Another election day…another election prediction to make me look extremely stupid on Wednesday morning.
Couple notes about my predictions: a full list of my predictions can be seen here (2016-pool), including select Governors, Senators, and House races.
Final Prediction: Electoral College Hillary 303, Trump 235. Percentage: Hillary 48%, Trump 44%, Johnson 4%, Stein 1%, McMullin <1%.
After 4 years since the last campaign, and about $2 billion in spending in a campaign running almost two years…we see almost no change since the 2012 map. There are some key differences though: Trump, according to my prediction, outperforms Romney and wins Ohio, Iowa, and the single elector from Maine, which raises the Republican Electoral haul from 206 to 235. On the other hand, I predict Hillary Clinton only gets 48% of the vote versus 44% for Trump…meaning both candidates are three points weaker than their predecessors from 2012.
If there are any surprises from this map, I suspect they would occur in ranking of most to least likely as follows: New Hampshire (which is on a razor’s edge), Maine 3rd, Florida (where polls have been narrowing for weeks) and Nevada. Note that Trump would have to win Florida and another state to win.
Of those, the most troublesome is Nevada. Trump was competitive in that state the entire cycle, and actually leads in the polling average as of today. However, early voting (reported beautifully by Jon Ralston) shows that Trump is getting overwhelmed largely by huge Hispanic turnout. Trump did motivate voters…but the voters he likely motivated more than any were Hispanics, who are not turning out 8:2 against him. He could still win the state, but would have to dramatically outperform past Republicans (even in midterm cycles) to beat Hillary.
Florida, if my prediction holds, is also going to be a teachable moment. Marco Rubio is well on his way to a comfortable win in the state, all the while having to drag Trump across the finish line. There is plenty of evidence now that Trump is causing negative coat tails for Rubio, would without Trump likely wins by double digits. If Trump loses, the Hispanics in both Florida and Nevada will have spoken loudly.
As for the US Senate
Prediction: GOP 51, Democrats 49.
This is as close as you get, and there are several true tossups. GOP looks like it is headed for a loss in Nevada for Harry Reid’s seat, which is heartbreaking because this was a winnable contest. Rubio and Portman appear safe.
Ayotte’s race in New Hampshire is going to be by a razor-thin margin, as is (surprisingly) Blunt in Missouri and Young vs. Bayh in Indiana. I think GOP is going to get crushed in Wisconsin, Illinois, and possibly Pennsylvania. Any single shift changes this, but right now I have the GOP holding the Senate…which is something I wouldn’t have thought possible back in June. That said, wouldn’t surprise me much if Ayotte or Young lost by the slimmest of margins.
GOP is going to hold the House…comfortably. They are going to take some major losses (again, see my predictions, I am predicting a net pickup of 12 Democrat seats) but I predict it ends up around GOP 233, Democrats 202. Pretty remarkable that even in this huge Democrat year, Democrats are nowhere close to retaking the House.