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VCCzar's 2020 Election Biden Victory Checklist


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I've made my Election Day checklist. Here's how it works:

The below lists the key counties in determining if Biden is winning over voters that wouldn't vote Clinton. Obviously, Biden's margins vs Trump have to be better than Clinton's margins vs Trump in states that Clinton did not win. I'll be looking at these counties below on election day. 

I am 99.9% sure Biden will win NH, MN, VA, CO, NM. I am similarly sure Trump wins IA, AK, MT, MO, and SC. Therefore, I don't include these states below.

I place each state in a tier -- 1st tier election, 2nd tier election, 3rd tier election, and tie-breaker.

If Biden wins both 1st tier elections (PA and FL), he wins the election. Even if he doesn't win both of them, winning one of them means he likely wins enough 2nd tier states to get to 270, since these states are more conservative than many of the 2nd tier states. This is why they're 1st tier. 

2nd tier elections are the elections I'll be looking at if Biden does not win both FL and PA. Biden can still technically win even if he loses both FL and PA, but it is unlikely he wins NC and/or WI if he can't win FL or PA. I don't think he can win AZ if he can't win PA and possibly if he can't win FL. Basically, these states are the ones I look at if Biden can't win both tier 1 states. 

3rd tier elections are those that I'll be looking at if Biden has 270 from the first two tiers and I want to see if a landslide is about to occur. I see no probable situation in which Biden doesn't win in tier 1 or tier 2 but somehow wins because of tier 3. 

The tie-breaking tier is in the event Biden wins PA, MI, and NV, but can't win WI, FL, NC, and AZ. Without these two tie-breakers, the election is 268-268. Biden would have to win both NE-2 and ME-2 to avoid a tie. However, I doubt NE-2 goes Biden if AZ and WI don't. I don't think ME-2 goes for Biden without WI. This is a longshot to happen and a longshot for Biden to win if it does happen. The House will pick Trump in this scenario based of how the vote is done. 

Anyway, here's the checklist. These key counties are basically the counties that I think will show if the Biden coalition is doing better than Clinton coalition. I expect Biden to perform somewhere between Clinton and Obama. But we will see:

Key Counties 2020 2016 2012 2008 2004 2000 Population Center
  image.png.a8fe338c811cb7fb7f831d254cc75c63.png image.png.cc57f95313848b30730048cb1a00de29.png image.png.44ab8e9bb99cefe7cb8b98c32c0f73c9.png image.png.c79bc24f1c3b70333ed6ce66441da7e5.png image.png.02bcd19d037578500d3f87ed7199dc57.png image.png.d3395b65b08be5840b2f6697a308df33.png  
Berks County, PA   -10 -1 9 -7 -9 Reading, PA
Erie County, PA   -2 16 20 8 9 Erie, PA
Lackawanna County, PA   3 27 26 14 24 Scranton, PA
Luzerne County, PA   -19 5 8 3 8 Wilkes-Barre, PA
Pennsylvania Total   -1 5 10 3 5 1st Tier Election
Pinellas County, FL   -2 6 8 0 -4 St. Petersburg, FL
Brevard County, FL   -20 -12 -11 -16 -8 Palm Bay, FL
Polk County, FL   -14 -7 -7 -18 -9 Bartow, FL
Volusia County, FL   -13 -1 5 2 8 Daytona Beach, FL
Florida Total   -1 1 3 -5 0 1st Tier Election
Robeson County, NC   -4 17 13 6 21 Lumberton, NC
Cumberland Co., NC   16 19 18 -4 1 Fayetteville, NC
Gaston Co, NC   -32 -25 -25 -36 -34 Charlotte suburb
Orange Co., NC   50 42 45 35 27 Chapel Hill, NC
North Carolina Total   -4 -2 1 -12 -13 2nd Tier Election
Wayne County, MI   38 47 49 39 40 Detroit, MI
Macomb County, MI   -12 4 8 -1 2 Detroit suburbs
Genesee County, MI   9 29 32 21 28 Flint, MI
Saginaw County, MI   -1 11 17 7 10 Saginaw, MI
Michigan Total   -1 9 16 3 5 2nd Tier Election
Douglas County, WI   7 31 33 32 31 Superior, WI
Sauk County, WI   0 19 23 5 6 Sauk City, WI
Monitowoc County, WI   -21 -3 8 -5 -4 Monitowoc, WI
Rock, WI   11 23 29 17 18 Janesville, WI
Wisconsin Total   -1 7 14 1 0 2nd Tier Election
Clark County, NV   9 14 19 5 6 Las Vegas, NV
Washoe County, NV   1 4 12 -4 -9 Reno, NV
Douglas County, NV   -32 -26 -16 -29 -29 Minden, NV
Carson City, NV   -14 -9 1 -16 -19 Carson City, NV
Nevada Total   2 6 12 -2 -4 2nd Tier Election
Maricopa County, AZ   -3 -11 -10 -15 -10 Phoenix, AZ
Pima County, AZ   14 7 6 6 8 Tucson, AZ
Pinal County, AZ   -19 -17 -14 -15 1 Florence, AZ
Coconino, AZ   20 15 17 13 7 Flagstaff, AZ
Arizona Total   -3 -9 -8 -11 -6 2nd Tier Election
Gwinnet County, GA   6 -9 -11 -32 -32 Atlanta suburbs
Fulton County, GA   42 30 35 19 18 Atlanta, GA
Cobb County, GA   2 -12 -9 -25 -33 Marietta, GA
Henry County, GA   4 -3 -7 -34 -35 Atlanta suburbs
Georgia Total   -5 -8 -5 -17 -12 3rd Tier Election
Harris County, TX   12 0 2 -10 -11 Houston, TX
Dallas County, TX   26 15 15 1 -8 Dallas, TX
Travis County, TX   39 24 30 14 -5 Austin, TX
Fort Bend Co., TX   6 -7 -2 -15 -21 Houston suburbs
Texas Total   -9 -16 -11 -23 -21 3rd Tier Election
Loraine County, OH   0 15 18 13 10 Cleveland suburbs
Cuyhoga County, OH   35 40 39 34 30 Cleveland, OH
Lake County, OH   -15 -1 1 -3 -5 Cleveland suburbs
Stark County, OH   -17 1 6 2 -2 Canton, OH
Ohio Total   -8 3 4 -2 -4 3rd Tier Election
Douglas Co., NE (2nd)   -15 -3 5 -18 -15 Omaha
Sarpy Co., NE (2nd)   -32 -23 -16 -39 -33 Omaha suburbs
Nebraska 2nd District   -18 -7 1 -22 -18 Tie-Breaker Election
Penobscot Co., ME (2nd)   11 3 5 0 -4 Bangor, ME
Kennebec, ME (1st/2nd)   4 13 14 8 12 Augusta, ME
Androscoggin Co (2nd)   10 13 16 10 12 Lewiston, ME
Maine Total   3 15 18 9 5 Tie-Breaker Election
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3 minutes ago, Actinguy said:

I’m surprised to see that level of confidence in Iowa.  Last I looked at state polls there, it was 50/50.

If I add it, it will be tier 3, which means its mainly just to look at after Biden's won to see the extent of his victory for a possible landslide. 


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55 minutes ago, admin_270 said:

How are you going to know this on Election Day?

Well, it's possible I won't. However, generally you get a % of county votes that have been calculated. If Biden is at a +18 margin in a county that went +3 for Trump in 2016 and something like 79% of the county votes are in, then I'd say it looks like Biden will probably outperform Clinton here. Basically, Biden just has to outperform Clinton in PA, WI, MI, and FL in these counties to likely win these states, although it's possible that 1) Biden underperforms in the population centers (mostly not on my checklist) or performs worse in very strong Trump areas (mostly not on my checklist).

If I were to guess, I think I could, using my list, make a projection on the winner of the election before CNN does, unless the votes are impossibly close. This might be me being over confident, but I think these counties will be very telling and I think by 5am on election day, i'll have enough data to make a decision, barring that whatever votes that haven't been counted are overwhelmingly votes for one candidate over the other. 

If PA and FL votes are mostly in on election day, I think that will help with knowing who won. I mean Biden wins if he gets both of those, even if he loses all the other states on my checklist.

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23 minutes ago, admin_270 said:

Yes, but how do you know what mail-in ballots look like and when they'll be counted by?

I don't. But you get a county %. They're part of that %. Supposedly the mail-in ballots, according to polls, are favoring Biden. If I'm told that those are what's holding it up, I'm probably going to be more optimistic about Biden winning. https://www.foxnews.com/politics/democratic-ballots-double-republican-early-voting

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3 minutes ago, vcczar said:

I don't. But you get a county %. They're part of that %. Supposedly the mail-in ballots, according to polls, are favoring Biden. If I'm told that those are what's holding it up, I'm probably going to be more optimistic about Biden winning. https://www.foxnews.com/politics/democratic-ballots-double-republican-early-voting

Yes, they might favour Biden. If day-of results favour Biden, I think you're right, but if they don't it might take some time to figure out who's the winner.

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3 minutes ago, admin_270 said:

I’m not discounting that the all the votes won’t come in. I’m making my bet that enough will come in to make a likely projection, considering how narrow margins were in decisive states in 2016. If Biden is 10% ahead of Clinton in my key counties with 60% of the ballots in, it might be enough to say Biden will likely win, since he might only need a 2 or 3% lead over Clinton in those counties. Obviously, if ballots just aren’t coming in im not going to make a projection. However, I plan to be more trigger happy than the news outlets, and I’ll likely be confident in how I call it, whether it’s for Biden or for Trump. To me, these counties are the ones that matter. I might only need one Or two of these counties per state really to decisively move to Biden to suggest a larger movement. So if those county votes come in large #s I might be able to project with them alone. 

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5 minutes ago, admin_270 said:

My sense is to go on a vacation on Nov. 2nd for 2 weeks. 😉

That is possible. I just expect Biden to mostly hold his currently lead and for the polls to be more accurate this time than last time. They only need to be slightly more accurate. I think we will have enough evidence on election night to determine if things are going better for Biden than they were for Clinton. 

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4 minutes ago, PoliticalPundit said:

if Biden is ahead on election night it'll be called November 3rd

if Trump is ahead this is going to take MONTHS imo.

However Biden seems a decent human being so he might pull a Gore if we get that far into the weeds. 


Invert it.  If Trump wins, Biden will concede.  If Biden wins, Trump won’t leave until he’s carried out in a box.

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2 minutes ago, Actinguy said:

Invert it.  If Trump wins, Biden will concede.  If Biden wins, Trump won’t leave until he’s carried out in a box.

Well that's obvious lol. trump isnt leaving unless he loses like Texas on November 3rd.


I think biden the politician/human would concede pretty quickly but his team around him (obama/clinton folks) are going to force him to stick around as long as possible. sorta like what they're doing now forcing him inside constantly. 

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