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Electoral College: Trump makes it tight again

States with new poll data added since the last update: All 50 states and DC.

Notable changes in: Florida (29), North Carolina (15), Wisconsin (10), Colorado (9), Nevada (6), New Hampshire (4), and the tipping point

National Summary

It has been about two days since the last update. While there are mixed changes since then, on balance this is a good update for Trump, and the race looks closer than it did two days ago.

There will be one more update later today to capture any last minute polls released after the cutoff for this update. (There have already been a handful.)

Good for Trump

  • The expected case moves from Clinton winning by 108 EV to Clinton winning by only 8 EV.
  • The tipping point moves from Clinton by 1.8% in NC to Clinton by 1.6% in PA

Good for Clinton

  • Trump’s best case has deteriorated from a 112 EV win to only a 66 EV win

No Change

  • Clintons best case remains steady at a 210 EV win

Charts

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Discussion

The fact that Trump’s best case is getting worse is pretty much irrelevant. Either candidate winning all the close states is a very low probability event. A few months out it is good to show how things might reasonably move. But on election day, the expected electoral college and the tipping point are the two numbers to watch.

In the last update I speculated that because the tipping point and expected electoral college votes were going in different directions Trump may have topped out. But the movement toward Trump seemed to have a little bit of life in it yet. With the latest batch of update, the Election Graphs poll averages for Florida, North Carolina, and Nevada all move from just barely blue to just barely red. And the tipping point gets a bit narrower too.

Some have suggested there may a strategy to intentionally release Republican leaning polls at the last minute specifically to influence the poll averages, and the impact of some of these polls has been shown to be significant. This probably has something to do with the moves here too. But this site’s philosophy is to basically include all polls with very few exceptions, and when you throw everything in, this is the move you get. Given non-poll-related information on early vote results and such, I have my doubts about Florida and Nevada, but this site will stick to what the numbers say…

…and the numbers say that it is looking very close again. In the expected case Clinton wins by only 8 electoral votes. To flip the election, Trump only has to win Pennsylvania, and Clinton’s lead there is down to 1.6%.

The tipping point margin isn’t quite as small as it it was in September when it was down to 0.4%, but it is close enough that you could easily imagine a Trump win. Right?

Lets check the sites doing odds again for what they think the chances of a Trump win are…

The median estimate of Trump’s chances 2 days ago was 12%. Now it is 14%. So, slight increase, but not a huge one. And if you look at the individual estimates above, many actually went down since two days ago. But if everything is closer, why?

Well, each of the models of course have their own methods, and the movements in each would have a different explanation. Some of them discount or don’t include at all some of the pollsters showing the Trump movement that has moved my averages.

But just looking at the state of the race as a whole instead of specific models… Trump has never been ahead in the electoral college, by most measures he hasn’t ever led the popular vote either, and he’s also never led in Pennsylvania (or the other further off states he would have to flip to win).

So even taking the averages here at face value, and not doubting the status of Florida or Nevada, to win Trump would still need to break his September ceiling and do better than he has done at any time in this race so far. That is possible, but not likely.

Add to that the indications of high Hispanic turnout in several states, notably Florida and Nevada, and that some of the recent polls may be intentionally skewed… and it seems like if someone over performs their polls, it is more likely to be Clinton. But that is looking at things other than the polls themselves.

All and all, the new median of a 14% chance of a Trump upset seems about right.

Maine CD2, Pennsylvania, Nevada, North Carolina, Florida, and Iowa are all within 2% at the moment. They could still go either way based on the current averages. That is enough to swing the election.

So, as has been the case for awhile, a Trump win would be surprising, but should not be shocking. Trump has a path.

We shall all see soon enough.

In New Hampshire we already have some results of course… Dixville Notch, Harts Location, and Millsfield have already reported results. The totals: Trump 32, Clinton 23, plus a handful of votes for others. So there you go.

For real meaningful results, we now have less than 8 hours until parts of Indiana and Kentucky close. Then less than 9 hours until the first full states close and the states start getting called one way or the other.

We are almost there.

State Details

The following are the detailed charts for all the states that influenced the national changes outlined above.

Moving from Clinton to Trump

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No longer possible pickups for Trump

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Also impacting the tipping point

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A note about faithless electors

In the past few days there have been reports of first onethen two, expected electors from Washington state saying that that have decided to or are considering being “faithless electors” by voting for someone other than who they are “supposed to” when the Electoral College votes in December.

Yes, they can do that. In Washington state there would be a $1000 fine if they did, but they can do it, and it would count.

There was also one other potential elector from Georgia who suggested they would be faithless back in August. That potential elector came under extreme pressure and resigned, to be replaced by someone who would presumably vote the “right” way.

That might well happen to these two as well. But faithless electors can and do happen every few election cycles. In the last 50 years there were faithless electors in 2004, 2000, 1988, 1976, 1972, and 1968. That is 6 out of 12 elections during that period. Half. It would not be surprising if there were one or more faithless electors in 2016, especially given the contentious nature of the race. They have never made a difference in the final outcome.

The Election Graphs estimates show what the results “should be” given who wins various states. They do not take into account statements by individual electors on their intentions. If a scenario arises where it is close enough for electors who have made statements like this to potentially make a difference in the outcome or throw the race to the House, we will of course make note of that. And once electors vote in December, we will show the final tallies, including any votes cast by faithless electors.

A note about McMullin

Right now the Real Clear Politics average in Utah has McMullin 12.4% behind the lead. The 538 average in Utah has him 9.4% behind the lead. Although McMullin was a lot closer than anyone expected, he never got closer than 5% to the lead in Utah in these averages and now appears to be fading. 538 still has him in second place, but it doesn’t seem likely at this point that he will win electoral votes.

For more information…

This post is an update based on the data on ElectionGraphs.com. Election Graphs tracks a state poll based estimate of the Electoral College. All of the charts and graphs seen in this post are from that site. Additional graphs, charts and raw data can be found there. Follow @ElectionGraphs on Twitter or like Election Graphs on Facebook to see announcements of updates or to join the conversation. For those interested in individual general election poll updates, follow @ElecCollPolls on Twitter for all the polls as they are added. If you find the information in these posts interesting or useful, please consider visiting the tip jar.

Electoral College: Trump Surge Sputtering Out?

States with new poll data added since the last update: All 50 states and DC.

Notable changes in: Florida (29), Georgia (16), North Carolina (15), Virginia (13), Wisconsin (10), Colorado (9), Iowa (6), and the tipping point.

National Summary

It has been about two days since the last update. Since then the changes have been mixed, indicating that perhaps the recent movement toward Trump has topped out.

Good for Trump

  • The tipping point moves from Clinton by 2.2% in NH to Clinton by 1.8% in NC
  • Trump’s best case has improved from a 100 EV win to a 112 EV win

Good for Clinton

  • The expected case moves from Clinton winning by 32 EV to Clinton winning by 108 EV
  • Clinton’s best case moves from a 178 EV win to a 210 EV win

Charts

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screen-shot-2016-11-06-at-12-04-49647

screen-shot-2016-11-06-at-12-19-58777

Discussion

While we have some indicators moving in each direction, the two to pay attention to are the expected electoral college result and the tipping point. The two “best case” scenarios give all states with a margin under 5% to one candidate or another. Those are both highly unlikely scenarios less than three days out from polls closing.

Even those two indicators are mixed though. If you had to decide who is favored in this update, you would still pick Trump though. Even though his expected electoral total has gone down, the tipping point moves a bit in his favor, meaning that the amount he has to move polls in order to win has lessened.

So while he is losing by more, the amount of effort to change that has still decreased.

The one caveat there is that while the tipping point has improved since my last update, looking at the actual trend line it seems to be down from a recent peak.

If you put all these mixed messages together, it looks like the recent “Trump Surge” may have reached a high water mark… or at least a pause.

At these levels Clinton is of course still winning. The electoral result according to the current averages would be Clinton 323 to Trump 215, a 108 electoral vote win for Clinton. Trump does better than Romney did here, but still loses.

Trump still has ways to win though. The easiest way right now would be for him to pull in Nevada (0.1% Clinton lead), New Hampshire (0.7% Clinton lead), Florida (1.8% Clinton lead), and North Carolina (1.8% Clinton lead). That would get him to a 269-269 tie and throw the election into the House of Representatives, where he would probably win. To win outright, he would need to also pull in Maine’s 2nd congressional district, where Clinton is currently leading by 2.0% in the Election Graphs average.

Moving things by 2% doesn’t seem that big a move in the grand scheme of things, but given the history of the race in terms of what seem to be the candidate’s floors and ceilings, as well as reports of early voting trends in some of those states (specifically Nevada and Florida), moving those states that last little bit is harder than it may seem just looking at the percentages. If anything, the preliminary early voting data seems to indicate Clinton may end up over-performing the polling, not the other way around.

Just to check in with the sites that give odds (which we do not), the chances of a Trump win given all the current information:

The median of these 8 estimates is 12%. That seems reasonable and in line with what I would expect from the Election Graphs numbers and the small amount of time left before the election is over.

2.5 days until polls start to close. We are almost there.

State Details

The following are the detailed charts for all the states that influenced the national changes outlined above.

Moving from Trump to Clinton

chart-369

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Moving from Clinton to Trump

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Now possible Trump pickups

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Now possible Clinton pickups

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No longer possible Trump pickups

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Other states that helped move the tipping point

chart-376

A note about faithless electors

In the past few days there have been reports of first one, then two, expected electors from Washington state saying that that have decided to or are considering being “faithless electors” by voting for someone other than who they are “supposed to” when the Electoral College votes in December.

Yes, they can do that. In Washington state there would be a $1000 fine if they did, but they can do it, and it would count.

There was also one other potential elector from Georgia who suggested they would be faithless back in August. That potential elector came under extreme pressure and resigned, to be replaced by someone who would presumably vote the “right” way.

That might well happen to these two as well. But faithless electors can and do happen every few election cycles. In the last 50 years there were faithless electors in 2004, 2000, 1988, 1976, 1972, and 1968. That is 6 out of 12 elections during that period. Half. It would not be surprising if there were one or more faithless electors in 2016, especially given the contentious nature of the race. They have never made a difference in the final outcome.

The Election Graphs estimates show what the results “should be” given who wins various states. They do not take into account statements by individual electors on their intentions. If a scenario arises where it is close enough for electors who have made statements like this to potentially make a difference in the outcome or throw the race to the House, we will of course make note of that. And once electors vote in December, we will show the final tallies, including any votes cast by faithless electors.

A note about McMullin

Right now the Real Clear Politics average in Utah has McMullin 12.4% behind the lead. The 538 average in Utah has him 10.3% behind the lead. Although McMullin was a lot closer than anyone expected, he never got closer than 5% to the lead in Utah in these averages and now appears to be fading. 538 still has him in second place, but it doesn’t seem likely at this point that he will win electoral votes.

If that changes, I will of course note it in these updates and on the Election Graphs site.

For more information…

This post is an update based on the data on ElectionGraphs.com. Election Graphs tracks a state poll based estimate of the Electoral College. All of the charts and graphs seen in this post are from that site. Additional graphs, charts and raw data can be found there. Follow @ElectionGraphs on Twitter or like Election Graphs on Facebook to see announcements of updates or to join the conversation. For those interested in individual general election poll updates, follow @ElecCollPolls on Twitter for all the polls as they are added. If you find the information in these posts interesting or useful, please consider visiting the tip jar.

Edit 13:56 UTC to add an additional paragraph break.

Electoral College: Trump breaks the Romney barrier

States with new poll data added since the last update: All 50 states and DC. Multiple times each. Notable changes in Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, Iowa, Pennsylvania, Kansas, Colorado, Wisconsin, Maine (All), and Georgia.

There have been tons of polls, including “50 state” polls from three different sources, one of which had weekly data going back four weeks that needed to be added. There were many shifts caused by this batch of polls. We’ll look at all the charts, but lets start with the headline:

The Romney Barrier

chart-273

The averages in Florida, Ohio, and North Carolina all moved from Clinton to Trump. Iowa did move in the opposite direction, but it is much smaller, so the net change was dramatically toward Trump.

Before this batch of changes, the “expected” result if everybody won the states they lead was Clinton 341 to Trump 197… a 144 electoral vote win for Clinton.

With this batch of polls, the expected result is now Clinton 285 to Trump 253. This is still a Clinton win, but now by only 32 electoral votes.

From February onward this race had been stuck in the zone with Trump losing by margins between McCain’s loss (192 electoral votes) and Romney’s loss (126 electoral votes).

For the first time since February, Trump is now looking like he would do better than Romney did. Trump now matches Romney’s map, but adds Florida and Ohio. It isn’t quite enough to win, but Trump is now closer than he has ever been… and doing better than the last two Republican candidates.

Some folks were looking at Clinton’s lead in mid-August and were trumpeting the possibility of a Clinton landslide in early August. It was just looking like a solid win for Clinton back then, not a landslide, but things have actually moved in the opposite direction. A 32 electoral college win is more like a squeaker. It would only take Michigan flipping to get us to a 269 to 269 electoral college tie.

(There were also changes in the “best cases” from a lot of states moving in both directions. Trump’s best case went from winning by 68 electoral votes to winning by 66 electoral votes. Clinton’s best case went from winning by 210 electoral votes to winning by 190. So the overall range of possible outcomes reduced.)

Tipping Point

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Now, despite the expected case moving in Trump’s direction, changes in Florida, Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania had the net effect of… zero. Well, to be precise the tipping point changed from a 3.4% Clinton lead in Florida to a 3.4% Clinton lead in Michigan. So the state that holds the balance shifted, but the actual percentage did not.

Looking at the trends though, rather than just the change in this update, while the expected case has clearly been moving in Trumps direction the last few weeks, the tipping point has been trending toward Clinton.

What does this mean?

At a basic level it means that while Trump has made the race closer, pulling over the next few states he needs to win is getting harder.

3.4% is still close, but if Trump is at or near his ceiling, it may be a tough last 3.4% to move.

To be absolutely clear, with all of the above Clinton is still a strong favorite. Trump has made it a lot closer than it was, but he still has a lot of work to do to pull the remaining states he would need past the line to secure an electoral college victory. It isn’t impossible. It is just very hard.

Individual States

OK, with the two national summaries out of the way, time for a run down of all the states that shifted in ways that caused changes to the expected or best cases. I’ll just do a run down of all the graphs without commentary on each one. For the most part they speak for themselves. Keep an eye out for the polls that look like outliers. In some cases if new polls don’t back those up, the changes described here may reverse themselves quickly as new polls come in.

States moving from Clinton to Trump:

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States moving from Trump to Clinton:

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States now in play for Trump:

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States now in play for Clinton:

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States no longer in play for Trump:

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States no longer in play for Clinton:

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What’s Next

This batch of polls was huge, so in the time it took me to complete it, there have already been a bunch of new polls which I will be adding as soon as I can. Even if those polls don’t change anything, there will be polls soon enough that do. This is a dynamic race, and as I post this we have 54.7 days left until we start getting the actual results. Hang on tight, we’re in for a nice ride before we are done.

Note: This post is an update based on the data on ElectionGraphs.com. Election Graphs tracks both a poll based estimate of the Electoral College and a numbers based look at the Delegate Races. All of the charts and graphs seen in this post are from that site. Additional graphs, charts and raw data can be found there. Follow @ElectionGraphs on Twitter or like Election Graphs on Facebook to see announcements of updates or to join the conversation. For those interested in individual general election poll updates, follow @ElecCollPolls on Twitter for all the polls as they are added. If you find the information in these posts interesting or useful, please consider visiting the tip jar.

[Update 07:16 UTC to add comment about outliers.]

[Updated 07:27 UTC to fix some awkward wording.]

Curmudgeon’s Corner: We Like Buttons

On Curmudgeon’s Corner this week Sam and Ivan talk about the iPhone SE, the Panama Papers, and Tesla Model 3 before diving into Election 2016. On the election they of course cover the Wisconsin results, the outlook for the next states, the bleak view for Sanders, and of course the possibilities of a contested convention on the Republican side. With a few other random things thrown in for good measure.

Click below to listen or subscribe… then let us know your own thoughts!

CCCover20151125bw
Recorded 2016-04-06

Length this week – 1:33:50

 1-Click Subscribe in iTunes
 View Podcast in iTunes
 View Raw Podcast Feed
Download MP3 File
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Show Details:

  • (0:00:44-0:03:30) But First
    • Agenda
    • iPhone SE
  • (0:04:09-0:07:36) But Second
    • More iPhone SE
  • (0:08:16-0:24:00) Panama Papers
    • What and Who
    • Why not US people?
    • Putin’s Circle
    • Shocking?
    • Legal Implications
  • (0:25:05-0:43:25) Tesla Model 3
    • Lines / Preorders
    • Pros and Cons of the Car
    • Implications for Industry
    • VIP Email Notifications
  • (0:44:46 -1:33:38) Election 2016
    • Ivan’s Song
    • Wisconsin Results
    • Demographic Models vs Polls
    • Next States
    • Trump’s Delegate Game
    • Brokered Convention Scenarios
    • Rules changes for 2020?
    • Trump weakening in General
    • This week’s Trump craziness
    • Clinton vs Sanders
    • Trump Statement

Republicans: Closer to Chaos

Cruz won Wisconsin decisively with 36 delegates to Trump’s 6. That’s 85.71% of the delegates.

Adding in other updates and delegate adjustments in Alaska, Colorado, American Samoa, Louisiana, and North Dakota that happened since my last post and you end up with a net change of Cruz +50, Trump +6, Rubio+4, Kasich +1. That’s 81.97% of the delegates for Cruz, which is pretty overwhelming.

But Cruz needed 83% and change to actually be on pace to win the nomination outright. He did that in Wisconsin, but when you factor in all of the other things since Arizona and Utah he falls a little bit short. The net result is he holds steady. Cruz now needs 83.64% of the remaining delegates to actually win outright.

Nobody expects Cruz to win delegates at that pace. The scenario where Cruz actually gets to 1,237 delegates before the convention is outrageously unlikely.

So lets look at the more relevant question. Does this stop Trump from getting to 1,237?

Well, it certainly makes it harder:

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Between all of the things happening recently mentioned above, Trump goes from needing 52.22% of the remaining delegates to win outright, to needing 55.22%. Given that so far he has only managed 47.27%, this will clearly be a bit of a lift. If we had all proportional contests from here on out, it would probably be time to say it just wasn’t going to happen and buckle up for the contested convention.

Because of the craziness of winner take all and winner take most states though, we’re probably not quite there yet. But we’re a lot closer than we were before Wisconsin. But even that is complicated.

Taking Wisconsin into account, if you use 528’s “Can you get Trump to 1,237” calculator and follow the expert consensus projections, Trump falls about 55 delegates short. Now, they are giving Trump none of the uncommitted delegates. I agree that Trump won’t do well in this group, but zero seems a bit light.

The general picture though remains, which is that if all the remaining states go “as expected” Trump will fall slightly short of a majority of the delegates, and we’ll have a multi-ballot Republican convention for the first time since 1948. (The last time for the Democrats was 1952.)

To avoid this, Trump has to not just meet expectations in all of the coming states, but exceed them by just a little bit. With the drumbeat of perceived problems and missteps Trump has had in the last few weeks, this may seem unlikely. It may seem that Trump coming in below the current expectations is more likely. There has even been some talk that Trump has peaked and the long anticipated Trump collapse has now started.

A few weeks ago FiveThirtyEight projected Trump to get 25 of the 42 delegates in Wisconsin. The six Trump actually got is a long way from 25. That certainly seems to indicate we might be seeing a Trump collapse.

But wait… in the New York Times Nate Cohn gave Trump’s “expected” popular vote result in Wisconsin based on demographics and previous history as 35%. What was the actual result? 35.1%. That means that compared to where he was before, Trump’s performance didn’t actually constitute any sort of collapse. Trump is not in freefall. Instead, Trump came in pretty much where he was expected to in the popular vote.

So why the shellacking in delegates? It seems like this is due more to Cruz doing better than expected than to Trump doing worse than expected. The way this lined up in Wisconsin, it gave Cruz the overwhelming delegate win.

But this may or may not translate into other states. New York is not Wisconsin.

We will have some more information from Colorado this weekend and Wyoming next weekend. Trump is not expected to do very well in either, but we can look for clues in terms of if he meets or exceeds the projections there. But the next big bunch of delegates is April 19th in New York where Trump is expected to do very well. Then a lot of East coast states where Trump is also favored. But the question is not just “does Trump win” it is “does Trump win by enough”.

Right now, we are still in the zone where an outright Trump win is possible. But it requires Trump to improve on his performance so far, at a time where it seems like he is holding steady, but not really gaining ground. And despite not really taking aim at him until way later than many people thought they should have, the anti-Trump forces are now in full force, throwing everything they have at Trump. Improving his performance to the 55.22% of delegates average he needs to win outright may be a very tall order.

It may be slightly too soon to say that we are definitely going to have a multi-ballot contested convention… but the odds seem to be getting better by the day. And the chances that we will have some sort of craziness… the result of the first ballot determined by uncommitted delegates… or convention floor fights on rules changes or delegate credentialing that might impact the voting… seems to be very likely indeed.

So if you are a political junkie, go ahead and book July 18th to July 21st as days off from work, because there will almost certainly be fireworks of some sort, and you’ll want to be at home keeping up with the craziness minute by minute.

Right?

Or is that just me? :-)

[Update 2016-04-08 18:09 UTC – Results from Colorado’s 7th Congressional district in. Cruz +3. This doesn’t substantially change the analysis above.]

[Update 2016-04-09 16:24 UTC – Results from Colorado’s 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 5th Congressional districts: Cruz +12. Cruz has completely shut out Trump in Colorado’s 7 congressional districts. The statewide delegates will be determined later today. With the changes so far in Colorado, Trump now needs 56.20% of the remaining delegates to win.]

Note: This post is an update based on the data on ElectionGraphs.com. Election Graphs tracks both a poll based estimate of the Electoral College and a numbers based look at the Delegate Races. All of the charts and graphs seen in this post are from that site. Additional graphs, charts and raw data can be found there. All charts above are clickable to go to the current version of the detail page the chart is from, which may contain more up to date information than the snapshots on this page, which were current as of the time of this post. Follow @ElectionGraphs on Twitter or like Election Graphs on Facebook to see announcements of updates or to join the conversation. For those interested in individual general election poll updates, follow @ElecCollPolls on Twitter for all the polls as they are added.

Democrats: Sanders wins Wisconsin… and falls further behind

Sanders won Wisconsin. Sanders got 48 delegates to Clinton’s 38. That’s 55.8% of the delegates.

Add in superdelegates and other changes since Washington, Hawaii and Alaska and it becomes Sanders +48.5, Clinton +44. That’s 52.4% for Sanders.

But Sanders needed 67.0% of the delegates to actually get closer to the nomination given that the pool of remaining delegates is dwindling. So the percentage of the remaining delegates Sanders needs to catch up and win increases despite the win.

chart-99

Before Washington, Hawaii, and Alaska, Sanders needed 67.84% of the remaining delegates to win. After his big wins in those contests, this declined to 67.03%. We’re now back to 67.76%. Sanders hasn’t lost all the ground he won, but he has lost most of it.

Winning states isn’t enough. To catch up Sanders would have to be routinely winning by massive margins. That hasn’t been happening.

In recent posts, I’ve also included calculations for an “if superdelegates didn’t exist” scenario. Even these show a very hard road for Sanders. Recently even some Sanders surrogates have started to acknowledge that catching Clinton in pledged delegates via primaries and caucuses may be a near impossible task.

Now the optimistic scenario for the Sanders camp seems to be that while they don’t catch Clinton in pledged delegates, they win so many states, are close enough, and have so much “momentum” that superdelegates going to Sanders would give him the nomination at the convention. Just a few weeks ago Sanders supporters were saying that superdelegates overturning the pledged delegate results would be a travesty of justice… but things change I guess.

We now essentially have even the Sanders camp saying the right way to look at the race is to include the superdelegates and their preferences. Because it is clear that any possible path to victory involves superdelegates.

Given that, there are about 207 superdelegates who have not yet expressed any preference that Sanders can woo. Just like delegates from primaries and caucuses, to be on a pace to catch up and win, Sanders needs to get over 67.76% of those delegates to come over to his side. Or, of course, he can try to convince some of the about 474 superdelegates who have already said they are supporting Clinton to change their minds.

So far there have not been any significant superdelegate moves toward Sanders.

If that does start to happen, you will of course see it here.

[Update 2016-04-08 17:57 UTC – Superdelegate scan plus updated results in Arizona and Kansas yield a net change of Clinton +2, Sanders +2. This does not substantially change the analysis above.]

[Update 2016-04-09 15:53 UTC – Superdelegate scan, net change: Sanders +4, Clinton -1.]

[Update 2016-04-10 14:59 UTC – Superdelegate scan, net change: Clinton +1, Sanders +1.]

Note: This post is an update based on the data on ElectionGraphs.com. Election Graphs tracks both a poll based estimate of the Electoral College and a numbers based look at the Delegate Races. All of the charts and graphs seen in this post are from that site. Additional graphs, charts and raw data can be found there. All charts above are clickable to go to the current version of the detail page the chart is from, which may contain more up to date information than the snapshots on this page, which were current as of the time of this post. Follow @ElectionGraphs on Twitter or like Election Graphs on Facebook to see announcements of updates or to join the conversation. For those interested in individual general election poll updates, follow @ElecCollPolls on Twitter for all the polls as they are added.

Curmudgeon’s Corner: Anyone who raises their hand!

On the Curmudgeon’s Corner podcast this week, most of the show is of course about the presidential election. Ivan and Sam discuss everything you would expect about Clinton, Trump, Sanders and Cruz. And Sam ran a caucus! But in addition, there is plenty of other good stuff about hard drives, Microsoft Tay, being sick, the 5th amendment, and more!

Click below to listen or subscribe… then let us know your own thoughts!

CCCover20151125bw
Recorded 2016-03-31

Length this week – 1:51:50

 1-Click Subscribe in iTunes
 View Podcast in iTunes
 View Raw Podcast Feed
Download MP3 File
Follow the podcast on Facebook

Show Details:

  • (0:00:10-0:11:09) But First
    • Agenda
    • Sick People
    • Airplane WiFi
    • Work without Internet?
  • (0:11:45-0:34:25) Lightning Round
    • Microsoft Tay
    • Pakistan Bombing / Egyptian Hijacking
    • Obama Approval Ratings
    • Apple vs FBI
    • Phones not protected by 5th Amendment?
  • (0:35:28-0:56:10) Election 2016 – Democrats
    • Washington, Hawaii and Alaska
    • The Sanders Path
    • Sam Caucuses
    • Information Bubbles
  • (0:56:56-1:08:18) Hard Drive Bonus Segment
    • Ivan’s Problem
    • SSD vs  Spinning Platter
    • Wirecutter
    • Alex Interlude
    • Separating Media
    • Backups
  • (1:09:38-1:51:30) Election 2016 – Republicans
    • Wisconsin Delegate Allocation
    • Upcoming States
    • Trump Insanity
    • Third Parties and the Pledge
    • Vice Presidential Selection
    • The Trump Insider
    • Trump Presidential Style
    • Rubio keeping delegates
    • Autocorrect

Electoral College: Cruz continues to gain on Clinton

There have been polls in Michigan, Wisconsin and California since the last post.

There is no change for the front runners. The Clinton vs Trump summary remains the same, with anything from Clinton by 156 to Trump by 30 in the realm of the possible, with Clinton by 138 the “expected” result and the tipping point remaining at Clinton by 3.9%.

But the Wisconsin polls made a difference for Clinton vs Cruz:

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Four of the five polls used in the average now show a very tight Clinton vs Cruz race in Wisconsin. The average now has Clinton ahead by only 2.7%, and clearly it is only that high due to the oldest poll included in the average. So Wisconsin is added to the list of states that Cruz might win in his “best case” where he wins all the states he is ahead in, plus all the ones where he trails by less than 5%.

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With Wisconsin’s 10 electoral votes, Cruz’s best case increases from a 10 electoral vote win to a 30 electoral vote win, now matching Trump’s best case against Clinton. In fact, Cruz’s best and worst cases now match Trump exactly. Cruz does a bit better in the expected case because he leads in Iowa and North Carolina, while Trump does not.

Cruz has also been on a strengthening trend while Trump has been getting weaker. We will see if that continues.

222.4 days until polls start to close on Election 2016.

Note: This post is an update based on the data on ElectionGraphs.com. Election Graphs tracks both a poll based estimate of the Electoral College and a numbers based look at the Delegate Races. All of the charts and graphs seen in this post are from that site. Additional graphs, charts and raw data can be found there. All charts above are clickable to go to the current version of the detail page the chart is from, which may contain more up to date information than the snapshots on this page, which were current as of the time of this post. Follow @ElectionGraphs on Twitter or like Election Graphs on Facebook to see announcements of updates or to join the conversation. For those interested in individual general election poll updates, follow @ElecCollPolls on Twitter for all the polls as they are added.

Democrats: Huge Wins for Sanders… but…

Although the best delegate tallies are still estimates that will almost certainly change a bit before they are final, the general outline will not change. Sanders crushed Clinton in all three states that caucused on March 26th. With Washington, Hawaii and Alaska together, the delegate haul was 104 for Sanders to only 38 for Clinton.

Since the last update Sanders has also been on a roll gaining four new superdelegates (while Clinton got no new supers), and having four delegates move from Clinton to Sanders as results in states that voted earlier got finalized.

Between all that, since the 23rd the net change is Sanders +112, Clinton +34.

So Sanders got a whopping 76.71% of the delegates since the 23rd. That is well above the 67.70% he needed to improve his position in the race in terms of the % of the remaining delegates needed to win. So unlike some Sanders “wins” where he gets the most delegates but still just ends up in a worse position because he didn’t win by enough, this time Sanders supporters are fully justified in celebrating the win.

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See that downward slope right neat the end of the green line? That is the improvement in Sander’s position because of these three states. Despite all the states that Sanders has won, this has not happened often. Aside from days when a stray superdelegate committed to him or when states revised their results by a delegate here or there, the only previous times so far where Sanders has improved his position are February 9th when he won New Hampshire and March 6th when he won Maine. (OK, probably Democrats Abroad too.) This new result on March 26th swamps both of those in the magnitude of the improvement.

With all of the results and adjustments since Arizona, Idaho and Utah last week, Sanders goes from needing 67.70% of the remaining delegates to win, to needing only… 67.03%.

So… an improvement of…  0.67%.

So, uh… big improvement? Suddenly the Sanders path to victory is clear? Well, it is the biggest improvement in this metric Sanders has seen yet, but…

No.

March 26th was a big Sanders win. That should not be minimized. If he matched the March 26th performance in every contest from here to the end of the primary season, he would indeed catch up to Clinton and win. And the visibility of wins like the 26th may help Clinton seem weak, and may improve Sanders’ performance in future contests.

But the basic situation has not changed significantly. 67% of delegates is still an incredibly high bar. Sanders would have to consistently meet that bar for the rest of the race in order to win outright.

But wait you say, once again this is all including superdelegates. But surely if Sanders won in pledged delegates, the superdelegates wouldn’t deny him the win and would switch to Sanders en masse because to do otherwise would be unseemly? Well, I generally reject starting with that premise and say lets watch the superdelegates and see what they actually do.

But for the moment, as I did once before, let me run the numbers pretending superdelegates don’t exist.

With supers the totals right now are Clinton 1735, Sanders 1069.5, O’Malley 1

Without supers that becomes Clinton 1264, Sanders 1040.

Without supers there are 4050 delegates, and you need 2026 to have a majority.

Sanders would need 976 more delegates to have that majority of pledged delegates. There are 1746 more pledged delegates available.

That means Sanders would need 55.90% of the pledged delegates remaining to end the season with a majority of the pledged delegates.

That bar is a LOT lower than 67%. Consistently beating 67% seems close to unimaginable without a complete implosion. But 56%? Could you get to that just through some momentum, some positive press cycles and good campaigning? Maybe. It seems like it is on the outer edge of the possible given the history so far, but still possible.

If Sanders did succeed at that, he would still need to get a large number of Clinton superdelegates to defect in order to actually win. But Sanders has said he is ramping up his efforts to woo superdelegates. He has gone from saying superdelegates should be ignored, to acknowledging that any realistic path to a win involves getting superdelegates to vote for him too.

If superdelegates do start to defect, you will of course see it on the graphs here.

One last comparison, updating the one I did two weeks ago:

Screen Shot 2016-03-27 at 22.49.42747

Granting for the moment the premise that the results on the 26th are not an outlier, but are instead indicative of an inflection point in the race, you see that compared to Obama 2008, Sanders starts his “turn” on the graph later (at about 56% rather than at about 49%) and that he is much much further behind that Obama was. Just barely past this point in 2008 is when Obama took the delegate lead. Sanders is far from that.

Meanwhile, Clinton is in a much stronger position than Obama was until very nearly the end.

If this is a “turn”, and Sanders drives his line down and eventually wins, it will be one of the largest come from behind wins in modern times. This is not impossible, but it is still highly unlikely.

Wisconsin is next on April 5th. Right now the RCP poll average there has Clinton 46.5% to Sanders 44.0%. If that average plays out and assuming a roughly even distribution of support throughout the congressional districts in the state, it would mean about 44 delegates for Clinton to 42 delegates for Sanders.

If that happened, Sanders would then need 67.87% of the remaining delegates to win, completely undoing the gains he made with Washington, Hawaii and Alaska.

Now, Sanders may get a boost of his recent wins and do better than the current poll average indicates. He may even win Wisconsin. The question though is not if he wins, but if he wins it by enough to actually be on a pace to catch up to Clinton before things are over. Right now, that means he needs 58 of the 86 delegates available from the Wisconsin primary.

We shall see.

[Update 2016-04-01 16:10 UTC – Superdelegate scan nets Clinton +3, Sanders +2.5. This does not significantly change the analysis above.]

[Update 2016-04-01 16:55 UTC – I found an update from Michigan which I had logged on March 10th, but had an error in it, so the totals in Michigan in the state detail table were correct, but that update wasn’t included in the national totals. Fixed now. Net change from that: Clinton +2, Sanders -2. This also does not significantly change the analysis above.]

[Update 2016-04-05 16:29 UTC – Superdelegate scan: Clinton +1. Note because Bill Clinton said something about how he would support Sanders at the convention if Sanders won, just like he supported Obama in 2008, some people are saying he should be listed as an Uncommitted superdelegate instead of a Clinton superdelegate. I don’t buy this at the moment and am continuing to list Bill Clinton as supporting Hillary Clinton.]

Note: This post is an update based on the data on ElectionGraphs.com. Election Graphs tracks both a poll based estimate of the Electoral College and a numbers based look at the Delegate Races. All of the charts and graphs seen in this post are from that site. Additional graphs, charts and raw data can be found there. All charts above are clickable to go to the current version of the detail page the chart is from, which may contain more up to date information than the snapshots on this page, which were current as of the time of this post. Follow @ElectionGraphs on Twitter or like Election Graphs on Facebook to see announcements of updates or to join the conversation. For those interested in individual general election poll updates, follow @ElecCollPolls on Twitter for all the polls as they are added.

[Edit 2016-03-28 00:05 UTC – Fixed one place I had Sanders’ name instead of Clinton.]

Electoral College: Some good news for Cruz, Mixed news for Rubio

Yes, all the attention is on South Carolina and Super Tuesday, but time for a quick electoral college update from recent poll updates. In the last batch of polls were new matchup results in Florida, Georgia, Wisconsin and West Virginia. These resulted in a few notable changes.

Clinton vs Trump

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Well, actually, once again there was no significant update in the Clinton vs Trump race, but in this transitional phase where we are still getting polling for folks other than the frontrunners, I’ll mention the frontrunner status when there is a post highlighting changes with other candidate pairs. Trump’s lead in the average in Georgia actually dropped from 10.1% to 9.5% changing Georgia from “Solid Trump” to “Strong Trump” in my categorization, but this really doesn’t make any difference. Georgia isn’t in play at the moment. The situation remains that anything from Clinton winning by 156 to Trump winning by 102 is within the realm of the possible, and Clinton winning by 50 is the “expected” result if all the states go where their averages are currently pointing.

Clinton vs Cruz

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Cruz improves a bit in Florida against Clinton, but not enough to change categories. Florida was however the tipping point state, so this also moves:

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Cruz’s upward tipping point trend continues. Just a little bit further, and the Clinton vs Cruz race might actually look competitive!

(Reminder, the tipping point represents the margin in the state that would put the winner “over the top” if you ranked the states by their candidate preference. It is a good measure of how much the candidate who is behind would have to change national public opinion to flip the result and win.)

Clinton vs Rubio

This matchup had notable changes caused by the polls in two different states. First up, Florida:

chart (92)

The state didn’t change status. It was “Weak Clinton” before, and remains “Weak Clinton”. But as with Cruz, Florida was the tipping point state, and so the tipping point changes as well.

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By this metric Rubio peaked in November and has been declining ever since. A Clinton vs Rubio matchup still looks incredibly close though. Clinton is only ahead here by 0.8%.

So this was good for Clinton. But there was also a change in Wisconsin that was good for Rubio:

chart (94)

All the recent polls have shown Wisconsin as a close state, whereas older polls had it Strong or Solid Clinton, and therefore the average has been moving up toward Rubio. With today’s update, it moves from “Strong Clinton” to “Weak Clinton”. This puts it in play for Rubio and improves his best case:

chart (95)

There are now ELEVEN close states in the Clinton vs Rubio contest, accounting for 141 electoral votes, which is quite a swing! Everything from Clinton by 126 to Rubio by 156 is now “in the bubble”. Clinton remains a slight favorite, winning by 12 electoral votes if all the states ended up following current poll results. But this is a tiny margin. Clinton vs Rubio remains essentially a tied race, with Florida’s 29 electoral votes at the tipping point.

And that is where things stand at the end of February.

254.9 days left until general election polls start to close.

Note: This post is an update based on the data on ElectionGraphs.com. Election Graphs tracks both a poll based estimate of the Electoral College and a numbers based look at the Delegate Races. All of the charts and graphs seen in this post are from that site. Additional graphs, charts and raw data can be found there. All charts above are clickable to go to the current version of the detail page the chart is from, which may contain more up to date information than the snapshots on this page, which were current as of the time of this post. Follow @ElectionGraphs on Twitter or like Election Graphs on Facebook to see announcements of updates or to join the conversation. For those interested in individual general election poll updates, follow @ElecCollPolls on Twitter for all the polls as they are added.