Election News

Oregon Joins National Popular Vote Compact

June 12, 2019

Gov. Kate Brown signed a bill Wednesday that adds Oregon to the National Popular Vote compact. 15 states and Washington D.C., with a total of 196 electoral votes have now approved the initiative. States in the compact agree to award their electoral votes to the winner of the nationwide popular vote, a choice that could differ from that made by its own citizens.  However, it does not take effect until states totaling 270 electoral votes have joined. Until such time, nothing is changing for how Oregon allocates its electoral votes.

The initiative is being driven primarily by Democratic-leaning states; all voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016 (see map, above). Aside from Colorado and New Mexico, these states have all voted Democratic since at least 1992.    Oregon last voted for a Republican in Ronald Reagan's landslide 1984 reelection. 

There's been little interest in this proposal from GOP-leaning states. Many of them are smaller and thus over-represented in the Electoral College.  However, that is not exclusively a Republican concern. Oregon's decision comess two weeks after Democratic Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak vetoed similar legislation in his state. Sisolak cited the reduced influence Nevada would have if the initiative took effect. 



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Warren Moves Ahead of Sanders in National Poll

June 12, 2019

Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren has moved past Bernie Sanders and into 2nd place in the 2020 Democratic field. That's the finding of a Economist/YouGov national poll of likely Democratic primary voters. Warren's four point margin over the Vermont Senator reflects a 9 point change since last week. 

It remains to be seen if this result is an outlier or the start of a trend. Sanders retains a lead of about 5% in the overall polling average. However, the 16% is Warren's high-water mark to date. She has made slow and steady gains since late April, when she first moved into double digits in a poll.


Texas a Battleground? Biden Narrowly Leads; Trump Edges Other Democrats

June 5, 2019

A new Quinnipiac poll in Texas gives former Vice President Joe Biden a narrow four point lead on Donald Trump. Six other prospective Democratic matchups favor the president by anywhere from one to four points. This includes a three-point lead over Texans Beto O'Rourke and Julian Castro.

 

Trump won the Lone Star State by 9 points in 2016. The state has not voted for a Democratic presidential candidate since Jimmy Carter won here in 1976. 

 


Trump Trails 2020 Democrats in Michigan; Voters Oppose Impeachment

June 5, 2019

We're tracking general election polls. Filter by state and/or prospective Democratic nominee.

Donald Trump trails in Michigan, one of the 'blue wall' states he flipped to win the 2016 presidential election, a new poll finds. The survey of 600 likely voters shows the two leading Democrats, Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders, with a double-digit lead over Trump. The race becomes more competitive against three other prospective nominees.

Trump won Michigan by 0.23% over Hillary Clinton in 2016; the closest margin in the nation. It was the first time the state had voted for a Republican since George H.W. Bush won here in 1988.

Impeachment

While the poll shows Michigan voters appear lukewarm on giving Trump another four years, they also seem inclined to let the president complete his term.  The same set of likely voters opposed impeachment by 53-40%, although they were split evenly on whether Trump had obstructed justice.

The Amash Factor

The pollster, Glengariff Group, also looked at Biden vs. Trump if Michigan Rep. Justin Amash was in the race as the Libertarian nominee. Amash received nationwide attention recently by becoming the first - and only -GOP member of Congress to say Trump's conduct met the threshold for impeachment. 

The survey found Amash would receive 10% of the vote, with Biden's lead over Trump dropping from 12 points to six. Interestingly, most of the Amash support would come from Biden, with Trump only losing two points, going from 41% to 39%.

 


New Feature: Delegate Estimates Based on Polling

June 4, 2019

We've added a delegate section to our Democratic state primary pages. Where one or more recent polls is available, you'll see an estimated allocation of the state's delegates based on that poll (or average).  A fully interactive delegate calculator will be available later this summer

Here's the estimated allocation of North Carolina's 110 pledged delegates based on today's Emerson College poll of the state. A 15% minimum threshold is required to win any delegates.  

It is important to note that even if the above poll proves exactly right, the actual delegate count will almost certainly be different. While some Democratic delegates are pledged based on the statewide vote, each of the state's congressional districts also receives a certain number of delegates. They are pledged to candidates based on the outcome within the specific district. We are making our calculations at the district level, but basing it on the statewide vote percentages. It's that last part that is problematic, as there will obviously be district-by-district differences in the results. For those that want to get detailed, the interactive delegate calculator will let you project vote share by district.

You can find information on all Democratic primary and caucus events here

 


Biden Still Leads Nationally, Two New Polls Find

June 4, 2019

Former Vice President Joe Biden remains well out in front of the large 2020 Democratic field, two new national polls find. In the Morning Consult weekly tracking poll, Biden is at 38%, twice that of Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, who is at 19%. Elizabeth Warren is third at 10%. These numbers have changed little in recent weeks.

CNN finds Biden at 32% with Sanders at 18%. No other candidate reaches double-digits. Biden dropped 7 points from the 39% he received in that organization's late April poll, which was released just after he formally entered the race.

Overall, the 270toWin national polling average has Biden at 34%, Sanders 18% and Warren 11%, with these new polls not impacting the numbers very much.  The race seems to have stabilized for now; that may well change after the first Democratic debate in 3 weeks.

 


Larry Hogan, John Kasich Pass on Primary Challenge to Trump in 2020

June 1, 2019

Gov. Larry Hogan of Maryland said in an interview that he would not challenge President Trump for the Republican nomination in 2020. The comment came just a day after former Ohio Gov. John Kasich said the same on CNN.

The decisions leave limited options for the "Never Trump" wing of the Republican Party. Thus far, the only notable challenge to the president has come from former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld. However, he has not won an election since 1994 and has gained little traction thus far. 


Nevada Gov. Sisolak Vetoes National Popular Vote Bill

May 30, 2019

Nevada's Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak vetoed a bill Thursday that would have seen the state join the National Popular Vote compact. Sisolak said that smaller states, like Nevada, could see their influence wane in presidential elections should the initiative take effect. This is the third time the state has failed to join, although the first time a bill has made it as far as the governor's desk.

14 states and Washington, D.C., with a total of 189 electoral votes have so far approved the initiative. It would take effect^ once that total reached 270, the number needed to win the presidency. States in the compact agree to award their electoral votes to the winner of the nationwide popular vote, a choice that could differ* from that made by its own citizens. (Article II of the Constitution leaves it to the legislature of each state to decide how it wishes to allocate its electoral votes).

The map above shows how the states currently in the compact voted in the 2016 presidential election. As it turns out, it also shows how these states voted in the 2008 and 2012 elections. In fact, aside from Colorado and New Mexico, these states have all voted Democratic since at least 1992.  

There's been little interest in this proposal from traditionally red states. Many of them are smaller and thus over-represented in the Electoral College. Additionally, two of the past five elections (2000 and 2016) have seen the electoral and popular votes diverge. Republicans were the beneficiary in both cases.

^ Any actual implementation would likely be delayed by legal challenges over the constitutionality of the approach.

* In Nevada's case, that is pretty rare. Aside from 2016, when it voted for Clinton, and 1976, the state has voted for the winner in every presidential election since 1912.


Requirements to Tighten After First Democratic Debates

May 29, 2019

The Democratic National Committee announced stricter debate qualifying rules on Wednesday. These will apply for the party's September and October events. This should help to reduce the historically large field of prospective nominees as the first nominating contests approach. 

Candidates will need to reach 2% in four approved polls between June 28 and August 28. By that August date, contributions from a minimum of 130,000 unique donors must also be received. Each of these metrics doubles the requirements for the first set of debates. In addition, both must be met to make the debate stage, as opposed to one or the other.

Per an Axios analysis, 18 candidates have currently qualified for the first set of debates. These will each be held over two nights, with the first scheduled for June 26 and 27 in Miami. Originally, the split was to be random, but a recent rules change will ensure that those with higher standing in the polls will also be more evenly distributed.

The full list of Democratic candidates is in the table below, along with their current national polling average and debate qualification status. 

The first fall debate is scheduled for September 12, with another one in October. These will only take place across two nights if enough candidates qualify under the new rules. 


Monmouth Poll: Biden Lead Grows; Warren, Harris See Gains

May 23, 2019

Joe Biden receives 33% support in a new nationwide Monmouth University poll of registered Democrats. It's a gain of 6% from Monmouth's last survey in late April. The former Vice President's lead jumped to 18 points over Bernie Sanders, who lost five points. Aside from Biden, Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris moved into double-digits; they were the biggest gainers after Biden.

Overall, the results of this poll were in line with the 270toWin nationwide average. Click the image below for more information.

Interactive Delegate Calculator

For those interested, we'll be introducing a Democratic delegate calculator later this summer. More details to follow.



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