US election late counting

What will Biden’s final popular vote margin be, will he win Arizona and Georgia, and what will the final House result be? Guest post by Adrian Beaumont.

1:00pm Wednesday Dave Wasserman’s current House count is 221 Democrats, 209 Republicans and five undecided. In four of the undecided races, Republicans lead, but there’s some hope for Democrats in New York’s 22nd. At the 2018 midterms, Democrats won the House by a 235-200 margin.

Biden now leads Trump in the popular vote by 50.9% to 47.2% with up to 1.8 million New York mail votes still to be counted. These will be very pro-Biden.

2:30pm Monday November 16 If anyone’s still following this thread, I’ve published a Conversation article about Biden’s narrow margin in the Electoral College tipping-point state (Wisconsin), and about explanations for why the polls understated Trump again. It’s plausible that coronavirus was a factor, because those who followed medical advice to stay home were more likely to respond to polls and be Democrats.

2:25pm In final Arizona results, Biden defeated Trump by 10,377 votes or 0.30%.

11:48am Sunday I posted yesterday about how Biden only won the “tipping-point” state by 0.6% despite his 306-232 Electoral College win, but it appears that post was lost with the site’s problems.

Democrats lead in the House by 218-203 with 14 seats uncalled. Eight of the uncalled races are in New York, where mail counting has been very slow. Mail votes will be very strong for Democrats, and they will win the three seats where they currently lead. Dave Wasserman thinks the Dem in New York’s 22nd has a real chance of overcoming the Rep’s lead once all mail is counted.

3:40pm Arizona CALLED for Biden after he won the latest batch of Maricopa county votes. He leads Trump by over 11,400 votes or 0.34%. That call takes Biden to a 290-217 Electoral College lead. The final two states, Georgia and North Carolina, will go to Biden and Trump respectively. Biden will win the Electoral College by 306-232.

3:00pm Friday In the past, late counting in states such as California and Arizona has been better for Democrats than election night results. The early mail has been pro-Republican, but the late mail has been better for Democrats. This election, it’s clear that Democrats were much keener to vote early, and so the normal pattern has been reversed. That’s why Fox News and the AP called Arizona prematurely.

There’s now a big scare for Democrats in New Jersey’s seventh district. The Republican is within 6,300 votes with almost 39,000 remaining. The Rep has been winning late counted votes by big enough margins to put the Dem in jeopardy. Dems will still retain a narrow House majority, but it’s way below expectations.

2:30pm Trump won a batch of 13,000 Maricopa county, Arizona votes by 9%, but there just aren’t enough votes left for him to overcome his current 11,600+ vote deficit in Arizona. Dave Wasserman has called it for Biden.

11:30am Thursday Both the Alaska and North Carolina Senate races were CALLED for Republicans today, taking them to a 50-48 lead with two Georgia runoffs on January 5. Alaska was also called for Trump, with North Carolina to follow soon.

5:00pm Biden currently leads in the national popular vote by over five million votes (50.8% to 47.4%).

4:57pm Democrats are just over the majority mark in the House, and lead Republicans by 218-201 with 16 still uncalled. Dave Wasserman sees it as 222 Democrats, 206 Republicans and seven undecided. Democrats are currently trailing in all seven undecided seats, but may be able to save one or two.

4:47pm In the Alaska Senate contest, the Republican is still up by 58-36 with 75% in. Mail was added today, but it didn’t break heavily Democratic enough. This will soone be called for the Republicans, as will the North Carolina Senate.

4:45pm Biden’s lead in Georgia (14,100 votes) is now greater than his lead in Arizona (12,800), though in percentage terms the Arizona lead is still bigger (0.38% vs 0.28%). I think there are under 50,000 votes left to count in Arizona.

10:45am Wednesday Biden’s lead over 12,600 in Georgia and 14,200 in Arizona.

2:07pm Biden currently leads Trump by 50.7% to 47.5% in the popular vote tracker. Democrats lead by 216-198 in the House with 21 races still uncalled.

1:38PM Trump won today’s batch of over 6k Maricopa county votes by 50-48. Biden maintains a lead just under 15,000 in Arizona. Meanwhile, Biden has extended his Georgia lead beyond 12,000 votes (0.25%).

11:50am Biden’s Arizona lead now under 15,000.

10:25am Tuesday Biden now leads by over 11,400 votes or 0.23% in Georgia and by 15,400 or 0.46% in Arizona. Biden’s lead has stretched to 2.7% in Nevada and to 0.67% in Pennsylvania.

11:06am Biden’s Arizona lead below 17,000 after a batch of about 13,500 votes from the pro-Trump Pinal county. But Pinal is likely almost finished counting.

10:35am Provisionals are padding Biden’s Georgia lead, now over 10,300 or 0.2%. In Pennsylvania, he leads by over 43,000. In Nevada, he leads by 2.4%.

10:30am Monday Biden’s lead in Arizona back over 20,000 votes after he won the latest batch from Maricopa county. This was a small batch of under 7,000 votes that split to Biden by 55-44. Provisionals, which are counted last, are probably much better for Biden than the late mail votes. Biden is very likely to win Arizona now.

Guest post by Adrian Beaumont, who joins us from time to time to provide commentary on elections internationally. Adrian is an honorary associate at the University of Melbourne. His work on electoral matters for The Conversation can be found here, and his own website is here.

Cook Political analyst Dave Wasserman has an excellent graphic for following the national presidential popular vote. As of Sunday afternoon, it had Joe Biden leading Donald Trump by 50.7% to 47.6%. That lead is certain to stretch over the coming weeks as there are far more votes left to be counted in Democratic strongholds like California and New York.

A related question is how far the Electoral College “tipping-point” state was from the national popular vote. With Biden’s lead dropping in Arizona even as it expands in Pennsylvania, it appears that Wisconsin will be the state that gave him 270 Electoral Votes. Biden only won Wisconsin by 0.6%, so it is already 2.5 points more favourable to Trump than nationally, and that gap will stretch further.

In Arizona, Biden’s lead is under 19,000 votes or 0.6% with 97% counted. While early mail ballots were pro-Biden, late mail is pro-Trump. Will Biden hold onto his lead? In Georgia, Biden now has a lead of over 9,000 or 0.2% with almost all votes counted. It is very unlikely that a recount will change that race. Trump will almost certainly win the other two uncalled states, North Carolina and Alaska.

Republicans will also almost certainly win the uncalled Senate races in North Carolina and Alaska, for a 50-48 Senate lead. Both Georgia Senate races are going to January 5 runoffs. Democrats would need to win both to tie the Senate at 50-50 and give Kamala Harris the casting vote.

Democrats lead in the House by 215 to 196 with 24 races uncalled. Eight of the uncalled races are in New York, where mail votes have not been counted and are likely to heavily favour Democrats. Republicans have gained a net of five House seats so far.

265 comments on “US election late counting”

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    The swing voters who switch between Republicans and Democrats (a comparatively small part of the electorate but of some significance in close races) will be far less strong in the mid-terms (unless Trump manages to get Republican state legislatures to overrule their states` voters and appoint Trump electors), with Trump not on the ballot and swing voter media downplaying Trump`s 2024 chances in the Republican primary. And the variable turnout portion of the Democratic electorate will be less inclined to turnout in the mid-terms than the variable turnout portion of the Republican electorate, as Biden will be better at inspiring Republican turnout than Democratic, once in office.

  2. I don’t think NC has been really a possibility for Biden for some days now…Same applies to Alaska….Where the US population is a bit thin on the ground so the hairy Republican flourishes. This generalisation, of course, does not ignore the States in the South whose population in some respects, are still fighting the Civil War….

  3. Wayne says:
    Friday, November 13, 2020 at 11:57

    “Breaking news this hour

    Our Great president Trump has won the US election by a landslide and will govern for another four years….”

    Wayne – you are such a card. You know which one.

    OUR great president?

    Perhaps Wayne can join Trumpy-jumpy in his alternate universe. It seems he is well on the way already.

    The truth is Trump did not win – or even get close – but then you know that already.

  4. I think Tom is correct here. It seems to me more likely that suburban voters will come home for the Republicans than Trump Democrats will come back to the Democrats.

    It depends on how it plays out of course. If Biden’s agenda is utterly foiled by Mitch McConnell and (heaven forfend) there is anothet government shutdown, the Democrat vote may hold up.

    Another point to be made, and this relates to Hugo’s post, is how difficult it is for Democrats to win the House, let alone the Senate. The Democratic vote is packed into urban electorates that are won by huge margins. Republicans have seats in rural areas that are still very safe but won with far fewer votes in total. Its not gerrymandering (North Carolina) excepted. Its just geography. The same problem vexes the Liberals in South Australia and Labor in Queensland federally.

  5. Jake Tapper
    Biden carries Arizona, flipping a longtime Republican stronghold – CNNPolitics


  6. The Lincoln Project have had their first review of the election, in some detail, state by state, and project their involvement in Georgia, and beyond. They have moved on from ‘Republicans for getting rid of Trump’, if it was ever that simple, to a Prodemocracy Movement, with a lot of work ahead, still.

    40 mins

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