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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Goddard: 2020 Electoral College Map Shows Challenge for Dems

Taegan Goddard’s “2020 Presidential Election Interactive Map” below allows you to tweak the electoral vote total in various ways by clicking on the (grey) “battleground state” and changing it’s color to red or blue, depending on your expectation (270=blue/red victory). Of course this is way-early guessswork, but at least you can make it data-driven guesswork by analyzing recent polling data from some of the sources listed below.

It can be argued that there are a few more than just six battleground states, perhaps as many as a dozen by some estimates. But any credible list would feature these six as leading swing state probabilities. Goddard’s interactive electoral vote map:

2020 electoral vote map

Goddard’s sources, “currently based on the consensus of the following forecasts and polling data:

Feel free to find some more recent data sources in particular states for tweaking the map. Goddard will be “updating the consensus map as more forecasts come in” and invites readers to “use the 2016 electoral map or the 2018 midterm election voteas the starting point for your own electoral forecast.”

He notes, also that “Because most states allocate their electoral votes on an “winner-take-all” basis — the exceptions being Maine and Nebraska, which split their electoral votes by congressional district” and “If the election results in a 269 to 269 electoral vote tie, then the House of Representatives convenes to choose the president.”

As the battleground state with the largest number of electoral votes, Florida is critical to the strategy of both parties. “If Trump were to win Florida again, Democrats would need to recapture three Midwestern states in the Rust Belt — or find substitutes — to win the presidency,” Goddard writes. “If Democrats win Florida, any one of the three Rust Belt states would secure the presidency, unless Trump can pick off another blue state that Democrats won in 2016.” PA has the battleground’s second largest total number of electoral votes, after FL

Noting that, in 2016, Trump “carried three “Rust Belt” states that many expected Democrats to win: Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania,” Goddard adds that “Trump won these three states by less than a combined 80,000 votes, or just .06% of the 137 million votes cast. But that was still enough to get Trump to the 270 to win.”

Alternatively, “Some say Democrats could pursue a “Sun Belt” strategy and perhaps win Florida plus North Carolina, Arizona, Texas or Georgia. All of those states went to Trump in 2016, but there are some indications from early polling that at least some might be among the battleground states in play in 2020.”


One comment on “Goddard: 2020 Electoral College Map Shows Challenge for Dems

  1. Anonymous on

    Florida is a must win for the Democrats next year. I could see a scenario where Trump wins Florida narrowly and loses the White House but Florida’s 29 electoral votes and reflective nature of the country as a whole make the state a must win for Democrats. It’s an uphill battle and a lot depends on who the nominee is but we have to win in Florida.


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