By the time today is over, we’ll start to find out just how right or wrong the 2020 polls were. Joe Biden enters election day with a national lead of eight to ten points (depending on how you calculate the averages), a lead in most swing states, a significant lead in a few swing states, and even a small lead in some red states.
Even if the polling is off in 2020 by the same amount that it was off by in 2016, it’ll still give Joe Biden an electoral college victory. We all have to go out and vote today, but if we finish this right, Biden should win. The polls can be wrong, but they’re never this wrong. Here’s the crazy part though.
The national polls right now look a lot like they did a month ago, three months ago, six months ago, and even a year ago. The final Biden vs Trump polling averages are about the same as they were back when this election cycle was first starting, and a hypothetical Biden vs Trump matchup was being polled.
All the crazy, shocking, earth shifting things that happened, and none of it moved the needle in either direction. During the course of this election cycle we had an impeachment, a pandemic, civil unrest, an elaborate phony scandal about one candidate’s son, a sitting President catching a plague, nearly a quarter million Americans dead… and none of it seemed to change anyone’s mind. The polls have been about the same the entire time. That would be unusual for any election cycle, let alone the most chaotic election cycle we’ve ever had.
Compare this to four years ago, when the polling averages jumped around constantly at any whiff of news or scandal. Perhaps it’s because last time no one really knew what to make of Donald Trump and they kept changing their minds, but this time everyone knows exactly who and what Trump is. A disturbing minority of Americans have decided they like the hellscape that Trump has created, but fortunately a far larger majority have decided they want Joe Biden to step in and fix the damage that Trump has done.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report