Election Update: September 8, 2020

Pennsylvania, Florida Are Tight; Biden Shows Some Life in Ohio

The only change this week is I’m moving Pennsylvania to Tossup. It’s probably more lean Biden, but several polls have shown it close and shown Biden under 50 percent. While I think that’s a pretty OK place for Biden to be right now, Trump is one polling error away from winning Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania’s politics makes for an interesting predicament for the Democratic candidate. While the Philadelphia and Pittsburgh suburbs are moving left quite dramatically, Democratic strength in coal country and in the Poconos still has some room for Republicans to make inroads. A lot will depend on whether Biden can win back some Obama voters in Erie, and the Lehigh and Wyoming valleys. COVID-19 may actually help him here as plenty of New Yorkers, notably black and Hispanic, have relocated to Northeastern Pennsylvania. In a close election, they might be decisive. Democrats are also heavily investing in the 10th Congressional District that includes Harrisburg, the state capital, and York and increased Democratic turnout there may also help.

I think it is likely Trump gets close to his 48 percent in Pennsylvania this year, but if Biden coalesces the anti-Trump vote, he should be able to reach 50 percent and win the state. Quinnipiac had Biden polling at 52 percent, so a 52-48 or 52-47 win is not out of the question. A 3-4 point Biden win is a likely scenario, but a win is a win and Biden’s somewhat comfortable leads in Wisconsin and Arizona may mean Pennsylvania won’t give him the 270th electoral vote. I’ll reassess Pennsylvania in the tossup column if more polls come out showing Biden leading.

The rest of the map is unchanged this week. Polls have shown some Biden strength in Ohio and a close race as usual in Florida. They both remain tossups. Some polls have show Texas a tossup, but I’m not yet convinced. I do things there’s a reasonable chance enough Texas Republicans might vote Libertarian that a 48-47 Biden victory is possible (Beto O’Rourke got 48 percent of the vote in 2018). I still think its leans Trump though but I’m right on the cusp of calling it a Tossup.

Interesting thing about this week’s map – Biden is sitting at 270 without the tossups.

2 thoughts on “Election Update: September 8, 2020

  1. Looks to me that Arizona, Minnesota, and Wisconsin should still be counted as undecided. That makes a pretty tight race, unpredictable at the moment.

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