Final Electoral Math -- My 2020 Picks

[ Posted Monday, November 2nd, 2020 – 18:55 UTC ]

Here we are, the end of a very long and exhausting road. Election Day is tomorrow. But 100 million Americans may have already voted before Tuesday even dawns. Voting in the time of COVID-19 has been just as different as everything else we've been living through.

One general comment before we begin. This year has seen a "get out the vote" effort that absolutely dwarfs anything seen previously. Americans have been reminded not just to vote but to have a plan for voting for months now, and from some very unusual sources. A few days ago, I actually saw a public service "Go vote!" television ad featuring Cheech and Chong. Younger readers may not comprehend just how mindbendingly weird this is. A more up-to-date reference (although still somewhat dated, these days) would be how jarring it would be to see a "Go vote!" P.S.A. from Beavis and Butthead. Cheech and Chong -- while both blatantly smoking joints -- do a short little pro-vote comedy routine using their signature stoner humor. I never thought I would see such a thing in a million years, and yet this year it's barely even noticed. That's how strange this election has been.

Turnout is quite likely going to break all records set for the last century. We may have to go back to 1876 to find a higher percentage of eligible voters actually casting ballots. While this is a good thing for participatory democracy, it also means that somewhere in the neighborhood of 20 million people are going to vote this year who either didn't vote last time around or have never voted at all. And that's a big enough margin to throw the election one way or the other. President Donald Trump is convinced he'll turn out enough rural new voters to win all the battleground states, but Joe Biden may win more of these new voters. Here's a short rundown of some recent polling on the issue:

Given the unprecedented turnout we've seen in early voting, the question is who is expanding the electorate. And these new polls are the latest data to suggest that it's more [Joe] Biden than [Donald] Trump.

According to the Times-Siena polls, voters who didn't cast ballots in 2016 but plan to (or already have) this time favor Biden by seven points in Arizona, 12 points in Pennsylvania, 17 points in Florida and 19 points in Wisconsin. And, to be clear, these are sizable chunks of voters: about 1 in every 5 voters in the first three states and 11 percent of all voters in Wisconsin.

And lest Democrats worry that these voters might not actually turn out, given they didn't do so in 2016: Two-thirds of them say they have already voted in Arizona and Florida, while 56 percent say the same in Wisconsin. (The number is lower -- 36 percent -- in Pennsylvania.) These are not just votes that Democrats hope to add; in most cases, these are votes they already have.

The polls come on top of data collected by TargetSmart that has already shown that voters who haven't previously cast ballots but did so early this time tilt toward Biden by similar margins. If Biden's edge in new voters holds, he wins.

We'll have to see if that proves to be true, tomorrow night. But it's a good sign for Biden.

Since this is the final column of the Electoral Math series, I will not be hedging any picks today, but instead calling every state for one candidate or the other. But before we get to my predictions, for the sake of completeness, let's take a very quick look at the final charts for the 2020 race. First, the overall total for Electoral Votes (EV) for both candidates.

Electoral Math By Percent

[Click on any of theses graphs to see larger-scale versions.]

If everything works out the way the polling now stands (if the polls prove accurate), then Joe Biden will win 368 EV, or over 68 percent of the total. Donald Trump will only win 170 EV, or only 32 percent of the total. This is worse than 2-to-1, it's worth pointing out.

Here are each candidate's final charts showing the breakdown of relative strength, beginning with Joe Biden:

Biden Electoral Math

Biden finishes with 233 EV in the Strong category, 40 EV in Weak, and 95 EV in Barely. A quick rundown of the last week's movement: Biden's numbers wobbled in Michigan, moving from Weak to Strong and then back again. Biden fell from Weak to Barely in Nevada, in one last-minute poll. Biden lost two states from Barely over to Trump's Barely, Texas and Iowa. But Biden flipped both Ohio and Florida from Barely Trump to his own Barely column.

As always, the Strong Plus Weak line is the most important, and it finishes just over the total Biden will need, at 273 EV. Here is how Biden's Strong Plus Weak line measures up against the past three Democratic candidates:

Democrats Strong/Weak

Biden finishes in better shape than Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama's 2012 run, but behind where Obama stood in 2008. What is remarkable about Biden's line, though, is how steady it has held -- above the 270 threshold, for the most part -- during the entire campaign. There haven't been a whole lot of ups and downs, in other words.

Now let's take a look at Donald Trump's charts.

Trump Electoral Math

Trump winds up with 73 EV in Strong, 53 EV in Weak, and 44 EV in Barely. During the week, Trump wobbled from Weak to Barely in Montana, but one day later returned to Weak. The first poll from Wyoming appeared, which (as predicted) showed Strong Trump numbers. Trump lost both Ohio and Georgia from Barely to Biden's Barely, but gained Texas and Iowa in the other direction.

So let's take a look at Trump's Strong Plus Weak (which finished at 126 EV), compared to the last three Republicans to run for president.

Republicans Strong/Weak

Trump's line finishes where it has stuck for almost the entire campaign -- below everyone else's lines. He's doing worse that he was at this point in 2016, by 26 EV. And he's doing far worse than Mitt Romney's 191 EV.

Putting all of this together brings a very clear picture: Joe Biden is heavily favored to win this race, and Donald Trump will have to pull off a bigger upset than the historic one he managed four years ago to win. So let's move right along to guessing which states will wind up in each candidate's column tomorrow night (or Wednesday... or maybe next Tuesday...).


My Picks

Last time around, my picks were woefully wrong. I fully admit that up front. But then again, so were most people's picks. Small comfort, after the past four years.

This year I resolved not to be too haunted by the ghosts from the past. The 2020 election is just not the same as the 2016 election, for many reasons. In fact, the only real similarity is that Donald Trump ran in both.

Joe Biden was sold to the Democratic base as a safe choice. Joe would be a non-scary candidate for all of those swing voters out there, and he would not appear too radical to those who worry about the Democratic Party moving too far left. Biden would be a return to normalcy, but I think more important Biden represents a return to being able to be bored with politics. He could be the most boring president since Dwight D. Eisenhower's 1950s, in fact. Which seems to be exactly what the electorate is looking for, right now.

This approach largely seems to have paid off. Biden is competitive with groups of voters who might not have gone for some of the other, more-radical candidates who ran (like Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren). He's a guy, so misogyny is not a factor at all. Nobody hates Biden in the same way that many hated Hillary Clinton, to put this another way.

Donald Trump could have been a lot more competitive, but in order to do so he would have had to completely change his basic character. He could have empathized with Americans suffering (and dying) from the pandemic. He could have shown real leadership instead of insisting that the buck stopped anywhere but on his desk. He could have run a campaign which reached out to all those voters who hadn't voted for him last time. And he probably would have been in a lot better shape right now if he had done any of these things. But, being Donald Trump, he was incapable of doing so. He let his inner Trump out, and it was just as ugly and mean-spirited as it always has been. And he has paid for it, with the voters.

This is such a unique election that nobody really has any idea how it will all turn out. The unprecedented amount of early voting, the surge in turnout numbers, the blatant attempts at voter suppression (most of which were exposed very early on), the number of lawsuits attempting not just voter suppression, but actual suppression of ballots cast, a president who has continually cast doubt on the entire election process, and even the threats of violence at the polls on Election Day are all either new concepts or have been pushed harder than ever before. Nobody's even sure if Trump will admit defeat, at this point, which is a very dangerous place for the country to be.

All of this makes predicting the outcome a real shot in the dark. Nobody is putting as much faith in the polling as we all normally used to, for very obvious reasons. But we've got to start somewhere and start throwing darts at the map. So let's begin by picking all the states that are almost certain for the two candidates.


Safe Biden States -- 23 States -- 259 Electoral Votes
California (55), Colorado (9), Connecticut (7), Delaware (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (20), Maine (4), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (11), Michigan (16), Minnesota (10), New Hampshire (4), New Jersey (14), New Mexico (5), Nevada (6), New York (29), Oregon (7), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3), Virginia (13), Washington D.C. (3), Washington (12), Wisconsin (10)

Safe Trump States -- 20 States -- 126 Electoral Votes
Alabama (9), Alaska (3), Arkansas (6), Idaho (4), Indiana (11), Kansas (6), Kentucky (8), Louisiana (8), Mississippi (6), Missouri (10), Montana (3), Nebraska (5), North Dakota (3), Oklahoma (7), South Carolina (9), South Dakota (3), Tennessee (11), Utah (6), West Virginia (5), Wyoming (3)

Trump's list isn't really all that debatable. There is that odd district in Nebraska that may go for Biden, but I'm not paying attention to either it or the odd district in Maine that may go for Trump. I think they'll cancel each other out, personally.

Some of the states on Biden's list may raise some eyebrows, however. Four in particular: Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, and Wisconsin. Many pundits have listed these as tossup states, but I don't really consider any of them to be within reach of Trump. Nevada is the only one with any close polling, but Nevada is always notoriously hard to accurately poll. I think it will be comfortably in Biden's column when the votes are counted.

The other three are on everyone else's battleground lists, but to me they have all drifted solidly into Biden's column. Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin will rebuild the blue wall in 2020. Polls in all three have shown a solid and steady Biden lead for over a month, and I can't see that changing tomorrow. So while others may fret about these Great Lakes states, I am confident that all three will end up solid blue.

In fact, I only have eight states remaining in my battleground list. Before we get to them, however, let's take a look at how my safe states map out. Note that these maps are from the wonderful site 270ToWin, and if you click that link it should take you to the very map you see below (where you can fill in your own picks for the battlegrounds).

My Electoral Map

As you can see, Joe Biden only needs 11 EV to win, while Trump needs a whopping 144 EV to reach the magic 270 number.

How would I fill in the rest of the map? Well, let's take a look, state by state. The list is in alphabetical order, for no real reason. As always, the numbers in parenthesis are the total EV for each state. And as I said, while others might add Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, and Wisconsin to this list, I consider them all safe enough for Biden.


Close States

Arizona (11)
Since I'm listing these in alphabetic order, we're going to start with one of my least-confident predictions. In fact, even after I set the rest of the map, I still kept flipping Arizona back and forth. Biden has shown a decent lead in the polls here for a while, but this lead has seemed to shrink over the past few weeks. Biden does have a lot in his favor here -- the Democrats are quite likely to unseat an incumbent Republican senator, none other than Cindy McCain is actually campaigning for Biden, and Biden seems to be doing well in the all-important Maricopa County. So I have no real idea why Trump seems to be benefitting from a late-breaking surge here -- especially since it seems like this is the only state where it is showing up. Perhaps his rallies boosted his base? But for whatever reason, late-breaking polling shifts are almost always correct, so I'm going to have to predict Arizona will go for Trump. I still think Democrats will pick up the Senate seat (making Martha McSally responsible for losing both Arizona Senate seats for the Republicans), but in the end I think Arizona will stay red on the presidential map.

Florida (29)
This alphabetical order has strangely meant that we're starting out here fairly pessimistically for Joe Biden. While Florida would secure an Electoral College victory if Biden wins it, I'm going to predict that Florida once again disappoints Democrats in the end. I'm basing this call more on gut feeling than numbers. Consider that even during the blue wave of the 2018 midterms, Republicans edged out tiny victories in the two important races here (Senate and governor). Florida has also seem some rather lackluster turnout for the Democrats in early voting, among several important demographics. In the last week, Biden has held a very small lead in most polls, but this lead has shrunk in the closing days. So I'm adding what could be a late-breaking polling surge for Trump to the state's historic ability to disappoint Democrats and calling Florida for Trump. I'd love to be proven wrong about this one, but I'm going to have to go with Trump raking in Florida's 29 Electoral College votes.

Georgia (16)
Here is where we turn to some Biden optimism. I think all the groundwork done by Stacey Abrams over the past three years is going to finally pay off in Georgia. Abrams got noticed nationally for her very close loss in the governor's race, but that didn't just magically happen out of thin air. She spent a lot of time and a lot of money in a massive voter registration drive with the goal of signing up a million new Georgia voters -- most of them people of color. Her monumental efforts are finally going to pay off, as Georgia narrowly goes for Biden. It won't be just Black voters that put Biden over the top, it will also be White suburban women who are just fed up with all of Trump's antics. Georgia going for Biden will shock a lot of people (as it should, since it's been such a reliable Republican state), but what may be the biggest shock is that if Georgia reports its results Tuesday night, it could be the real "tipping point" state for Biden. If Biden wins Georgia, Pennsylvania will not matter, to put this another way. Trump's single path to 270 EV is so narrow that if he loses Georgia, the path disappears entirely. So Georgia could be the surprising state that puts Biden over the top, very early on.

Iowa (6)
Iowa has polled extremely closely during the entire election, but one of the most-trusted pollsters in the state released a last-minute poll showing Trump up by 7 points. This is much higher a lead than any of the other recent polls have shown, but this particular pollster did pretty accurately predict Trump's victory here last time. Other polls have put the race a whole lot closer, though. But I'm going to bow to conventional wisdom here and agree that Trump wins the state. Iowa, it should be noted, is the least important of all the battleground states, being the smallest in population (only 6 EV, while the others are all double digits). This means that even if Biden did pick up a surprise win in Iowa, it wouldn't be enough to put him over the top.

North Carolina (15)
The same thing I said about Georgia could also be said for North Carolina as well. If the state goes for Biden early on Tuesday, then the race is going to be over. And I'm predicting Biden will win here as well, so it really could be either North Carolina or Georgia that proves to be the real tipping point state. North Carolina has polled very close for the entire election, falling in the "statistical tie" zone for almost the whole race. But over the past month Biden has held a small but persistent edge over Trump, and I'm betting that that will prove to be the case tomorrow night. Once again, if either North Carolina or Georgia goes for Biden, then Pennsylvania will not matter -- which might just be the biggest surprise of the night.

Ohio (18)
Ohio is another state that has spent most of the election essentially tied. An argument could be made that if Pennsylvania and Michigan go for Biden, then Ohio should be expected to as well (due to similar demographics in all three states). But Ohio has been trending redder for the past decade or so, and I think the built-in advantage Republicans seem to have here is going to win the day for Trump. I'd really love to see Ohio go for Biden this time around, but somehow I just don't believe it will happen.

Pennsylvania (20)
Pennsylvania has gotten more attention -- from both the candidates and from the media -- than any other state, this election cycle (especially in the closing days of the race). There's a reason for this. If Trump manages to hold on in the "Sun Belt" states (Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Texas, and Arizona) and wins Ohio and Iowa (as he did in 2016), while Biden picks up Michigan and Wisconsin and holds onto Minnesota, then both candidates will be perfectly tied at 259 EV each. Pennsylvania has the remaining 20 EV, which could indeed mean it might be the crucial, deciding state. That's why both Biden and Trump (and all of their surrogates) have blanketed the state in the past few weeks. Personally, though, I just don't believe this will happen, for two reasons. The first is I consider that 259 tie highly unlikely -- I just don't think Trump will do all that well everywhere else. The second is that I consider Pennsylvania a pretty easy pickup for Joe Biden. He's been leading the polling by 5 points or more for the past two months. This lead has been persistent and steady the whole time. Biden is polling at or very near 50 percent, which is another indicator of success. Plus, we may have to wait for a few days to find out who won Pennsylvania, and by the time they do announce their totals I think it'll wind up being no more than a footnote -- just increasing the margin of Biden's victory. But in the end, I do think the Keystone State will go for Biden. In fact, I will further predict that Biden wins Pennsylvania by a bigger margin than any of the other battleground states I've listed.

Texas (38)
The alphabet has saved the most shocking prediction I'm going to make for last. Because although I handed Florida to Trump, I think that Joe Biden is going to finally achieve the Democratic dream of turning Texas blue on the presidential map. I realize that this is a pretty bold and risky prediction to make, but I'm going to make it nonetheless. The most shocking news of the 2020 election is going to be that Texas votes for the Democrat. I'm basing this on a few factors, starting with the fact that the polling has been neck-and-neck all along -- which in and of itself is a shocking thing. Texas was always supposed to be reliably red for Trump, but it has not proven to be. Secondly, the early vote in Texas has already surpassed the total 2016 vote, which is downright astonishing. In a state where early and/or mail-in voting are accepted and normal, this would not be news. In Texas, where the state Republicans make it as hard as possible to vote early (indeed, they're arguing in federal court today to throw out over 100,000 legally-cast ballots), this is enormous news. And thirdly, the youth vote numbers seem to be through the roof. I think all of this adds up to a result that used to be considered unthinkable -- Texas will wind up in Joe Biden's column tomorrow night.


My Electoral College Prediction

When you total it all up, here's what you get:

Joe Biden -- 348 Electoral Votes

Donald Trump -- 190 Electoral Votes

And here are all my picks on my final map for the 2020 election (you can adjust this map with your own picks at 270ToWin if you'd like).

My Electoral Map

Which brings our quadrennial Electoral Math series to a close. Disagree with my picks (especially Texas)? Let me know in the comments. Use the links to manipulate the maps yourselves, to easily see what the final total will be.

Of course, getting any or all of this wrong is always an option. The Democratic motto for this election year has to be: "Once bitten, twice shy." Nobody is going to prematurely pop the champagne corks this time around, in other words. If Biden wins, there could be anything from dancing in the streets to widespread riots. If Trump wins, there will likely only be riots. Either way, tomorrow's going to be a heck of a rollercoaster ride, so buckle up!

And, of course, if you haven't already done so, don't forget to go cast your own vote tomorrow. For once, the overused warning is actually real: this is the most important election of your lifetime. So go vote!


Polling data gaps:

Polled, but no recent polling data -- 7 States
(States which have not been polled since the end of September, with the dates of their last poll in parenthesis.) Note that only North Dakota and Tennessee are extremely out of date.

Delaware (9/27), Illinois (9/26), New York (9/29), North Dakota (3/5), Oregon (9/29), Tennessee (5/22), Vermont (9/15)

No polling data at all, yet -- 5 States
(States which have not been polled so far this year.)

Idaho, Louisiana, Nebraska, Rhode Island, Washington D.C.

-- Chris Weigant


Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant


50 Comments on “Final Electoral Math -- My 2020 Picks”

  1. [1] 
    John M from Ct. wrote:

    Nice to see a commitment on states that have been on the edge, or close to it, for many weeks now. My gut would have switched Florida with Texas - Fl for Uncle Joe, Tx for Uncle Fester - but I admit my gut is not that professional. In either case, I agree with you that Biden looks like a solid winner.

    But as several commentators have noted, Joe is running a double race. Along with trying to actually win, he has to virtually win. That is, he needs to have early and solid leads in the states that will cause the media to give him the nod on Tuesday night. If he can't pull that together, the president's predictable "Stop counting! I've won!" will have some legs, and who knows what will happen next, even if Joe's totals trickle in to the 350-190 numbers later in the week.

    By the way, I am curious why you invoke the 270ToWin site in this post, when for the past few weeks you have been drawing on Electoral Vote dot com for your projections.

  2. [2] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    John, Chris is still using I think - he's just using the 270 map because it's so easy to have a little fun with as you make your own projections on who will win what state and how the magic 270 is reached, or not.

  3. [3] 
    chaszzzbrown wrote:

    The only place my gut disagrees is with AZ - it says that Mark Kelly will have enough coat-tails to pull Joe over the line there.

  4. [4] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    A couple of late evening predictions, if I may ... election day will be as peaceful as any other presidential election, there'll be long lines with no intimidation, and there will be a projected winner by midnight - by some enitity other than Trump and Co. - or shortly thereafter on Wednesday, my day off. But, I did book Thursday off, too, just in case. :)

  5. [5] 
    Kick wrote:

    First Election Returns

    Former Vice President Joe Biden took all five of the votes cast for president in Dixville Notch, a tiny New Hampshire township along the US-Canada border that is among the first places in the country to make its presidential preference known.

  6. [6] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    And, then he lost to Trump 16-5 in a nearby notch er, field. :(

  7. [7] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    So, overall, it's 16-10 for Trump. Hmmmm ...

  8. [8] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    A question, can the other eligible voters in Dixville Notch still vote if they wish or did they mail in their votes which still haven't been delivered? Heh. Sorry, I kid the Notch. :)

  9. [9] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    Don't anyone tell Trump about this.

  10. [10] 
    Elizabeth Miller wrote:

    He's still going strong, by the way, just before 1am. Humph.

  11. [11] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    Just one bottle of beer on the wall. I shined up my grave dancing shoes this evening.

  12. [12] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    John M from Ct. [1] -

    I guess I forgot to credit this time. I've always gotten my data from them, but I like the maps on 270ToWin, mostly because you can download them as a file. Most other sites that let you play around with the electoral map don't.

    chaszzzbrown [3] -

    I almost mentioned the "reverse coattail" effect, both for AZ and for NC (I think it'll help Biden there, too). But I forgot, in the end. Good point, though -- it's a strange thing for a Senate candidate to help the top of the ticket instead of the other way 'round...

    Kick [5] -

    Dixville Notch is down to only 5 voters? I remember they used to at least be in the teens... thanks I'll check the link out!



  13. [13] 
    Kick wrote:

    Spoiler Alert

    Joe Biden will win New Hampshire. That's not the spoiler alert.

    One of the voters in Dixville Notch was a lifelong Republican. That's not the spoiler.

    I've crunched enough data to know that's it's safe to say we'll be hearing about a lot of Republicans voting for Joe Biden. :)

  14. [14] 
    Kick wrote:

    CW: He's a guy, so misogyny is not a factor at all.

    Example of a sentence that must be read in context.

    I can't sleep... just in case anyone was wondering. ;)

  15. [15] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    I agree with you Chris all the way down to the battleground states but there we part company. When it comes to these states, it isn't polling that's the most important indicator, it's election cheating.

    The indications are strong that republicans cheat in Pennsylvania (via voting machines and tabulators without paper trails but with state laws that prevent these machines ever being forensically investigated so tampering is immune to detection), North Carolina, Georgia, Florida (it's rampant in this state and the only way republicans can win the governorship and keep senators) and some parts of Texas. Given that Karl Rove and Roger Stone are likely to be the ones in charge of the ratf*^king, all these states may go to Trump.

    There's also plenty of anecdotal evidence that cheating in Wisconsin is via tabulators but likely only in a few places and it may not be enough this time round to stop Biden from winning. (It wasn't enough to stop the governorship going to a Democrat and that's a good sign.)

    Republican cheaters have been caught in North Carolina and charged with fraud. That only affected one race in 2018 (and their corrupt republican legislature stepped in to make sure the do-over race favoured the replacement republican when they should have kept their beaks out of the whole situation). The first complaint about this fraud was made in 2016 but ignored by the then GOP-majority State Election Commission. The Dem-majority Election Commission investigated in 2018.

    Fraud has also been found in the ranks of the state's GOP leadership and more people have been charged there too.

    Georgia's penchant for cheating became the basis for a court case back in 2017. Just days after the suit was filed, the computer server central to the 2016 election was quietly wiped clean by its custodians. When the judge in the case ordered that back-up data on a university computer be downloaded and brought to court, that computer also was mysteriously wiped clean.

    Stacey Abrams, without directly calling out former State SoS Brian Kemp, has also subtly implied that Georgia is beset with electoral fraud.

    Because these fraud schemes are perpetrated via voting machines and tabulators, Trump and his GOP cronies are terrified that mail-in paper ballots will vastly outnumber electronic votes and therefore not be subject to their fraud schemes. Enter DeJoy to sabotage the USPS.

    I'm hoping their cheating schemes won't work for them this year. It's obvious Trump is worried enough to want McConnell to rush through Barrett's confirmation to SCOTUS in case he needs the Supreme Court to decide the winner.

    If he's losing Tuesday night and Wednesday, Trump will not leave it there. He and his co-conspirators have already plotted out the moves they intend to make. I don't know what's going to happen but I'll be watching for it and hoping hard GOP dirty tricks fail them this time.

  16. [16] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    Elizabeth Miller [6] and [9]

    Good heavens no! Don't anyone tell Trump or he'll declare himself the winner already while he's in front!

  17. [17] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    Elizabeth Miller [4]

    I hope your prediction is right to the extent that election day is largely peaceful. I am concerned that there will be aggressive harassment of voters in some places by worked-up trumpers.

    I wasn't concerned until I read about the harassment of the Biden-Harris bus in Texas and the attempt there to run it off the road. That was followed by trumpers blocking traffic on major highways in New York and New Jersey and a 95-mile blockade in Nevada.

    There's organisation in the background and it's being fuelled by Trump encouraging this bullying lawlessness.

  18. [18] 
    chaszzzbrown wrote:

    [5] Kick

    Breaking News: Trump Campaign demands recount of Dixville Notch results, claiming massive voter fraud.

  19. [19] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    What about predictions re senators? I'll offer mine.

    In a free and fair election...

    Arizona: Mark Kelley beats out Martha McSally easily and Arizona goes to Biden on Kelley's coattails.

    Colorado: Popular 2-term governor John Hickenlooper takes out Cory Gardner.

    Georgia John Ossoff beats David Perdue after annihilating him in a recent debate.

    Georgia Rev Raphael Warnock makes it to the run-off with Kelly Loeffler.

    Iowa Theresa Greenville picks up Joni Ernst's seat.

    Kansas Former republican state senator and now passionate Democrat Barbara Bollier will beat out Roger Marshall in this open seat.

    Maine Sara Gideon had this won as soon as she declared. Susan Collins has made too many glaring mistakes and Mainers have had enough of her.

    Mississippi Mike Espy has out-campaigned the lacklustre Cindy Hyde-Smith who refused to debate him because she knew she'd come off the worse and everyone else knows it too.

    Montana Another popular 2-term governor, and current governor, Steve Bullock will beat out Steve Daines. Bullock has a proven ability to reach across the aisle that Daines does not have. Also Montanans don't want to lose the ACA or the expanded Medicaid Bullock gave them. In a state hard hit with Covid19, the health issue will win out (and might even give Biden the edge).

    North Carolina Cal Cunningham is one of those candidates with "winner" written all over him while Thom Tillis resembles a damp dishrag. I think Cunningham has got this.

    South Carolina I've never before seen a person so desperate to lose their seat as Lindsay Graham. I think his losing tactics will work for him and Jaime Harrison will pick up this seat.

    Texas This will be a nail-biter but I think Mary J Hegar will edge out a gaff-ridden John Cornyn.

    Also in the plus column, I think we have a good chance of retaining Doug Collins in Alabama - he's likeable and they like him!

    Democrats currently have 46 seats in the US Senate. If we hold Alabama and win 11, that will put us on 57. I think Warnock can beat out Loeffler which would give us 58. Add in the two Independents and the Left side can make the magic 60 figure.

    I'm also confident Democrats will increase their majority in the US House. With Biden safely in the White House, I believe Nancy Pelosi will pass on the gavel and retire at the end of her next term. I think Adam Schiff will be favourite to become the next Speaker of the House.

  20. [20] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    In response to [18] chaszzzbrown

    I wish I could use emojis because I'd have all the grinning and laughing ones in a row in response to this breaking news!

  21. [21] 
    Kick wrote:


    Breaking News: Trump Campaign demands recount of Dixville Notch results, claiming massive voter fraud.

    Heh... and then Hair Dick Tater tweets out:

    50,000 ballots located in Notch: Trump declared King of Dicksville!

    Yes, I need sleep. :)

  22. [22] 
    Kick wrote:


    You have Democrats winning every competitive seat in the Senate. Are you eating or smoking that weed? ;)

    I think Adam Schiff will be favourite to become the next Speaker of the House.

    It's common knowledge that Pelosi has been grooming Schiff for multiple years now. :)

  23. [23] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    In response to Kick [22]

    Instead of being insulting, if you don't like my list, let's see yours.

  24. [24] 
    Kick wrote:


    Instead of being insulting, if you don't like my list, let's see yours.

    I said nothing about "not liking" your "list." I did, however, note that you've called every single competitive race in the Senate in favor of the Democratic candidate and then winked and asked you a question. :)

    So what are you consuming?

    * Baked weed
    * Rolled weed
    * Kool-Aid

    That, incidentally, was my list. ;)

  25. [25] 
    Bleyd wrote:

    My friend is among those over 127k votes that republicans are trying to negate in Texas. The most recent I've heard is that courts have rejected the attempt, but who knows how it'll turn out. I honestly don't know how my friend voted as I've never talked politics with him, but I really hope he gets his vote counted, regardless of who it goes to.

  26. [26] 
    Kick wrote:


    Mike Espy in Mississippi? Highly unlikely.

    Montana: Bullock? I hope so... but I'm a skeptic.

    In a state hard hit with Covid19, the health issue will win out (and might even give Biden the edge).

    Biden having an edge in Montana? Montana? :)

    South Carolina: Jaime Harrison... I wish... but demographically unlikely.

    Texas: Hegar a nail-biter? Boy do I wish. We are stuck with Cornyn for another six years (I'm a Texan).

    Alabama: Also in the plus column, I think we have a good chance of retaining Doug Collins

    Doug Collins is running in the Georgia special election so he's not likely to win in Alabama... and neither is Doug Jones who actually is running in Alabama.

    Democrats currently have 46 seats in the US Senate.

    Nope. They have 45 plus 2 Independents who caucus with them for a total of 47.

    If we hold Alabama and win 11, that will put us on 57.

    Alabama? Alabama? :)

    I think Warnock can beat out Loeffler which would give us 58.

    Your numbers are off... also 58!

    Add in the two Independents and the Left side can make the magic 60 figure.

    Democrats have 45 seats in the Senate plus 2 Independents that caucus with them for a total of 47 seats at the current time. Hold Alabama? What are you smoking? Make the magic 60 figure? It must be some really good weed. ;)

  27. [27] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    She does seem just a little clueless about the Neanderthals in Alabama and Mississippi. In addition, she used an awful lot of words to say the Dems are going to win everything. I suspect something other than weed.

  28. [28] 
    Kick wrote:


    My friend is among those over 127k votes that republicans are trying to negate in Texas. The most recent I've heard is that courts have rejected the attempt, but who knows how it'll turn out. I honestly don't know how my friend voted as I've never talked politics with him, but I really hope he gets his vote counted, regardless of who it goes to.

    It'll be counted. The Texas Supreme Court denied it twice, and the federal judge found that plaintiffs had no standing to bring suit and stated that even if he had made a ruling on their case, he would have allowed the votes to count. Winning! GOP losing.

    Of course, plaintiffs appealed the case to the 5th Circuit but dropped their request that the votes be thrown out and sought an injunction banning drive-thru voting, which overnight/last night was:

    IT IS ORDERED that appellants’ motion for injunctive relief to issue a preliminary injunction banning drive-thru voting on Election Day, November 3, 2020, is DENIED.

    Still winning... GOP still losing but trying desperately to stop Texans from voting because they're seeing the same numbers coming out of Texas that everyone else is, and they're terrified to have all the votes in Texas counted!

    Suck it, GOP. Texas is flipping... sooner or later. :)

  29. [29] 
    Bleyd wrote:

    Kick [28]

    Cool, I hadn't seen that last part, latest I'd heard was that they were still planning to appeal the ruling. Good to see that the votes already cast will be counted. I think the injunction, even if it had been ordered, probably wouldn't have been a big deal, more of a face-saving effort than anything.

  30. [30] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    Don Jr is trying to reclaim the title of dumbest child from Tiffany. Fat Donny is going to win Antarctica's electoral votes?

  31. [31] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    JFC -

    Trump's polling really well with the penguin demographic...



  32. [32] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    Kick [24]

    I'm definitely not drinking anyone's koolaid and don't have access to any weed, but if I did, I would most likely bake it into cookies or cake.

    Unfortunately it is not yet legal here though our Deputy Premier tells me they have voted to legalise it. His party has just won another 4-year term so I'm expecting/hoping marijuana will be legalised here sometime in the next year or so.

    As for my Senate picks - and I wish I could include Amy McGrath but I don't think her outstanding debate performance will move the needle with Kentucky stick-in-the-muds - I prefer to be optimistic, especially since there's been very little opportunity for optimism in the last four years. And in case the worse happens, I want to get as much optimism in as I can while I can!

    PS: I'm not good at reading punctuation emojis beyond :( and :) so I wouldn't recognise a wink from a nudge.

  33. [33] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    Bleyd [25]

    The republican challenge lost in the state Supreme Court and, most recently, in US District Court with Judge Andrew Hanen tossing it out in a verbal ruling. They have now filed with the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. Not sure when the suit will be heard but chances are good they'll promptly side with Judge Hanen and it will be thrown out again.

  34. [34] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    Kick [26]

    Thank you for pointing out all my mistakes. I am now completely pessimistic. We'll lose every senate seat including Alabama. Happy now?

  35. [35] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    John From Censornati [26]

    Thanks for sticking the boot in and reminding me why I don't come here very often anymore. You're not exactly a friendly or pleasant group. I thought it would have improved without Michale but evidently not.

  36. [36] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    You're welcome.

  37. [37] 
    Kick wrote:


    I'm definitely not drinking anyone's koolaid and don't have access to any weed, but if I did, I would most likely bake it into cookies or cake.

    Good choice. Brownies are seriously perfect for baking weed.

    PS: I'm not good at reading punctuation emojis beyond :( and :) so I wouldn't recognise a wink from a nudge.

    ;) <---- That's a wink. I know nothing of a "nudge."

    Thank you for pointing out all my mistakes. I am now completely pessimistic. We'll lose every senate seat including Alabama. Happy now?

    Actually, I really did like your list and how you have Democrats winning 60% of the Senate; I just know that's not going to happen in 2020. I think a realistic outcome will be 51-53 seats... somewhere around there. Do not bet on Doug Jones, but definitely don't bet against the astronaut. :)

  38. [38] 
    John From Censornati wrote:


    I don't think either one of us was especially tough on her.

    I wonder if Aussies know that story about the pot and the kettle. I remember her getting really hostile with me while simultaneously getting really chummy with Mike Hunt.

  39. [39] 
    Kick wrote:


    The republican challenge lost in the state Supreme Court and, most recently, in US District Court with Judge Andrew Hanen tossing it out in a verbal ruling.

    Incorrect. Most recently, the GOP lost in the Fifth Circuit: See [28] above. Also, Judge Hanen made a ruling both verbally and written.

    We got paper in Texas too. :)

  40. [40] 
    Kick wrote:


    Thanks for sticking the boot in and reminding me why I don't come here very often anymore.

    "Boot in"? Heh.

    You're not exactly a friendly or pleasant group.

    Said the Australian with memory issues who pops in occasionally and refers to this group as "liars"... but not before she posts a lot of falsehoods and misinformation.

    I thought it would have improved without Michale but evidently not.


  41. [41] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Mopshell -

    I for one loved to see some wild-eyed optimism. It's been missing from all the rundowns I've seen. So thanks!

    I thought I was being pretty wild-eyed with that Texas call, too.



  42. [42] 
    Kick wrote:

    John From Censornati

    I don't think either one of us was especially tough on her.

    Oh, I quite agree, JFC. I think we have been pretty nice under the circumstances and all.

    I wonder if Aussies know that story about the pot and the kettle.

    Pot is good in brownies, and kettles are good too; I just assumed everybody already knew that. ;)

    I also wonder if Aussies know that story about not being able to pour piss out of a boot with a hole in the toe and the directions on the heel.

    I remember her getting really hostile with me...

    Me too... I got these memory issues where I remember things, and I most definitely remember many of us saying things that she accused "no one" here of ever saying... while multiple of us already said it and said it directly to her. I also definitely remember her referring to Americans as "liars"... but not before she posted a bunch of falsehoods about Americans and America.

    ... while simultaneously getting really chummy with Mike Hunt.

    Who? ;)

  43. [43] 
    James T Canuck wrote:

    Here we go, strap in, she's a rickety charabanc, but there's life in the old thing yet to burn.

    Obviously, barring any accidental last-minute nuking of California and New York, Biden seems to be in the groove to be the next hall monitor of the US of Whatsits.

    I ran a few numbers based on all the percentage-based polling for both the Popular vote and state EC tallies...I ran them twice to be pedantic.

    The popular vote is just that, a straight percentage.

    The ECV is where the juice is...

    Biden has an 81.7% chance of hitting 270 first.
    Trump, the sad fuck, has a 17.3% chance of crawling over the line first. (fun fact, Trump has the same odds as one roll of a die to hit a randomly chosen number.)

    Over the last few years, I think I may have mentioned an old and dear acquaintance who works for a 'Disreputable Media outlet'...(cough-FOX-cough). We usually don't talk politics, as he never matured into a thoughtful liberal. We play WGT golf, and he's not bad, except for his approaches, he's clueless when it comes to the wind speed x height + distance...It's child play. Anyhoo, we chatted last night and covered a bit of ground. He's fairly sure Trump is back on the ground regarding his chances as out of the blue all things Trump at the network have been scaled back. Apparently, there's an internal juggle underway, as he put it...'A directional shift of a few degrees to caution'. Given what he knows, as his job is safe, between now and Christmas there are a few of the more feral Foxian types on the chopping block if 'tone' and content can't reign itself in... Hannity and Levin seem to be tameable, Carlson apparently doesn't care and Ingraham does what she's told. Seems the Murdoch's want a slight shift away from antagonising 'anyone' regardless of who's kicking around the White House.

    The most telling thing I heard was, my 'acquaintance' was dis-invited to soiree tonight, for 'business'.

    Asked what to watch out for tonight, 'No doubt, Jimmy, Texas'

    For what it's worth, I don't see it, I can see Florida --maybe--, but then I don't have a billion-dollar corporation's tools to use. There's a bottle of 15-year-old Dalwhinnie single malt riding on this sucker, and I don't want to give it up, I've had it 12 years. If I win, I get a MAGA hat worn and signed by Trump from 2016.

    Good luck everyone, Biden, putative president, should be called by one am... or earlier.


  44. [44] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    OK, I've posted a placeholder election-watching column to start a new comment thread.

    Everyone ready? Here we go!


  45. [45] 
    Kick wrote:

    James T Canuck

    The popular vote is just that, a straight percentage.

    Wow. That is very optimistic, and a 14-point win would equate to a landslide in the Electoral College.

    I expect closer to:
    Biden... 53%
    Trump... 45%

    I hope you are correct and I am wrong. :)

  46. [46] 
    Kick wrote:


    Very nice picks. I too think Biden will easily regain Michigan and Wisconsin. Pennsylvania will be closer, but I expect Biden to win it when the votes are all counted. The Blue Wall is back, baby.

    As for the toss-ups, we agree on:

    Georgia: Biden
    Iowa: Trump [He's got to win one of them, right?]
    North Carolina: Biden
    Pennsylvania: Biden

    But we diverge on a couple because I think:

    Arizona: Biden... Arizona is out of reach for Trump
    Florida: Biden... Seniors and independents
    Ohio: Biden... Independents and wishful thinking

    As for Texas: Never heard of it. ;)

    Okay, Texas is in play in 2020 because approximately 16%-18% of voters are "new" and didn't vote in 2016, and the numbers in 2020 are "off the charts" in a state that usually has participation of "dead last" or awfully dang near the bottom of the list. Your description for Texas is actually spot on, CW, as "Gen Z" are coming out in full force in Texas, and the suburbs continue to move away from the GOP.

    The key to winning Texas will be GOTV of Hispanic voters, and they have also been disproportionately affected by COVID-19. Texas is now definitely possible.

    Texas in 2024? Easier flip.
    Texas in 2020? I'm not expecting it, honestly, and I'm a skeptic for many reasons... not the least of which is history. It's going to be close. My number crunching shows Trump losing an average of 8% across the board, and he won Texas by 9% in 2016. So it wouldn't surprise me if Trump wins it by a point. Still... I'm not about to bet against the Indies in Texas. You definitely have some giant honking cojones in calling Texas for Biden! :)

  47. [47] 
    John From Censornati wrote:

    James Carville says he's gonna drink his bottle of Pappy Van Winkle tonight. My bourbon won't be quite as expensive.

  48. [48] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    i got some single malt.

  49. [49] 
    Kick wrote:

    What, no pie? :)

  50. [50] 
    nypoet22 wrote:


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