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TOSS-UP - Larry Sabato’s 1st Look at 2020 Electoral College

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Many are running around using Trump’s ~50% DISapproval rating as a sign that he cannot be re-elected. Like the popular vote, approve/disapprove polls don’t mean much in deciding who will be the next president. That is the electoral college which may explain why the Left is so hot to replace the EC with a popular vote process. 

 

So how many liberal heads will explode when they read this? Larry Sabato, a mildly Left-leaning pollster, is out with his first look at the 2020 EC and it is a Toss-Up between Trump and an unnamed Democrat. 

 

TOSS-UP, let that sink in for now. 

 

The 2020 Electoral College: Our First Look

KEY POINTS FROM THIS ARTICLE

— Our initial Electoral College ratings reflect a 2020 presidential election that starts as a Toss-up.

— We start with 248 electoral votes at least leaning Republican, 244 at least leaning Democratic, and 46 votes in the Toss-up category.

The omissions from the initial Toss-up category that readers may find most surprising are Florida and Michigan.

— Much of the electoral map is easy to allocate far in advance: About 70% of the total electoral votes come from states and districts that have voted for the same party in at least the last five presidential elections.

The 2020 battlefield

With an approval rating in the low-to-mid 40s — and, perhaps more importantly, a disapproval rating consistently over 50% — it would be easy to say that President Trump is an underdog for reelection. The president won only narrowly in 2016 and did so while losing the national popular vote, making his national coalition precarious. He has done little to appeal to people who did not vote for him, and a Democrat who can consolidate the votes of Trump disapprovers should be able to oust him unless the president can improve his approval numbers in a way he has demonstrably failed to do in the first half of his term.

 

At the same time, the president’s base-first strategy could again deliver him the White House, thanks in large part to his strength in the nation’s one remaining true swing region, the Midwest. He’s an incumbent, and incumbents are historically harder to defeat (although it may be that incumbency means less up and down the ticket in an era defined by party polarization). Still, Crystal Ball Senior Columnist Alan Abramowitz’s well-regarded presidential “Time for Change” model, which projects the two-party presidential vote, currently projects Trump with 51.4% of the vote based on the most recent measures of presidential approval and quarterly GDP growth (the model’s official projection is based off those figures in the summer of 2020).

 

Arguably, the state of the economy is the most important factor: If perceptions of its strength remain decent, the president could win another term. If there is a recession, his odds likely drop precipitously. Meanwhile, it’s not a given that the Democratic nominee can consolidate the votes of Trump disapprovers, particularly if a third party candidate (Howard Schultz?) eats into the anti-Trump vote.

 

As it stands, the state of the economy next year remains unknowable, as does the identity of Trump’s challenger (Trump himself remains very likely to be the GOP nominee, although there’s always the possibility that someone else may ultimately be the candidate). So what’s there to say about the Electoral College right now?

 

A lot, actually.

 

(snipped)

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After the snip, a bit about Florida:

 

The Leans Republican electoral votes (123)

These states will help determine whether the election gets away from Trump or not; put another way, if a Democrat wins any of them, the election is likely over.

 

This category includes five of the nine most populous states: Texas, Florida, Ohio, Georgia, and North Carolina. Of these states, the Sunshine State is the one that is most arguably a Toss-up. After all, Trump only won the state by about a point in 2016, and Barack Obama carried it twice, including by about a point in 2012. And yet, we’ve seen Republicans, again and again, eke out very close victories in the state, including for Senate and governor in 2018. While we don’t want to put much weight on the midterm results — they just aren’t historically all that predictive of what’s to come in the presidential — we have to say that the fact that the Republicans won both statewide elections, including defeating incumbent Sen. Bill Nelson (D), was eye-opening to us. It’s easy to explain away the other Democratic Senate losses in 2018, which came in the heavily Republican states of Indiana, Missouri, and North Dakota: Democrats probably didn’t have much business holding those seats anyway, and the luck those Democratic incumbents enjoyed in 2012 ran out in 2018. But Florida, a bona fide swing state, voting Republican for Senate, too? We know that Nelson was a weak incumbent whose age was showing, and that now-Sen. Rick Scott (R) was an unusually strong and well-funded challenger in a year like 2018. Still, Scott winning was, it has to be said, one of the great electoral oddities in midterm Senate election history. As Alan Abramowitz pointed out after the election, Scott’s performance in Florida stood out: It was the only state where his basic model predicting 2018 Senate results based on a state’s partisan lean and incumbency showed that the GOP clearly should have lost, but didn’t.

 

This decade, Florida has featured two presidential contests, three gubernatorial races, and one Senate race each decided by a margin of 1.2 points or less. The Republicans won all but one of those races. Are the Democrats just unlucky, or does the GOP have a very small but steady edge in Florida?

 

To start this cycle, we’re going to assume the latter in our ratings.

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It might not matter what the EC does as states are working toward eliminating it, and going with the winner of the popular vote.

Trump was the second time Democrats got ripped off by the electoral college when they won the popular vote, so Democrats want to toss it.

They do not want to go for three times.

 

 

The National Popular Vote bill will take effect when enacted into law by states possessing 270 electoral votes (a majority of the 538 electoral votes).  It has been enacted into law in 12 jurisdictions possessing 172 electoral votes (CA, CT, DC, HI, IL, MA, MD, NJ, NY, RI, VT, WA).  The bill will take effect when enacted by states possessing an additional 98 electoral votes.

The National Popular Vote bill has now passed a total of 36 state legislative chambers in 23 states. The bill has passed passed both legislative chambers (but in different years) in 2 states with 14 electoral votes (CO, NM), and it has also passed one legislative chamber in 9 states possessing 75 electoral votes (AR, AZ, DE, ME, MI, NC, NV, OK, OR). It has been unanimously approved at the committee level in 2 states possessing 27 electoral votes (GA, MO). The National Popular Vote bill has been introduced in various years in all 50 states.

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12 mins ago, dena said:

It might not matter what the EC does as states are working toward eliminating it, and going with the winner of the popular vote.

Trump was the second time Democrats got ripped off by the electoral college when they won the popular vote, so Democrats want to toss it.

They do not want to go for three times.

 

 

The National Popular Vote bill will take effect when enacted into law by states possessing 270 electoral votes (a majority of the 538 electoral votes).  It has been enacted into law in 12 jurisdictions possessing 172 electoral votes (CA, CT, DC, HI, IL, MA, MD, NJ, NY, RI, VT, WA).  The bill will take effect when enacted by states possessing an additional 98 electoral votes.

The National Popular Vote bill has now passed a total of 36 state legislative chambers in 23 states. The bill has passed passed both legislative chambers (but in different years) in 2 states with 14 electoral votes (CO, NM), and it has also passed one legislative chamber in 9 states possessing 75 electoral votes (AR, AZ, DE, ME, MI, NC, NV, OK, OR). It has been unanimously approved at the committee level in 2 states possessing 27 electoral votes (GA, MO). The National Popular Vote bill has been introduced in various years in all 50 states.

"Any interstate compact that threatens federal supremacy must get consent from Congress."

 

Good luck with that. And beware what you wish for. Any popular vote in the U.S. would have much different results than any previous election.

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1 min ago, Cman said:

"Any interstate compact that threatens federal supremacy must get consent from Congress."

 

Good luck with that. And beware what you wish for. Any popular vote in the U.S. would have much different results than any previous election.

I ain't wishing, I am warning, making aware, of the changes afoot.

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4 mins ago, dena said:

I ain't wishing, I am warning, making aware, of the changes afoot.

The judicial appointments alone have made the dems downright ornery, and there ain't a thing they can do. But elections have consequences.

 

God save them if Ginsburg keels.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

Help me out but wouldn’t a change from the electoral college require a constitutional amendment? States can do all they want as a sense of the legislature but isn’t this a constitutional issue not a state to termination issue? I’m asking because I don’t know not trying to be rhetorical

 

 

 Edit to add: I just checked and it was the 12th amendment that established the current electoral college process. So it would seem to me, unless there’s a reason that makes this special, that the constitution would need to be amended in order to do away with the electoral college. And what are the odds of that happening through an amendment process? 

Edited by tomkaz

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 A two year out prediction on the EC is utterly useless except for discussions like this.      :D

 

The state of the economy will determine if Trump gets reelected.

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4 mins ago, Gotcow? said:

 A two year out prediction on the EC is utterly useless except for discussions like this.      :D

 

The state of the economy will determine if Trump gets reelected.

Yep. I've always believed that. 

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12 mins ago, Gotcow? said:

 A two year out prediction on the EC is utterly useless except for discussions like this.      :D

 

The state of the economy will determine if Trump gets reelected.

 

7 mins ago, fjr419 said:

Yep. I've always believed that. 

Granted and that’s exactly what the guy says. But he also points out that about 70% of electoral college seats are locked in by the states propensity to vote either red or blue. It’s a pretty safe bet that if the state is voted for the same party for the last four or five presidential elections their cycle is not going to get broken this time. Then again, that’s what Hillary was betting on

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52 mins ago, tomkaz said:

Help me out but wouldn’t a change from the electoral college require a constitutional amendment? States can do all they want as a sense of the legislature but isn’t this a constitutional issue not a state to termination issue? I’m asking because I don’t know not trying to be rhetorical

 

 

 Edit to add: I just checked and it was the 12th amendment that established the current electoral college process. So it would seem to me, unless there’s a reason that makes this special, that the constitution would need to be amended in order to do away with the electoral college. And what are the odds of that happening through an amendment process? 

I just know that the issue of doing away with the EC was passed in Maryland's legislature, and looked into it, and found several states up to the same thing.

Maryland's resolution goes into effect if a Red state, with equal Electoral Votes agrees...Wisconsin fits.

I am like you, and suspected an amendment change was needed...maybe this is a first step in that process,  don't know.

But it sure seems some states are sticking their toes in to test these waters.

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Serious question- will the felons who can now vote in Florida make a difference from mids 2018 to general 2020? The margins have always been razor thin there. 

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9 mins ago, PlumFishing said:

Serious question- will the felons who can now vote in Florida make a difference from mids 2018 to general 2020? The margins have always been razor thin there. 

Odds on seeing a 'Felons for Trump" sign at his next rally?

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