WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — The United States is less than 50 days from the 2020 Presidential Election between President Donald Trump and former Vice President Joe Biden. With an estimated $7 billion likely to be spent on federal races this election cycle – according to the tracking firm Kantar – it’s time to check-in and see where the polls are moving.
As of Wednesday, the Real Clear Politics average of polls showed Biden with a 6.2 percent lead in the national popular vote. Their breakdown shows Biden likely to capture at least 49 percent of the electorate, with President Trump holding on to 43 percent on average. The remaining voters are either still undecided or likely to vote for a third party. The race has remained relatively stable with Biden maintaining a lead of between five and 11 percent for most of the last year.
The election is tighter in key swing states. RCP updated averages for battlegrounds Wednesday and shows Biden leading by an average of 3.7 percent in the states likely to swing the election. Winning Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania has been viewed as Biden’s clearest path to the White House by many pundits this cycle, and RCP lists Biden with at least a four percent lead in each of those.
A New York Times feature allows readers to assign “toss up” states to the candidates and view potential Electoral College outcomes. If all the states currently viewed as leaning toward Biden go his way, he would win the election without needing to claim Florida or flip traditionally red toss up states like Arizona and Georgia.
Based on the latest polling, the FiveThirtyEight election monitoring website has created a model that simulates thousands of potential outcomes for the 2020 election. As of September 15th, their modeling suggests 100 possible election outcomes, with Biden winning in 76, Trump in 23 and one scenario ending in a tie.
“Since we officially launched our forecast on Aug. 12, Arizona is the state where Biden’s odds of winning have improved the most. However, don’t count President Trump out yet. He may be the underdog at this point, but he still has a roughly one-in-four chance of pulling off an upset,” FiveThirtyEight blogged on Tuesday.
As of Tuesday, that site pointed to Pennsylvania as the most likely state to push Biden above the 270 Electoral College votes he needs to secure the White House, with Biden potentially able to run up the score by claiming Arizona, Florida and North Carolina as well. A number of the models even have Texas turning blue, which would create an electoral landslide for Biden. Wisconsin, eyed by many as be the likely decisive swing state, has been trending toward Biden in recent months, though the Washington Post still describes Biden’s lead there as “narrow.”
The betting markets – which are designed to induce bets rather than predict outcomes – have the race slightly tighter than the polling averages. Real Clear Politics’s betting average had the race as a coin flip to start September, but it has since moved slightly towards Biden.
As of Wednesday, the gambling site Bovada had the line on Biden at -115, meaning a person would have to gamble $115 to win a hundred if the former Vice President wins on November 3rd. A bet on Trump offers only a slightly better return, earning $100 on a $105 bet.