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What States are In Play?

The above map from Nate Silver's Winding Path to Victory.

Here are Nate Silver's Odds on 9 states.

2020 election States in Play 2020-09-28

In Play Discussion

Georgia, Iowa, and even Texas are more "In Play" for Biden than Pennsylvania and Wisconsin are for Trump.

In fact, if we define "In Play" as a 25% or better chance, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin are not even "In Play" for Trump.

You can dispute the percentages and make reasonable claims like "Biden is unlikely to win Georgia" and I would agree. But it is far less likely that Trump wins Wisconsin than Biden wins Iowa or Georgia.

Odds of Winning

Silver has Trump's odds of winning at 22%. I think that is about right based on the polls. 

Moreover, Trump can take none of those states for granted. He will have to spend money defending Iowa and Georgia, even Texas when his campaign is trailing badly in financing.

Spotlight Florida

Florida Polls 2020-09-28

The big news for Trump supporters was the A+ rated ABC News Washington Post Poll that gave Trump a 4 point lead in Florida.

Four more recent polls took away that gain, albeit by mediocre pollsters.

And although Trump gained (yet still trails in Florida), he lost his lead outright in Ohio. That's even worse for him.

Spotlight Ohio

Ohio Polls 2020-09-28

There is no realistic way for Trump to win without Ohio, Florida, and Texas. 

Yet, the three most recent polls have Ohio tilting to Biden by 1 to 5 percentage points. 

Fox News is a highly regarded pollster as is Quinnipiac University. 

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Biased Pollsters?

It is ironic that Fox News, a clear Trump supporter, has Trump getting kicked in Ohio with the Washington Post giving Trump a lead in Florida.

I have commented on this before. Except for sponsored polls, the pollsters want to be right. 

Trump fans attacking the Washington Post over bias now suddenly believe a Washington Post poll. 

Two Wildcards

  1. The Debates
  2. Trump Taxes

Biden could easily get rattled or confused in the debates. And Trump will try very hard to rattle Biden.

The debates are the best, if not only shot Trump has outside of mail-in vote shenanigans if the race is undecided election evening. 

Tax  Bombshell

The New York Times dropped an enormous bombshell today regarding Trump taxes.  

For discussion, please see my take, Trump Says Taxes are "Fake News": He Has an Easy Way to Prove It.

Much of the very lengthy report regards tax avoidance, a legal tactic. But several details were criminal in nature, if accurate. 

Three Points

  1. Avoidance is not a concern, legally.
  2. However, the public may see paying no taxes differently, even if legal.
  3. The big news is illegal writeoffs and illegal payments to family, not avoidance. Trump could easily wind up in jail.

Undecided votes might easily make a decision based on taxes.

The NYT had so many details that the odds of a Biden landslide win just rose. Even a Biden win in Georgia or Texas would not be much of a surprise following that report.

Related Posts

  1. Senate Surprises: What to Look Out For in the Election
  2. An Easy Way to Solve the Mail-In Vote Dilemma

Got Popcorn?

Trump desperately needs momentum.

The debate Tuesday evening may rate not five stars, but rather 5 bowls of popcorn and mud.