Alright, the time has come for me to write up my 2020 U.S. Presidential Election prediction. I first want to give a shout out to 270towin.com for helping make my prediction possible. They do a fantastic job gathering data on the states, how they’re likely to vote, how they’ve voted historically, etc. The goal of this piece isn’t for me to say who I want to win, but rather give an unbiased prediction for how the presidential election will turn out based on polls, state voting trends, etc. I will break down how I expect each state to vote in alphabetical order and how likely they are to vote that way based on the polls, odds, etc. I’ll also include the electoral votes and keep a running total along the way. Lastly, by all means, feel free to share your own prediction below!
Note: Red refers to Republican (Trump/Pence). Blue refers to Democrat (Biden/Harris). In order to win the presidency, a candidate must garner 270+ electoral votes.
Alabama (9): Alabama is a very red state. They went heavily for Trump in 2016 (62.1%) and there is no reason to think that’s going to change in 2020. Democrat Senator Doug Jones narrowly defeating Republican Roy Moore in the 2017 special election doesn’t mean Alabama is flipping blue any time soon. As a matter of fact, odds have Jones losing his seat to Republican Tommy Tuberville. In case you were wondering, the last time Alabama voted for a Democrat for President was 1976 (Jimmy Carter).
SCORE: 9-0 Trump leads.
Alaska (3): Alaska is another Republican stronghold, going for Trump in 2016 (51.3%) over Hillary Clinton (36.6%). The only sliver of hope for Democrats is that relative to other years, Alaska didn’t support Trump as much as they had supported other Republican candidates in 2000, 2004, 2008, and 2012. Bush, McCain, and Romney all did better than Trump in Alaska. That indicates there is an outside shot that maybe Biden pulls an upset. Still, I expect Alaska to stay red.
SCORE: 12-0 Trump leads.
Arizona (11): Arizona has been a stronghold for Republicans over the years, but in 2020, it is considered to be a toss-up state with some polls even indicating a slight edge for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. 270towin.com has Arizona in the category of “leans Biden.”
A major reason to believe Biden can flip Arizona is because Trump has been struggling amongst suburban women and also, relative to other Republican states, Trump didn’t do so hot in Arizona in 2016 even though he still won the state. Trump got less than 50% of the vote in Arizona in 2016 (48.7%) while Hillary Clinton got a very solid 45.1%. Arizona also a strong Latino population, a group that typically supports Democrats.
One other demographic that could affect Arizona as well is the Latter-Day Saint vote. While most Latter-Day Saints vote Republican, this is a Republican group that Trump has struggled with relative to other Republican groups. I’ll touch more on that when I get to Utah, but Trump’s lack of popularity with members of the LDS church could hurt him in Arizona as well.
When looking at how close Arizona was in 2016, Trump struggling among key groups, and also the fact that Biden is much less disliked than Clinton was, I think Biden is going to pull out a win in The Grand Canyon State. One bonus factor is the way Trump trashed John McCain. That makes things even harder for him.
SCORE: Trump leads 12-11.
Arkansas (6): Arkansas is a Republican stronghold, voting for Trump (60.6%) in 2016. The last time Arkansas voted for a Democrat was in 1992 and 1996, both years former Arkansas governor Bill Clinton headlined the Democrat. If Biden was from Arkansas, maybe he’d have a shot. But he’s not. Arkansas will once again go for Trump.
SCORE: Trump leads 18-11.
California (55): California was a Republican state through the Ronald Reagan/George H.W. Bush years. But since voting for Bill Clinton in 1992, California has consistently been a Democrat stronghold and a very important one at that due to having the most electoral votes of any state. California went for Hillary Clinton in 2016 (61.7%) and there is no reason to think Trump has even a prayer of flipping the state red. Due to the presence of California Senator Kamala Harris on Joe Biden’s ticket, I think California could give Biden as much as 67.0% of their votes. That would be more support than they had for Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, John Kerry, and Al Gore.
SCORE: Biden leads 66-18.
Colorado (9): Considered a purple state (mix of red and blue), Colorado on paper is a swing state going Republican four times and Democrat four times since 1988. However, Colorado has been streaky, going Republican in 1996, 2000, and 2004 and Democrat in 2008, 2012, and 2016. For those that are curious, Colorado voted for George H.W. Bush in 1988 and Bill Clinton in 1992.
Anyways, the current trend for Colorado is a blue trend. Hillary won the state in 2016 with 48.2% of the vote while Trump got 43.3%. I expect Colorado to come through for Biden, though it is certainly not a state that Democrats should take for granted.
SCORE: Biden leads 75-18.
Connecticut (7): The last time Connecticut voted for a Republican was in 1988 when George H.W. Bush won the state. Since then, Colorado has been a Democrat stronghold. Hillary won 54.6% of the vote in 2016 while Trump got just 40.9%. Given Biden having lower negatives than Hillary, I expect an even more sound victory for Biden in Connecticut. We could see Biden get more than 60% of the vote in Connecticut.
SCORE: Biden leads 82-18
Delaware (3): Delaware is another Northeast state that has gone blue ever since voting for Bill Clinton in 1992. Kinda interesting how that whole region basically flipped blue in 1992 and hasn’t looked back. It’s also Joe Biden’s co-home state along with Pennsylvania. Biden wins this one easily.
SCORE: Biden leads 85-18.
District of Columbia (3): Washington D.C. is heavily Democrat, giving the Democrats 85+% of the vote every time. Hillary got 90.5% of the vote in 2016 while Trump got 4.1%. Biden will win D.C.. The only question is can he crack the 95.0% barrier.
SCORE: Biden leads 88-18.
Florida (29): Florida is the toughest state to predict in this entire race and many elections have been decided by Florida. As a matter of fact, the winner of Florida has gone on to win the election every time except for two instances since 1928 (John F. Kennedy in 1960 and Bill Clinton in 1992). So, if you want to know why all eyes are always on Florida, that’s why. And who can forget what happened in 2000 with Bush eking out a win in Florida, robbing Al Gore of the presidency?
When deciding who wins this state, what I’m looking at is recent voting trends and how things went in 2016. Since 1996, Florida has gone to the Democrat candidate three times (1996, 2008, and 2012) and the Republican candidate three times (2000, 2004, and 2016).
Looking closer at 2016, Trump got 49.0% of the vote while Hillary got 47.8%. For as much as he likes to claim Florida as his home base, it’s not like Trump exactly ran away it in 2016. I expect Florida to once again be close, but this time, I think it will swing in the Democrats’ favor. Biden doesn’t have the high negatives that Hillary had and it does sound like Trump has lost at least a little bit of support, especially among seniors who don’t like how he’s handed COVID-19. Those two factors indicate a Biden win in the Sunshine State.
SCORE: Biden leads 117-18.
Georgia (16): Georgia is considered a toss-up state according to the polls, which is pretty amazing considering the fact that Georgia has voted Republican every time since 1996. Bill Clinton is the last Democrat to win the state in 1992 and before that, it was Jimmy Carter in 1976 and 1980. Not surprising given that Carter is from Georgia. If Joe Biden wins Georgia, that will indicate Trump is in serious trouble and likely toast. Trump got 50.8% of the vote in 2016 while Hillary got 45.6%. There is certainly a chance Biden flips the state blue and that has to worry Trump a lot. Still, I expect Georgia to go for Trump. It will be closer than Trump would like it to be, but I do think he’ll pull it out.
SCORE: Biden leads 117-34.
Hawaii (4): Since 1988, Hawaii has been a Democrat stronghold and there’s no reason to think that’s going to change in 2020. Hawaii gave Hillary 61.0% of the vote in 2016 and gave Obama/Biden 70%+ in 2008 and 2012. Biden shouldn’t worry about Hawaii at all.
SCORE: Biden leads 121-34.
Idaho (4): Idaho is a Republican stronghold. They’re one of the longest Republican voting states in the Union. Trump wins this one easy.
SCORE: Biden leads 121-38.
Illinois (20): The last time Illinois voted Republican was 1988 when they went for George H.W. Bush. Since then, they’ve been a stronghold for the Democrats. There’s no reason to think that changes in 2020. Biden wins Illinois easy.
SCORE: Biden leads 141-38.
Indiana (11): By all measures and polls, Indiana is going to go Trump. It’s Vice President Mike Pence’s state and they gave Trump/Pence 56.8% of the vote in 2016 and Hillary just 37.9% of the vote. Indiana did vote for Obama/Biden in 2008, but was by 1.0%. I see no reason to think Indiana will go blue in 2020. Trump wins this state fairly convincingly.
SCORE: Biden leads 141-49.
Iowa (6): Iowa is considered a toss-up state after having gone for Trump in 2016. Trump won 51.2% of the vote in 2016 to Hillary’s 41.7%. On paper, Trump should win this state again. It’s hard to see Democrats making up that level of ground in four years. However, Iowa has been more of a blue leaning state over the years, voting for the Democrat candidate in ’88, ’92, ’96, ’00, ’08, and ’12. They liked Obama/Biden quite a bit, but just couldn’t stomach Hillary like many people.
Given how much they liked Obama/Biden, I got Biden picking up this state. Though it by all means should be close.
SCORE: Biden leads 147-49.
Kansas (6): Kansas is about as Republican as any state can get. Trump got 56.7% of the vote in 2016 and should once again get over 50% of the vote in 2020. Trump wins Kansas easily.
SCORE: Biden leads 147-55.
Kentucky (8): Kentucky voted for Bill Clinton in ’92 and ’96. Since then, they’ve been a safe Republican state. They’re the home to Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who has prided himself on being the guy who can save Trump. There’s little reason to think Kentucky will flip blue. Trump wins with at least 58% of the vote.
SCORE: Biden leads 147-63.
Louisiana (8): Louisiana is another southern state that last voted Democrat when Bill Clinton ran (’92 and ’96). Since 2000, it’s been one-way traffic for the Republicans. Trump will win Louisiana. The only question is by how much. He got 58.1% of the vote in 2016.
SCORE: Biden leads 147-71.
Maine (4): Maine is one of two states that doesn’t do winner take all, starting this process in 1972. Half of their four electoral votes go to the state winner while there’s a chance for the losing party to pick up one of two additional electoral votes. That’s what happened in 2016 as Trump got one electoral vote in Maine. Given the oddity of that result, I do expect Biden to pick up all four electoral votes this time.
SCORE: Biden leads 151-71.
Maryland (10): Maryland has voted for the Democrat every time since 1992. No reason to think they’re going to start voting Republican with Trump in 2020. Hillary Clinton won 60.3% of the vote in 2016, crushing Trump. Expect an easy win for Biden in Maryland.
SCORE: Biden leads 161-71.
Massachusetts (11): Massachusetts has voted for the Democrat every time since 1988. No reason to think they’ll vote for Trump in 2020. It won’t happen. If former state governor Mitt Romney couldn’t top 40% in 2012, Trump doesn’t have a prayer in this state.
SCORE: Biden leads 172-71.
Michigan (16): Michigan is one of the most important states to watch on election night. They went for Trump narrowly in 2016 (47.5%-47.3%), playing a crucial role in his victory. Trump is hoping he can squeak out another win in the Wolverine State, but given how narrowly he won it in 2016, I just don’t see him pulling it off in 2020. Obama/Biden did very well in Michigan, a state that voted Democrat from 1992-2012. Expect Biden to win Michigan rather soundly.
SCORE: Biden leads 188-71.
Minnesota (10): Considered a purple state, Minnesota prides itself on being the longest Democrat voting state in the union. Trump nearly flipped it in 2016 as Hillary won 46.4% to 44.9%, but I don’t see him flipping it this time. Minnesota has too strong of a Democrat presence in the Twin Cities to let Trump pull out a win. Biden wins the land of 10,000 lakes rather convincingly.
SCORE: Biden leads 198-71.
Mississippi (6): Mississippi is a Republican stronghold, having voted Republican every time since 1980. Trump has this state in the bag.
SCORE: Biden leads 198-77.
Missouri (10): Missouri is another southern state that went for Bill Clinton both times and has since voted Republican. Trump will win this state rather easily.
SCORE: Biden leads 198-87.
Montana (3): Montana pulled the lever for Bill Clinton in 1992, but since then has been a Republican stronghold. Hell, before Clinton flipped them, they were a Republican stronghold. There’s no reason to think Biden has a prayer in Montana. Trump wins easy.
SCORE: Biden leads 198-90.
Nebraska (5): Nebraska is the other state that doesn’t do winner take all. Two electoral votes go to the overall state winner and three additional electoral votes go to the winner of each district. Four electoral votes are going to Trump for sure. The only question is what happens to be leaning Biden. Obama/Biden won this district in 2008 and Trump won this district by just 2.0%. Given how little Trump won this district in 2016, I think Biden/Harris pick it up. 4 electoral votes for Trump, 1 for Biden is how I see Nebraska shaking out.
SCORE: Biden leads 199-94.
Nevada (6): Also considered a purple state, Nevada has gone blue the last three election cycles after pulling the lever for George W. Bush twice. Hillary nearly lost it in 2016, but still won 47.9% to 45.5%. I expect Biden to make it four cycles in a row for the Democrats.
SCORE: Biden leads 205-94.
New Hampshire (4): If there’s one northeast state Trump could maybe win, it’s New Hampshire. Hillary won it 47.0% to 46.6%. However, I think Trump’s shot to flip it red was in 2016 and not 2020. Expect Biden to win New Hampshire and keep the state blue once more.
SCORE: Biden leads 209-94.
New Jersey (14): Since 1992, the Garden State has voted Democrat every time. I expect no reason for that trend to be bucked by Trump in 2020. Hillary won New Jersey with 55.0% of the vote in 2016. Biden wins easily.
SCORE: Biden leads 223-94.
New Mexico (5): Since 1992, New Mexico has voted Republican just once in ’04. Hillary won with 48.3% of the vote in 2016. Former governor Gary Johnson shaved off some of her support and Trump’s support as the Libertarian candidate. With no Johnson in the race, Biden should win New Mexico with 50%+ of the vote.
SCORE: Biden leads 228-94.
New York (29): New York has voted Democrat every time since 1988. No reason to think Trump wins New York, a state that royally hates his guts. He screwed a bunch of New York bankers in Atlantic City and later bragged about it. New York doesn’t like Trump and they’ll make it known at the ballot box once again. Biden wins big in the Big Apple.
SCORE: Biden leads 257-94.
North Carolina (15): North Carolina historically has been a Republican stronghold, going red every time since 1980 with the exception of 2008. However, Republicans (Mitt Romney) won by 2.0% in 2012 and 3.6% in 2016. It’s considered a toss-up state and one that I think could go Biden’s way. Still, when Obama/Biden took the state in 2008, it was by only 0.3%. Biden can’t win all the toss up states. Some will go Trump’s way and I think North Carolina will be one of those states.
SCORE: Biden leads 257-109.
North Dakota (3): Trump took North Dakota with 63.0% of the vote in 2016 and I see no reason to think he won’t win it again. Trump will win North Dakota easily.
SCORE: Biden leads 257-112.
Ohio (18): Ohio is the toughest state to predict outside of Florida. They went heavily for Obama/Biden and then swung heavily for Trump/Pence. I have no idea what’s on this state’s mind. One thing that is consistent is that they’ve sided with the winner of the election in the last 14 elections. Since my math will lead to a Biden victory, I gotta give Ohio to Biden/Harris. History tells us Ohio sides with the winner.
SCORE: Biden wins 275-112.
Oklahoma (7): Oklahoma is another state in the mix for being the most loyally Republican. They backed Trump heavily in 2016 with 65.3% of the vote and they are certain to do it again in 2020.
SCORE: Biden wins 275-119.
Oregon (7): Oregon has gone blue every time since 1988. They’re another Democratic stronghold on the West Coast. Biden wins Oregon easily.
SCORE: Biden wins 282-119.
Pennsylvania (20): Pennsylvania is Joe Biden’s home state and he’s making a real push to win the state. So is Trump, who knows he really needs to win it if he has any chance of winning the election. Pennsylvania doesn’t always side with the election winner, though aside from 2016, they had voted Democrat every time since 1992. I don’t expect Pennsylvania to go red once again. I got Biden winning, though his flip flopping on fracking could make things interesting.
SCORE: Biden wins 302-119.
Rhode Island (4): Since 1988, Rhode Island has gone blue. That ain’t changing in 2020. Biden wins easily.
SCORE: Biden wins 306-119.
South Carolina (9): The main thing to watch in South Carolina is whether or not Democrat Jaime Harrison can take Lindsey Graham’s Senate seat. That should be interesting. As for Trump versus Biden, Trump will win even if it’s closer than expected. South Carolina has voted for the Republican candidate every time since 1980.
SCORE: Biden wins 306-128.
South Dakota (3): South Dakota is a fiercely loyal Republican state. They’ll cast their three votes for Trump easily.
SCORE: Biden wins 306-131.
Tennessee (11): Tennessee was one of those southern states that backed Bill Clinton but aside from that has been Republican. Trump will win this state easily.
SCORE: Biden wins 306-142.
Texas (38): There’s talk of Texas going blue and while I don’t deny that it’s happening, is 2020 the year they flip? As much as I would love to see that happen, I do think Trump will pull out a win in The Lone Star State. He won with 52.2% of the vote in 2016 and still has strong support there.
SCORE: Biden wins 306-180.
Utah (6): I’ve written a lot about why I think Utah could flip blue in 2020. Trump won just 45.5% of the vote in 2016, lots of Latter-Day Saints can’t stand voting for him, and Joe Biden isn’t disliked like Hillary Clinton was. That said, I still think Trump will pull out a win in Utah. It might be closer than he’d like, but he’ll get it done. I just don’t think Utah is ready to vote for a Democrat and break their streak as the longest red voting state in the union.
SCORE: Biden wins 306-186.
Vermont (3): Vermont used to be a Republican stronghold as the longest voting red state in the union through 1988. Then they flipped in 1992 and haven’t looked back. They’re now the state of far left Bernie Sanders and are firmly a Democrat stronghold. Biden could win Vermont while walking in his sleep.
SCORE: Biden wins 309-186.
Virginia (13): Virginia has voted Democrat the last three election cycles in ’08, ’12, and ’16. Before that, they were a Republican stronghold. Democrats appear to have flipped it for the foreseeable future. Expect Biden to win handily.
SCORE: Biden wins 322-186.
Washington (12): Since 1988, Washington has voted Democrat. Don’t expect that to change in 2020. Biden will win Washington easily.
SCORE: Biden wins 334-186.
West Virginia (5): West Virginia is a Republican stronghold. After being largely a Democrat state in the 80s and 90s, they’re now solid Republican. Trump will win the state, though as you can see, it doesn’t really matter at this point.
SCORE: Biden wins 334-191.
Wisconsin (10): Wisconsin voted Democrat from 1988-2012, flipping for Trump in 2016. I don’t think Trump has the magic to make it happen again. Of all the true swing states, this is the one Biden is most likely to win. Biden wins Wisconsin rather comfortably.
SCORE: Biden wins 344-191.
Wyoming (3): Wyoming is a state that is very Republican. Trump will win it, though as I’ve said earlier, he’ll only be padding his stats a bit by winning Wyoming.
FINAL SCORE: Biden wins 344-194.