Poll Diving – part 7
Disclosure. A few weeks ago, an election scenario intrigued me and then I noticed that I wasn't alone in this consideration. And if it came to pass would there be any way for the left to punch above its weight. However, I first wanted to assess the possibility of such an outcome. My first pass on all the key states suggested that it was possible, but within a few days the polls suggested implausible and a few days later not worth considering. Thus, my first call on this presidential election is that we won't face an electoral college tie. That's good because given the current generalized stress level in this country, it would have been really ugly situation.
As of today, 30 October 2020, there remains indecision among enough voters in many states to accurately project where they'll end up. The election pros seem to be hedging on more and more states. Perhaps they're overcompensating for their 2016 flubs. OTOH, it never hurts to ask if there's something brewing that can't yet be seen in the numbers and if there is what is the most probable direction and is it regional or national.
The softening for Trump and shift to Biden – and it appears to me to have been in that order – has been slow. More drip, drip, drip than whoosh. It only gathered some steam in MI, PA, and WI after Biden broke through a barrier. However, the gap between Clinton and Trump was the least in those states and therefore, fewer drips were required.
The pattern isn't different in VA that Clinton easily carried by 5.3% points. Then it was Clinton 49.7 and Trump 44.4% with 4.5% third party. Now it's Biden 51-53% and Trump 39-41% with 3% third party. Will VA 'bleed' or 'leak' into NC? So far Trump's best recent poll number is off 2% points from 2016 and Biden's worst poll number is up 2% from Clinton's final.
There is more disparity in the FL polls than NC. However, Trump's range is worse and Biden's is better. Only one percentage point separated Trump and Clinton, but it was a solid point that could be read before the election. Still, Biden carrying FL seemed unlikely a few weeks ago. But it (whatever it is) is also happening in GA that Trump carried by four points in 2016. Trump's poll numbers in GA are worse than in FL, but Biden's aren't quite as good. Georgia flipping would be as big a surprise as MI in 2016. And contrary to my earlier assessment, Ossoff could win the senate seat.
Trump's wins in IA, OH, and TX were more solid, nine, eight and nine points respectively. So, the drips haven't added up to as much as in other states. Trump lead in most of the OH and TX polls even it it's not by that much. IA is closer to being tied. Factors that have shifted the polls in WI aren't absent from IA and could break the tie in the next few days.
AZ and NC, both favored Trump by four percentage points, look much alike in polling numbers. Both also have a sitting GOP Senator that is being effectively challenged. Otherwise these two states are very different. At the risk of getting this backwards or completely wrong, I'm still seeing a Biden win in AZ and NC remains too-close-for me to call.
In conclusion, on my cheat sheet, I only have ME CD2 and three states in play: IA, GA, and NC. That would put the EV at 318 Biden, 182 Trump, and 38 undecided.