United States Elections

2020 United States Presidential Election Predictions and Results

5 Mins read
2020 United States Presidential Election

We’ve made it, everyone: these are the 2020 United States presidential election predictions.  We published our final predictions on October 31, 2020.

The presidential forecast can change, and between June 3 and November, likely will change. However, we can only give you our prediction of the state of the race right now. This is our first presidential election since Electionarium was founded in 2017, and how exciting this is for us.

Below, you can see our map of the predicted results.

What Goes Into These Predictions?

There are no “models” here, neither the types that walk the runway nor the ones that spit out coefficients and tell you who will win an election. We look at polls, we look at news stories, and we read trends. Sometimes we are right and sometimes we are wrong, but Biff Tannen did not give us an election almanac from the future.  Next time we see him, we will ask.

You do not have to like the prediction and you can disagree with it. You may also like it and pledge your unending support to us, for whatever reason. Just keep checking between now and November 2020, because this is going to change.

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Current 2020 United States Presidential Election Prediction

2020 US Presidential Election Prediction - 10-31-20

2020 United States Presidential Election State-by-State Breakdown

Want to know our state-by-state ratings? Click on the image below to open (right click if you wish to open in a new tab). These are current ratings as of October 31, 2020.

2020 US Presidential Election Prediction - State by State 10-31-20Electoral Vote Ranges

2020 US Presidential Election Prediction - Electoral Vote Ranges 10-31-20

Video Analysis, July 26: Is 2020 Really Different from 2016?

Presidential Prediction Analysis, October 31

We predict Joe Biden will win the presidential election on November 3.  If we are wrong, the polls are wrong, and if the polls are wrong, they are very wrong.

Biden has led throughout the campaign in consistent fashion.  He leads in most, if not all, of the swing states by varying margins.  Even by reviewing our predictions and compensating for something like what happened in 2016 – the polls underestimating Trump – we still come up with a Biden victory.  Polling got close enough in 2016 in the end that a shift of a couple points, though noticeable, was not terribly egregious.  However, in 2020, Biden’s leads have been large enough that if Trump should win, it would constitute a much larger error than we saw in 2016.  We would go so far as to say a Trump win would be one of the biggest polling fails in modern electoral history, perhaps surpassing the 1992 British general election and 2019 Australian federal election.

We predict Florida, Georgia, and North Carolina are going to be very close, all perhaps with one-point margins.  All of these are states Donald Trump must win, and two are states we are not giving him at the moment.  Trump has no path to victory if he loses all three as Biden would project over 270 at that point.  Arizona is another one we think Biden takes but we are also not confident.

There may be some state margins that surprise us, even in results that do not represent flips.  Utah, for example, could be only about a 12 or 13 -point margin for Trump when the GOP should be putting up huge numbers.  South Carolina might be closer than normal.  Those are just two examples of what could be a wild election night and week.

Presidential Prediction Analysis, July 14

We have expanded Joe Biden’s lead in the Electoral College, and with our new EV ranges, we think his high-water mark is 413. The chances of him getting there are small, as he would have to win all of the following: Ohio, Texas, Georgia, North Carolina, Iowa, and the 2nd District of Nebraska. While things are going well for Biden, we’re not willing to concede they’re going that well. It is, however, plausible at this time that Biden could win them all, even Texas, where Trump’s poll numbers have been okay but worrisome for the GOP.

However, Trump’s high-end is 270, which is of course a victory. This assumes he pulls off wins in places like Iowa, Wisconsin or Arizona, Ohio, Florida, and North Carolina. That’s plausible as well. Let’s be clear: Donald Trump’s poll numbers are not good though by no means is the race “over,” but it is soon going to be at a tipping point. Either Trump gets back into contention in some of these swing states he won with a shake of the polls to the right, or Biden gets another small tilt in the polls and all of a sudden, it’s an Electoral College blowout. It is not guaranteed that Trump will get boatraced or that he’ll even lose, but losing another point or two in the national polls could mean the picture gets very ugly for the president. He must stop the bleeding coming out of the convention AND recover some ground getting into the fall, or he will lose.

Presidential Prediction Analysis, June 3

As we continue to build out this prediction page, we’ve given you the bottom line: we think Joe Biden is ahead.

With that said, we think that people hoping Donald Trump will lose should discount him at their own peril. Had we been running this website in 2016, it’s probable we would have said Hillary Clinton would win, if we’re being honest. She did win the national popular vote, but he walked a stunning tight rope in order to win the electoral college. Florida was a 1.2 point win. Michigan was about a quarter of a point margin. Pennsylvania and Wisconsin were each decided by well under a point. Hillary Clinton had her own close wins, like Maine and New Hampshire, but the states that put Trump over the top were by razor-thin margins. To win that many critical states by thin margins is something that will be difficult to repeat, but to say it’s impossible is not true.

2016 showed Trump can lose the national popular vote by about two points and still stitch together at least 270 electoral votes. His problem in 2020 is that he’s probably down more than that. We would believe anything between a four and eight-point deficit, but we will never know because the election is not today. As we said before, you can believe whatever you want about who is “actually” winning. Your guess is as valid as ours, but we own a web domain and hosting.

Our opinion is that Biden is leading in the following critical states: Arizona, Florida, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. We believe Trump is ahead in: Georgia, Iowa, Maine’s 2nd District, Nebraska’s 2nd District, North Carolina, Ohio, and Texas. All this works out to a 318 to 220 advantage for Biden as the campaign goes into convention season, virtual or relegated to Mar-a-Lago though they may be. Trump has had a lot on his plate in 2020, and so far, polling shows voters are not too crazy about the responses, but that’s also not true in every state.

At this point, we think there are slim odds that Trump will flip any Clinton states; New Hampshire and its four electoral votes are a possible exception. However, it is much more likely now that Biden will flip 2016 Trump states. If that’s the case, Trump can afford to have 36 electoral votes shaven off and still win. His poll numbers in Arizona are deteriorating, as well as in some Midwestern states he took in 2016, such as Pennsylvania and Michigan. It is hard for us to believe Texas is in play at this point, even though a handful of polls say it is, but the Republicans could have done a lot better there in the 2018 midterms.

We know for sure this will be an absolutely brutal campaign – as if 2020 has not been brutal enough.

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