Biden ahead by nearly 8 points in June expert survey

The Pollyvote has completed its third survey of elections experts to forecast the 2020 presidential election. In the survey, conducted from June 18-22, thirteen political science professors from a variety of U.S. universities predicted that Joe Biden will win the popular vote by nearly eight points.

The mean forecast is that Biden will garner 53.8% of the popular two-party vote, compared to 46.2% for President Trump. All but one experts expected Biden to win the popular vote, while one predicts a tie.

Compared to the expert forecasts from last month, Biden’s lead has almost doubled. Back then, the experts predicted Biden to gain 52.2% of the vote.

The combined PollyVote forecast is a bit more conservative but also sees a clear advantage for Joe Biden. The PollyVote currently predicts Biden to gain 52.3% of the two-party vote.

PollyVote thanks the experts who participated in this round, namely

  1. Alexa Bankert (University of Georgia)
  2. Andrea Benjamin (University of Oklahoma)
  3. John Coleman (University of Minnesota)
  4. Scott Blinder (University of Massachusetts Amherst)
  5. George Edwards (Texas A&M University)
  6. Sarah Fulton (Texas A&M University)
  7. Sandy Maisel (Colby College)
  8. Michael Martinez (University of Florida)
  9. David Redlawsk (University of Delaware)
  10. Larry Sabato (University of Virginia)
  11. Mary Stegmaier (University of Missouri)
  12. Michael Tesler (University of California, Irvine)
  13. Charles Walcott (Virginia Tech)

Biden’ lead remains at 4 points in May expert survey

The Pollyvote has completed its second survey of elections experts to forecast the 2020 presidential election. In the survey, conducted from May 15-18, twelve political science professors from a variety of U.S. universities predicted that Joe Biden will win the popular vote by roughly four points.

The mean forecast is that Biden will garner 52.2% of the popular two-party vote, compared to 47.8% for President Trump. Eleven experts expect Biden to win the popular vote, while one expert predicts a Trump victory.

This forecast is nearly identical to last month, when the combined expert forecast was that Biden would receive 52.3% of the two-party vote.

PollyVote thanks the experts who participated in this round, namely

  1. Alexa Bankert (University of Georgia)
  2. Andrea Benjamin (University of Oklahoma)
  3. John Coleman (University of Minnesota)
  4. Scott Blinder (University of Massachusetts Amherst)
  5. George Edwards (Texas A&M University)
  6. Sarah Fulton (Texas A&M University)
  7. Sandy Maisel (Colby College)
  8. David Redlawsk (University of Delaware)
  9. Larry Sabato (University of Virginia)
  10. Mary Stegmaier (University of Missouri)
  11. Michael Tesler (University of California, Irvine)
  12. Charles Walcott (Virginia Tech)

First expert survey for 2020: Biden leads Trump by nearly 5 points in popular vote

The Pollyvote has completed its first survey of elections experts to forecast the 2020 presidential election. In the survey, conducted from April 16-20, twelve political science professors from a variety of U.S. universities predicted that Joe Biden will win the popular vote.

The mean forecast is that Biden will garner 52.3% of the popular two-party vote, compared to 47.7% for President Trump. Eleven of the twelve experts expect Biden to win the popular vote, while one expert predicts a Trump victory.

This is the fifth presidential election campaign in which an expert panel has been formed by the Pollyvote to forecast the election outcome. The first surveys, those in 2004, did not begin as early as the current survey, but those in 2008, 2012, and 2016 did.

  • In 2008, the March survey predicted Obama to gain 52.4%, who eventually received 53.7% of the two-party vote; a forecast error of 1.3 percentage points.
  • In 2012, the April survey predicted Obama to gain 51.2%, a forecast that was off by 0.8 points, as Obama won 52.0% of the two-party vote.
  • In 2016, the March survey predicted Hillary Clinton to gain 53.1% of the two-party vote. She ended up winning 51.1% – an error of 2 percentage points.

Thus, even with this long lead time, the expert survey always correctly predicted the popular vote winner, and missed the final result on average by only 1.4 percentage points.  

As we see, the experts have considerable expertise in forecasting elections. Watch this space for the next report from the experts in about a month. 

Also, stay tuned for the first PollyVote forecast, which will be released in a few days. 

PollyVote thanks the experts who participated in this round, namely

  1. Alexa Bankert (University of Georgia)
  2. Andrea Benjamin (University of Oklahoma)
  3. Scott Blinder (University of Massachusetts Amherst)
  4. George Edwards (Texas A&M University)
  5. Sarah Fulton (Texas A&M University)
  6. Sandy Maisel (Colby College)
  7. Michael Martinez (University of Florida)
  8. David Redlawsk (University of Delaware)
  9. Larry Sabato (University of Virginia)
  10. Mary Stegmaier (University of Missouri)
  11. Michael Tesler (University of California, Irvine)
  12. Charles Walcott (Virginia Tech)

Political scientists predict Clinton will win 334 electoral votes, compared to 204 for Donald Trump

The PollyVote team has conducted the fourth and final round of its state-level expert survey. According to the forecasts of 638 political scientists, Hillary Clinton will win 334 Electoral Votes, compared to 204 for Donald Trump.

This Electoral College prediction thus differs from the results of the previous survey round,  when the experts’ aggregate forecast was that Clinton would gain 358 Electoral Votes, compared to 180 for Trump. The difference is due to Iowa and Ohio, which the experts now see leaning towards the Republicans. For Arizona, the experts predict essentially a pure tossup in both median winning probabilities and vote shares. However, since the average forecast for Clinton’s vote share is slightly above 50%, Arizona is called for the Democrats.

The following map visualizes the experts’ median estimates regarding Clinton’s chance of winning each state.

Nebraska and Maine deserve special attention, since these two states allocate two Electoral Votes to the popular vote winner plus one each to the popular vote winner in each Congressional district. The experts predict that all districts will go with the state-wide popular with two exceptions.

  • In Nebraska’s 2nd district, the Democratic candidate is expected to win 51.0% of the two-party vote.
  • In Maine’s 2nd district, the Republican candidate is expected to win the popular vote with a two-party vote share of 50.6%.

Method

We reached out to political scientists across the country and asked them two short questions:

  1. What share of the vote do you expect the nominees to receive in your home state?
  2. What do you think is Hillary Clinton’s chance of winning the election in your home state?

For experts who regard Nebraska or Maine as their home state, we additionally asked them to predict the outcome in each congressional district.

The survey was conducted from November 6 to 7. A total of 638 experts made estimates as requested. The number of experts by state ranged from 2 to 44. The table below shows the number of respondents per state as well as the median answer for each question.

    Clinton’s predicted
State N Chance of winning Two-party vote
District of Columbia 16 100% 90.4
Hawaii 2 100% 72.3
Vermont 11 99% 67.0
Maryland 22 99% 63.2
Massachusetts 17 99% 66.7
New York 23 99% 63.2
California 21 99% 62.4
Illinois 23 99% 57.9
Connecticut 19 99% 57.9
New Jersey 4 99% 58.5
Washington 7 98% 56.5
Oregon 8 98% 56.8
Delaware 13 98% 62.8
Rhode Island 6 97% 58.8
New Mexico 4 97% 53.0
Minnesota 13 95% 53.2
Maine 8 90% 53.7
Wisconsin 14 89% 52.7
Virginia 44 85% 52.7
Nevada 8 85% 52.4
Michigan 12 83% 51.6
Pennsylvania 19 80% 52.1
Colorado 10 71% 52.0
New Hampshire 10 68% 52.7
Florida 19 55% 50.6
North Carolina 23 55% 51.1
Arizona 13 50% 50.0
Ohio 15 48% 49.5
Iowa 18 43% 48.9
Alaska 4 30% 47.0
Georgia 24 29% 47.6
Missouri 12 25% 47.5
Utah 15 15% 44.4
South Carolina 12 15% 46.3
Kansas 9 15% 43.3
Alabama 6 13% 37.9
Indiana 16 10% 44.2
Texas 22 10% 45.7
Kentucky 5 8% 41.2
Montana 5 5% 41.6
South Dakota 3 5% 42.1
Louisiana 8 5% 43.2
North Dakota 6 4% 36.6
Arkansas 8 3% 41.1
Mississippi 12 2% 42.0
Idaho 15 1% 39.0
Tennessee 5 1% 42.1
West Virginia 9 0% 35.5
Nebraska 5 0% 42.1
Wyoming 4 0% 28.8
Oklahoma 11 0% 30.9

Final expert survey: Clinton will win by 4.4 points

The PollyVote team has completed its 13th and final survey of elections experts to forecast the 2016 presidential election. In this survey, conducted between November 6 and 7, 12 academics from a variety of colleges and universities responded.

As in previous rounds, all respondents expect a Clinton win. However, her lead has narrowed again compared to the results of the previous survey conducted a week ago.

Whereas, in late-October, the experts expected that Clinton will win the popular vote by more than 5.5 points, the new average forecast is half a percentage point lower, at 52.2% of the two-party vote (or about a 4.4-point margin). The individual forecasts ranged from 51.0% to 53.3%, with a standard deviation of only 0.8 points.

Polly thanks the experts who participated in this round, namely

  1. Randall Adkins (University of Nebraska Omaha)
  2. Lonna Rae Atkeson (University of New Mexico)
  3. John Geer (Vanderbilt University)
  4. Sandy Maisel (Colby College)
  5. Michael Martinez (University of Florida)
  6. Thomas Patterson (Harvard University)
  7. Gerald Pomper (Rutgers University)
  8. David Redlawsk (University of Delaware)
  9. Larry Sabato (University of Virginia)
  10. Michael Tesler (University of California, Irvine)
  11. Charles Walcott (Virginia Tech)

and one expert who preferred to remain anonymous.

Experts agree: Clinton will win

The PollyVote team has completed its 12th survey of elections experts to forecast the 2016 presidential election. In this survey, conducted between October 29 and 31, 13 academics from a variety of colleges and universities responded.

As in previous rounds, all respondents expect a Clinton win. However, her lead has narrowed substantially compared to the results of the previous survey conducted two weeks ago.

Whereas, in mid-October, the experts expected that Clinton will win the popular vote by more than nine points, the new average forecast is two percentage points lower, at 52.7% of the two-party vote (or about a 5.5-point margin). The individual forecasts ranged from 51.6% to 54.8%, with a standard deviation of only 0.8 points.

Polly thanks the experts who participated in this round, namely

  1. Randall Adkins (University of Nebraska Omaha)
  2. Lonna Rae Atkeson (University of New Mexico)
  3. George Edwards (Texas A&M University)
  4. Keith Gaddie (University of Oklahoma)
  5. John Geer (Vanderbilt University)
  6. Sandy Maisel (Colby College)
  7. Michael Martinez (University of Florida)
  8. Thomas Patterson (Harvard University)
  9. Gerald Pomper (Rutgers University)
  10. David Redlawsk (University of Delaware)
  11. Larry Sabato (University of Virginia)
  12. Michael Tesler (University of California, Irvine)
  13. Charles Walcott (Virginia Tech)

State-wide survey of political scientists: Clinton now at 358 electoral votes

The PollyVote team has conducted the third round of its state-level expert survey. According to the forecasts of 673 political scientists, Hillary Clinton will win 358 Electoral Votes, compared to 180 for Donald Trump.

This Electoral College prediction thus differs from the results of the first and second survey rounds,  when the experts’ aggregate forecast was that Clinton would gain 347 Electoral Votes, compared to 191 for Trump. The difference is due to Arizona (with its 11 Electoral Votes), which the experts now see leaning slightly towards the Democrats.

The following map visualizes the experts’ median estimates regarding Clinton’s chance of winning each state.

Nebraska and Maine deserve special attention, since these two states allocate two Electoral Votes to the popular vote winner plus one each to the popular vote winner in each Congressional district. The experts predict that all districts will go with the state-wide popular with two exceptions.

  • In Nebraska’s 2nd district, the Democratic candidate is expected to win 50.8% of the two-party vote.
  • In Maine’s 2nd district, the Republican candidate is expected to win the popular vote with a two-party vote share of 51.0%.

Method

We reached out to political scientists across the country and asked them two short questions:

  1. What share of the vote do you expect the nominees to receive in your home state?
  2. What do you think is Hillary Clinton’s chance of winning the election in your home state?

For experts who regard Nebraska or Maine as their home state, we additionally asked them to predict the outcome in each congressional district.

The survey was conducted from October 15 to 19. A total of 673 experts made estimates as requested. The number of experts by state ranged from 2 to 39. The table below shows the number of respondents per state as well as the median answer for each question.

Clinton’s predicted
State N Chance of winning Two-party vote
District of Columbia 15 100% 93.8
Vermont 9 100% 67.4
Hawaii 2 100% 76.5
Maryland 26 100% 67.0
New Mexico 5 100% 59.0
Massachusetts 14 100% 67.6
New York 26 99% 65.2
California 23 99% 63.8
Rhode Island 5 99% 61.1
Washington 12 99% 60.3
Illinois 24 99% 59.7
Connecticut 21 99% 62.4
Oregon 9 95% 57.8
New Jersey 5 95% 63.2
Minnesota 18 95% 55.3
Michigan 12 91% 54.3
Delaware 11 90% 63.2
Wisconsin 14 90% 53.9
Virginia 39 90% 56.0
Pennsylvania 20 90% 54.3
Colorado 8 88% 54.9
Maine 14 84% 54.4
New Hampshire 14 80% 54.2
Nevada 5 75% 53.8
Florida 22 73% 51.6
North Carolina 24 65% 51.3
Ohio 12 58% 51.4
Iowa 19 52% 50.5
Arizona 16 50% 50.5
Missouri 11 45% 47.8
Utah 13 40% 47.6
Georgia 26 39% 48.4
Alaska 5 38% 45.8
South Carolina 14 25% 47.0
Indiana 15 20% 46.4
Texas 19 20% 46.7
Kansas 11 15% 46.0
Montana 5 15% 46.2
Kentucky 4 14% 41.5
Arkansas 12 11% 43.2
South Dakota 6 9% 40.3
North Dakota 6 7% 42.0
West Virginia 9 7% 37.6
Mississippi 14 7% 44.7
Alabama 5 5% 38.9
Louisiana 11 5% 40.9
Idaho 14 5% 37.8
Tennessee 8 4% 43.3
Nebraska 4 3% 42.2
Wyoming 4 1% 30.0
Oklahoma 13 0% 37.5

Clinton at new record high in PollyVote.com expert survey

The PollyVote team has completed its 11th survey of elections experts to forecast the national vote in the 2016 presidential election. In this survey, conducted between October 13 and 15, and thus after the second debate, 14 academics from a variety of colleges and universities responded.

As in the previous round, all respondents expect a Clinton win. However, her lead has widened substantially, to a new record high.

Whereas, in late September, the experts expected that Clinton will win the popular vote by 4 points, the new average forecast is 2.5 percentage points higher, at 54.7% of the two-party vote (or about a 9-point margin). The individual forecasts ranged from 53.3% to 57.4%, with a standard deviation of 1.4 points.

Polly thanks the experts who participated in this round, namely

  1. Randall Adkins (University of Nebraska Omaha)
  2. Lonna Rae Atkeson (University of New Mexico)
  3. John Coleman (University of Minnesota)
  4. George Edwards (Texas A&M University)
  5. Keith Gaddie (University of Oklahoma)
  6. John Geer (Vanderbilt University)
  7. Sandy Maisel (Colby College)
  8. Michael Martinez (University of Florida)
  9. Thomas Patterson (Harvard University)
  10. Gerald Pomper (Rutgers University)
  11. David Redlawsk (University of Delaware)
  12. Larry Sabato (University of Virginia)
  13. Michael Tesler (University of California, Irvine)
  14. Charles Walcott (Virginia Tech)

Experts predict Clinton will win popular vote by 4 points

The PollyVote team has completed its 10th survey of elections experts to forecast the 2016 presidential election. In this survey, conducted between September 28 and 30, and thus after the first presidential debate, 13 academics from a variety of colleges and universities responded.

Similar to the previous round, all respondents expect a Clinton win. However, her lead has narrowed substantially.

Whereas, in late August, the experts expected that Clinton will win the popular vote by 7 points, the new average forecast is 1.3 percentage points lower, at 52.2% of the two-party vote (or about a 4-point margin). The individual forecasts ranged from 51.6% to 53.7%, with a standard deviation of only 0.7 points.

 

Polly thanks the experts who participated in this round, namely

  1. Randall Adkins (University of Nebraska Omaha)
  2. Lonna Rae Atkeson (University of New Mexico)
  3. Keith Gaddie (University of Oklahoma)
  4. John Geer (Vanderbilt University)
  5. Sandy Maisel (Colby College)
  6. Michael Martinez (University of Florida)
  7. Thomas Patterson (Harvard University)
  8. Gerald Pomper (Rutgers University)
  9. David Redlawsk (University of Delaware)
  10. Larry Sabato (University of Virginia)
  11. Michael Tesler (University of California, Irvine)
  12. Charles Walcott (Virginia Tech)

and one expert who preferred to remain anonymous.

Survey of political scientists: Clinton will win 347 electoral votes

The PollyVote team has conducted the second round of its state-level expert survey. According to the experts’ judgment, Hillary Clinton will win 347 electoral votes, compared to 191 for Donald Trump.

This Electoral College forecast is similar to the previous survey’s results, although Clinton’s lead has considerably narrowed in a number of states, particularly Florida, North Carolina, Iowa, Ohio, and Nevada. That said, even if Clinton lost all five states, she would still end up with 273 electoral votes, three more than necessary to win the election.

The following map visualizes the experts’ median estimates regarding Clinton’s chance of winning each state.

In comparison, the latest PollyVote forecast, which also incorporates the results from the expert survey, predicts Clinton to gain 314 electoral votes, compared to 224 for Trump. This difference results from different forecasts for Ohio and North Carolina. While the experts predict Clinton to prevail in these states, the combined PollyVote forecasts currently favors Trump.

Method

We reached out to political scientists across the country and asked them two short questions:

  1. What share of the vote do you expect the nominees to receive in your home state?
  2. What do you think is Hillary Clinton’s chance of winning the election in your home state?

The survey was conducted from September 19 to 22. A total of 653 experts made estimates as requested. The number of experts by state ranged from 2 to 35. The table at the end of this post shows the number of respondents per state as well as the median answer for each question.

Clinton’s predicted
State N Chance of winning Two-party vote
District of Columbia 13 100% 94.6
Vermont 9 100% 66.7
Hawaii 2 100% 69.9
New York 25 99% 64.2
Massachusetts 20 99% 66.7
Maryland 26 99% 63.6
California 23 99% 62.2
Rhode Island 8 97% 62.7
Washington 11 96% 59.1
Illinois 25 95% 60.4
Delaware 11 95% 60.6
Connecticut 21 95% 60.3
Oregon 11 93% 64.0
New Jersey 5 90% 57.4
New Mexico 4 87% 59.6
Minnesota 17 85% 57.4
Colorado 9 80% 57.8
Wisconsin 14 78% 55.6
Virginia 35 75% 56.0
Pennsylvania 15 75% 56.9
Maine 12 75% 54.8
Michigan 14 70% 54.7
New Hampshire 16 64% 55.1
Florida 16 54% 52.7
North Carolina 22 54% 51.9
Nevada 5 52% 51.2
Ohio 9 51% 52.7
Iowa 15 51% 52.8
Alaska 3 45% 43.4
Arizona 19 40% 48.4
Missouri 11 40% 48.9
Georgia 20 35% 48.6
Arkansas 10 30% 44.2
Indiana 14 18% 48.6
Kansas 8 13% 46.1
Texas 24 13% 44.0
South Carolina 13 10% 45.2
North Dakota 5 10% 43.0
Utah 18 10% 43.6
Kentucky 4 10% 44.4
Wyoming 5 8% 44.0
Alabama 7 5% 40.4
West Virginia 8 5% 37.8
Montana 5 5% 47.7
Mississippi 15 5% 44.1
Louisiana 12 5% 43.2
Tennessee 12 3% 42.1
South Dakota 4 3% 42.2
Nebraska 3 2% 45.5
Idaho 11 1% 34.5
Oklahoma 9 1% 31.7