Montana Gov. Steve Bullock said Tuesday that he will seek the Democratic Party nomination in 2020. He joins a historically large field seeking to unseat President Donald Trump. Bullock released a video making his announcement.
Bullock is likely to be one of the final notable entrants in a Democratic field that now numbers 23. That list is below, ordered by the current national polling average. 18 of these candidates have qualified for the first two debates in June and July. The field is capped at 20 (candidates will be split randomly across two nights). If more than 20 become eligible, a tiebreaker process will be used.
Joe Biden is at 46% in a new poll of likely South Carolina Democratic primary voters. This is a large uptick from the 32% that the same pollster gave Biden about a month ago, prior to his formal entry into the race. In a field of over 20 presidential hopefuls, the former Vice President now has almost as much support in The Palmetto State as all the other candidates combined.
Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders was 2nd at 15%, with California Sen. Kamala Harris 3rd at 10%. Both those numbers were little changed from a month ago. Biden's large gain appears to have come at the expense of Cory Booker, Beto O'Rourke and Stacey Abrams, who each lost 5% or more of their support.
For those interested, we have a new page that displays who is polling in the top 3 for those places where polling is available. It includes a link to the polling detail for each state. Keep in mind that polling is pretty limited at this point; several of these states only have one survey thus far.
The new 2020 Democratic Nomination Polls page provides a snapshot of the top 3 candidates in each state where polling is available. Select the state name for the percentages associated with each candidate as well as detail on the poll(s) used to calculate the position.
Wyoming Sen. Mike Enzi announced Saturday that he will not run for reelection in 2020. Enzi, 75, was first elected to the Senate in 1996. He has been returned to the Senate for three additional terms, getting over 70% of the vote each time.
Possible replacements could include former Gov. Matt Mead or Rep. Liz Cheney. In July 2013, Cheney announced she would challenge Enzi for the Republican nomination. After failing to gain significant party support, she withdrew in early 2014. Enzi would easily defeat four other challengers on the way to winning a fourth and final term in November that year. Cheney went on to win the state's at-large seat in the U.S. House in November, 2016.
Enzi becomes the fourth Senator to announce a 2020 retirement. His Republican colleagues Lamar Alexander (TN) and Pat Roberts (KS), as well as Democrat Tom Udall (NM) will be leaving. All these seats are seen as safe for the incumbent party.
A Federal court has ruled Ohio's congressional districts to be an unconstitutional gerrymander, ordering new districts to be drawn up for the 2020 elections. State lawmakers have until June 14 to come up with a new map, although they will appeal the decision.
The situation is similar to that in neighboring Pennsylvania, which had to redraw congressional districts for the 2018 midterm elections. In Ohio, the GOP holds a 12-4 advantage. Only two of those districts were decided by less than a 10% margin in 2018; all 15 incumbents that ran won reelection.
Regardless of how this all plays out, there will be new districts drawn for the 2022 election, as redistricting will take place after the 2020 election. There will also be a new way of drawing them, as Ohio voters approved a ballot proposition last year that should reduce the ability of a majority legislature to create a gerrymandered map.
Michael Bennet of Colorado has become the 7th Senator to join the 2020 presidential race. He made the announcement Thursday during an appearance on CBS "This Morning".
His campaign put out a video called "7,591 words". This is the number of words in the U.S. Constitution, including the 27 amendments:
Bennet has long been expected to jump in the race. However, his timetable was changed after a diagnosis of prostate cancer earlier this year. Following surgery, he has received a clean bill of health.
In a field of over 20 candidates, Bennet joins his Senate colleagues Cory Booker (NJ), Kirsten Gillibrand (NY), Kamala Harris (CA), Amy Klobuchar (MN), Bernie Sanders (VT) and Elizabeth Warren (MA). His fellow Coloradan, former Gov. John Hickenlooper is also in the running for the Democratic nomination.
Tuesday's Republican primary in the vacant North Carolina 3rd district will head to a July 9 runoff, as no candidate in the large field reached 30%. Moving on are the top-two vote getters, State Rep. Greg Murphy and pediatrician Joan Perry. On the Democratic side, former Greenville Mayor Allen Thomas won with 50% of the vote; he will meet the eventual GOP nominee in the September 10th special election.
This seat has been vacant since the February death of long-time Rep. Walter Jones. This is a conservative district; the eventual GOP nominee will be favored to hold the seat for the party. In 2016, Donald Trump won by 24% over Hillary Clinton. In 2018, Jones ran unopposed for his 12th term, one of the only Republicans to not have a challenger that year.
Two other House vacancies will be filled in the months ahead. Staying in North Carolina, the state's 9th district will hold a primary on May 14. This seat has been open since the new Congress was seated in January, as the November election results were thrown out due to election fraud. The Democratic nominee from November, Dan McCready is running unopposed. The GOP field is much larger, and a runoff here may be needed. The special election will be September 10, unless a runoff is required (30% needed to avoid), in which case it will be November 5. The now-discarded race from November had McCready and Republican Mark Harris separated by fewer than 1,000 votes; the special election is also expected to be highly competitive.
On May 21, a special election will be held in Pennsylvania's 12th congressional district. This is to fill the seat vacated by GOP Rep. Tom Marino, who resigned in January. No primaries were held; nominees were chosen by each party. State Rep. Fred Keller (R) will meet Democrat Marc Friedenberg, a college professor. Friedenberg was the Democratic nominee in 2018; he lost 66% to 34% to Marino. This seat is likely to remain with the Republicans.
Former vice president Joe Biden's entry to the race has given him a notable - if perhaps temporary - boost in the polls, according to two national surveys of registered voters out this week. Already the frontrunner, Biden has opened up a double digit lead on Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders.
In a Morning Consult weekly survey released late Monday, Biden had a 36-22 lead over Sanders. Last week, Biden's lead was 6 points, 30-24. A portion of this survey predated Biden's official entry to the race. A CNN/SSRS poll out Tuesday, taken after Biden joined the field, gave Biden a 24 point lead, 39-15 over the Vermont Senator. In late March, Biden's lead was 8 points, 28-20*.
Overall, Biden's lead in the 270toWin average is now 10.4%. He and Sanders remain the only candidates in double-digits. The next tier, with over 5% support, includes South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg, Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris and former U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke.
The table below includes the polling average and debate qualification status for each declared candidate. The party will hold its first two debates in late June and July. Qualification is based on their standing in the polls and/or a minimum number of donors. Given the size of the field, these initial debates will each take place over two nights, with the candidates split randomly.
* The prior CNN/SSRS release document provided results based on all adults, not registered voters. In today's release, a comparison to registered voters from that poll was provided. The differences were not significant; Biden's lead compared to last month among registered voters was 28-19.
(Moderator) MARGARET BRENNAN: Where? Where are you most focused? What battlegrounds?
PARSCALE: Well, there's some key states. Obviously we have to go back and win Michigan (0.2%) again, Pennsylvania (0.7%), Wisconsin (0.8%). We plan on also being in Minnesota (1.5%) very soon. I think New Mexico (8.2%) is in play in 2020. I think New Hampshire (0.4%), I- I think we continue to grow the map. I think Nevada (2.4%), you know even Colorado (4.9%). And so those are- those are states we did not win in- in 2016 that I think are open for 2020.
Trump won Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin in 2016, each by less than 1%. These are states that had not voted Republican in any presidential election in more than a generation. Clinton won by single digits in the five other states Parscale referenced.
In the map below (click/tap for an interactive version), we show the 8 states mentioned as toss-up. The other locations Trump flipped in 2016 are shown in a lighter shade of red. Use it as a starting point to create your own 2020 forecast. Also note the Road to 270 feature below the interactive map, which will update the winning combinations available to each party based on your map.
New Hampshire: Traditionally thought of as a battleground, it has not voted Republican since 2000. However, Trump won three counties here and all ten of the state's counties shifted toward the GOP from 2012 to 2016.
Minnesota: No state has a longer streak of voting Democratic. The only state won by Mondale in 1984, it last voted for a Republican nominee - Richard Nixon - in 1972. Clinton's narrow win was by the smallest margin since that 1984 election. It has generally not been considered a battleground state, although the majority of elections since 1972 have been decided by fewer than 10 points. Trump won all but 9 of the state's 87 counties, although not by enough to overcome Clinton's performance in the more populous parts of the state.
Nevada: 2016 was only the 2nd time since 1908 (1976 being the other) that the state did not vote for the winner of the presidential election, although the 2.4% Clinton margin was very close to her 2.1% popular vote margin nationwide. Clinton won Clark County (Las Vegas area) by about 6%, while Trump won the remainder of the state by over 15%. Rapidly growing and increasingly diverse, Las Vegas is where most of the population is. It is an open question if 2016 was a historical outlier or if these trends have put the state out of reach for the GOP in a close election.
Colorado: Predominantly Republican prior to 2008, Clinton's 5 point margin here in 2016 was within one point of Obama's in 2012. Trump was the first Republican to win the presidency without winning Colorado since Taft in 1908. Some of the same population factors impacting Nevada are at work here as well.
New Mexico: Having voted Democratic in six of the past seven elections, and with the country's largest Hispanic population, this seems like the biggest reach of the states listed. That said, Libertarian Party nominee Gary Johnson, the state's former governor, received over 9% of the vote here, his best showing in any state. That was greater than Clinton's winning margin, so perhaps the thinking is that many of those voters are reachable for the president in 2020.
Parscale did not mention Maine, where Trump's double-digit margin in the 2nd congressional district (earning him an electoral vote) helped him hold Clinton's statewide margin to under 3%. This was the most narrow victory by any Democrat in the seven consecutive presidential elections they have won here.
Finally, while noting the need to win again in states like Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, no mention was made of holding other competitive states Trump won in 2016. For example, Arizona, North Carolina and Georgia were all closer than New Mexico and demographic trends in these states will likely make them 2020 battlegrounds. Looking back, some of the (admittedly after-the-fact) criticism of the Clinton campaign was its focus on growing the map vs. shoring up the states that would have put them over the required 270 electoral votes.
Former Vice President Joe Biden made his long-expected entry into the 2020 presidential race Thursday. Biden announced his campaign via a launch video that sought to draw a sharp contrast with President Trump.
Biden brings to 20 the number of notable Democrats in the 2020 field. Prior to his announcement, he was the easily the most well-known name reported to be considering a run. While a few others have yet to make their plans known, the field is likely nearing completion, with the first debate* scheduled in just two months.
Biden, who represented Delaware in the U.S. Senate from 1973 until he was sworn in as Barack Obama's Vice President in 2009, was quickly endorsed by Senators Chris Coons and Bob Casey. Obama spokeswoman Katie Hill put out a statement on behalf of the former president praising Biden, but offering no endorsement.
With almost universal name recognition, Biden has led most early polling. Now in the race, he will become the focus of attacks from the large field. He has recently had to address several accusations unwanted touching of women. Some may try and link this to his treatment of Anita Hill during the 1991 Supreme Court confirmation hearings of Justice Clarence Thomas. Going back a bit further, his first run at president in 1988 was quickly abandoned after charges of plagiarism. While his long track record exposes him, he can counter with the argument that he would be among the most experienced new presidents in American history.
* According to an analysis by FiveThirtyEight, 15 of the 20 Democrats have thus far qualified for the first two debates, each of which will be spread over two nights to accommodate the large field. Qualification is based on polling support and/or number of donors. The first debate will take place in Miami on June 26 and 27, broadcast by NBC and affiliated networks. The second debate will be on July 30 and 31 in Detroit, televised by CNN. The party will split candidates randomly across the two nights. This is a different approach - although not necessarily better - than that taken by the GOP with its large field in 2016. For the first debates that cycle, the field was split by polling performance, leading some to derisively refer to the second portion as the "kids' table".