According to former President Bill Clinton’s political director, the path to the White House for presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden is becoming clearer as polling shows that Donald Trump is hurting in some normally reliable Republican-leaning or pivotal swing states.
In the report, obtained by Axios, Doug Sosnik said the Rust Belt states already listed as key to both campaigns — Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin — are still in play but that Trump is in danger of losing at least two of the three, in part because of the coronavirus pandemic.
“Trump’s chance of winning Michigan, which he carried by 11,000 votes in 2016, has been significantly reduced by the impact of COVID-19 in the state, which has suffered the fourth most deaths in the country,” Axios reports. “Pennsylvania has almost been as hard hit as Michigan (fifth most deaths).”
According to the pollsters report, what should be concerning Trump’s campaign is voting trends showing, “Six states in the South and Southwest — Arizona, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Texas and Virginia — are in various stages of becoming blue states. Outside of Virginia, which has already become a blue state, Arizona is the state most likely to transition to a Democratic base state as early as November.”
With that in mind, Sosnik laid out Biden’s best path to the White House, according to Axios:.
- Michigan, Pennsylvania and Arizona: Biden wins all three states — his best option, given the political environment. (Map)
- Michigan and Pennsylvania + two congressional districts — Nebraska-02 and Maine-02. (Map)
- The Rust Belt: Biden wins Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. (Map)
- Michigan and the Sunbelt: Biden carries Michigan, Arizona and North Carolina. (Map)
- Florida +1: Biden carries Florida, getting him to 261 electoral votes. A win in any of the other battleground states would put him well past 270. (Map)
The report also notes:
- Make putting Michigan out of reach for Trump the top priority.
- Lock up Pennsylvania.
- Prioritize winning Arizona, Maine-02 and Nebraska-02.
- Focus remaining resources on Wisconsin, North Carolina and Florida.
You can read the whole report embedded at Axios.
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As Nicholas wrote, "Presidents live within a protective cocoon built and continually fortified for one purpose: keeping them alive. But inside the White House compound these days, Donald Trump seems rattled by what’s transpiring outside the windows of his historic residence."