Second, it is known that American politics was at some of its most polarized levels in history during the Trump presidency, meaning that most red versus blue cards are likely to remain unchanged from four years ago (or even 20 years earlier in that regard).
However, we thought that now is a good time like any publication of a basic election map of the state where all those big strangers will play and change like the months between now and the election.
As has become the norm in U.S. presidential politics, a race for 270 electoral votes is almost certain to descend on several states on the battlefield. So don’t let all those national polls that show a big advantage for Joe Biden get too stuck in your vision. Yes, in this current snapshot, it is clear that Biden has an advantage both nationally and in many key states. But the idea that this race was over in June seems a bit traumatic. It has been more than 30 years since the winning presidential candidate won more than 400 electoral votes, so it is difficult to break up the presidential election.
Trump’s war chest campaign is one of the clearest structural advantages he currently has in the race. Trump’s campaign ended in April with almost twice as much money as Biden’s campaign. The former vice president is working to close that gap as he tries to bolster all corners of the party after a competitive primary season that ended in March. In a clear signal, Trump’s campaign is currently playing more defenses than insults. It is rapidly increasing its advertising costs in what is expected to be the most contentious situation on the battlefield, rather than focusing increasing resources on expanding the playground. The Biden campaign hopes to take advantage of its current momentum by expanding the map and creating multiple tracks to 270 electoral votes, while Trump will state that he is defending some states that have been reliably red in recent cycles.
And the unknowns are pretty clear at this point.
What will be the further impact of the coronavirus pandemic this fall when voters prepare their opinion on the elections ahead of them for the presidency? Will the country be in the midst of reviving a spreading virus? Will the decline of the economy due to the spring shutdown be stopped by autumn? Will there be a recovery the way most Americans can experience it? Will the country’s assessment of Trump’s behavior in resolving the crisis and economic consequences be as it is now? Will Biden be seen as an acceptable alternative for Americans who are dissatisfied with the country’s current course? Will the method of obtaining and counting votes be dramatically different than ever with many voters? And will the renewed racial justice movement in America, as evidenced by protests across the country after the death of George Floyd, turn into an increase in voters in November?
Presidential re-election campaigns traditionally serve as a referendum on power. As a candidate and as president, Trump has consistently violated political rules and norms. He will have to find a way to defy that historical precedent and turn the competition into a choice – which will be a bigger challenge for him given Biden’s decades in public life, including eight years as vice president.
This opens up another unknown. Has the window closed that the president and his team have a clear dominant blow in defining Biden in a negative light for voters? The plan was to follow the re-election campaigns of George W. Bush and Barack Obama and do so immediately after the primary season, when Biden was out of money and not yet fully employed and fighting for a general election campaign. That time has certainly passed, but the question remains whether Trump’s team will manage to cut through all the events that dominated the public consciousness and simply drive the news cycle every day with a negative narrative framed around Biden. The president and his campaign have already reviewed a host of potential avenues they want to address, but how those attacks are still far from it.
This map should not predict what it will look like in November. It is an introductory footage based on conversations with Democratic and Republican operatives across the country, campaign aides and office holders about how everyone sees the current landscape. Finally, all components of modern campaigns will play a role in how they are shaped, including surveys, candidate visits, the purchase of TV and digital ads, and the power of field campaigns.
His goal is to think about where the battle for 270 electoral votes is likely to be most engaged.
Trump is starting with a solid base of 125 electoral votes from 20 states that are most likely undisputed in the fall. When you combine that base of solid states with an additional 80 electoral votes currently leaning in his direction, that brings Trump’s total of 205 electoral votes – 65 votes is far from re-election.
Biden begins the general election quest with a solid base of 190 electoral votes from 15 states and the District of Columbia. When you add the 42 votes cast in his direction, that brings his total of 232 votes – just 38 away from winning the presidency.
That’s why we have six states worth a total of 101 electoral votes that are likely to prove decisive in choosing the direction the country will take in the next four years: Arizona, Florida, Michigan, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.
People will argue here. There are those who claim that Michigan has already abandoned Democratic leanings, and there are those who believe that New Hampshire and Nevada are true players or that North Carolina may not be in danger of losing the president.
All of this may be true. And that map will be dynamic and change as the campaign progresses and candidates make their tough decisions about where they spend their time and resources and where they spend it.
Over the coming months, states will move from slenderness to battlefield status and back, but this opening clip is our best sense where campaigns believe the battle for fall will be most actively engaged and where both sides will do the most work to get voters to their candidate.
Alabama (9), Alaska (3), Arkansas (6), Idaho (4), Indiana (11), Kansas (6), Kentucky (8), Louisiana (8), Mississippi (6), Missouri (10), Montana (3), Nebraska (4), North Dakota (3), Oklahoma (7), South Carolina (9), South Dakota (3), Tennessee (11), Utah (6), West Virginia (5), Wyoming (3) (total 125)
Georgia (16), Iowa (6), Maine 2nd Convention District (1), Nebraska 2nd Convention District (1), Ohio (18), Texas (38) (80 total)
Arizona (11), Florida (29), Michigan (16), North Carolina (15), Pennsylvania (20), Wisconsin (10) (101 total)
Colorado (9), Minnesota (10), New Hampshire (4), Nevada (6), Virginia (13) (42 total)
California (55), Connecticut (7), Delaware (3), DC (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (20), Maine (3), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (11), New Jersey (14) , New Mexico (5), New York (29), Oregon (7), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3), Washington (12) (190 in total)
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