Electoral Vote Predictor 2004:   Kerry 322   Bush 205

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Battleground states
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dark blue Strong Kerry (120)
light blue Weak Kerry (123)
white and blue Barely Kerry (79)
white Exactly tied (11)
white and red Barely Bush (11)
light red Weak Bush (59)
dark red Strong Bush (135)
July 17 New polls: FL NC WI

News from the Votemaster

The big news today is that Wisconsin flipped again. A new American Research Group poll there gives Kerry a 6% lead in the Badger State. A new ARG poll in Florida confirms the earlier Survey USA poll that Kerry has a tiny lead there. Similarly, a Research 2000 poll in North Carolina confirms that even with Edwards on the ticket, Bush has a small lead there.

By looking at the map, the net effect of the Edwards bounce is beginning to become clear and it is approaching Karl Rove's worst-case nightmare scenario. Kerry is ahead in Pennsylvania and all the states north of it. He is also ahead in Florida, New Mexico, all the battleground states of the Midwest, and all the states on the Pacific Coast. The only battleground states Bush leads in are Nevada (2% lead) and West Virginia (8% lead) and these have only 10 electoral votes combined. Bush does have an unbreakable grip on the Great Plains states and the rest of the West, however, and a solid lead in most of the South. With the Democratic national convention starting in little over a week, all eyes will be on Kerry and Edwards until August, so it is unlikely Bush will recover the national lead any time soon. But vice-presidential bounces don't last more than a couple of weeks, so by August, things could change. Only this year with the olympics in August, politics may go on the back burner until the Republican national convention starts August 30 in New York.

This site is getting more popular by the day. If you type "electoral vote" to Google, we are number one. Thanks for all those links. But with popularity, comes e-mail, which is a mixed blessing. I do try to read and answer it all, but the volume is becoming a problem, hence one small request. The ***intention*** (not promise) is to get the daily updates online before 7 a.m. EDT so all you political junkies have a good reason to get out of bed in the morning. This means that new polls that come in during the course of the day will not be processed until the next morning. Morning newspapers have the same cycle. Please DO NOT send email about some new poll that just came in. I have many sources and will catch most polls the following morning. When the ARG Wisconsin poll was released yesterday, about 50 e-mails showed up promptly pointing it out. Not needed. All my regular sources (e.g., the premium parts of pollingreport.com, dcpoliticalreport.com, etc.) had it too. Of course, if a state poll is NOT listed here the next morning, then e-mail is welcome.

Speaking of e-mail, one reader brought up the issue of what would happen if every state divided its electoral votes in proportion to the popular vote, something it could do by simply passing a state law to that effect. Now that the 2000 election data is in spreadsheet form, it is easy to find out what would have happened in 2000 under such rules. Three new columns have been added to show the EVs for Gore, Bush, and Nader under this scenario. The result: nobody wins. Well, more specifically, nobody gets 270 electoral votes, in part due to minor parties. In California, for example, Gore's 53.4% yields 29 EVs, Bush's 41.7% yields 22 EVs, and Nader's 3.8% yields 2 EVs. The remaining 1.1% of the vote was scattered over a myriad of tiny parties, so nobody got the final EV. To actually introduce such a proportional system, a lot of attention would have to be paid to the formula for rounding. According to the constitution, if no candidate receives a majority of the EVs, the new House of Representatives chooses the president, with each state having one vote. In 2000, the Republicans controlled a majority of the state delegations, so Bush would have been chosen. Having the election go to the House is not hypothetical. It happened in 1800 and again in 1824.

And finally, there is a new cartoon of the week today.

To get the dates and sources for the polling data, click on the Excel spreadsheet at the top right. If you like this website, please link to it to improve its Google PageRank and tell your friends about it.

-- The votemaster Electoral college

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