jailing of oppositon leader Alexei Navalny in Moscow on Saturday. Photo: Mikhail Svetlov/Getty Images

Police in Russia on Saturday arrested more than 3,300 people as protesters nationwide demanded that opposition leader Alexey Navalny be released from jail.

Details: Demonstrations began in the eastern regions of Russia and spread west to more than 60 cities.