As mentioned in my previous (and first) post for this blog, I have categorized the fifty American states (plus the District of Columbia) into one of seven categories based on their historical results in American presidential elections since 1988.
The first category is the “Solid” grouping and these are states that each of the two main American political parties (Republican, Democratic) can feel exteremely confident will remain in their corner.
For the Republicans, there are nineteen (19) states that fall into this group and they carry with them a total of 143 votes in the Electoral College (EC).
Just a reminder, an American presidential candidate needs 270 EC votes to win the election.
Those solid Republican states (along with their EC votes in parenthesis) are: Alabama (9), Alaska (3), Arkansas (6), Idaho (4), Kansas (6), Kentucky (8), Louisiana (8), Mississippi (6), Montana (3), Nevada (5), North Dakota (3), Oklahoma (7), South Carolina (9), South Dakota (3), Tennessee (11), Texas (38), Utah (6), West Virginia (5), and Wyoming (3).
For the Democratic party, the have fourteen (14) states in the “Solid” category. That is five less than the Republicans, but these states hold 179 EC votes, which is 36 more than the Republicans.
The solid Democratic states are California (55), Connecticut (7), Delaware (3), District of Columbia (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (20), Maine (4), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (11), New Jersey (14), New York (29), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3), and Washington (12).
The next category, “Mostly”, is a bit more paltry from a quantitative prespective. These are states which, for the most part, the political parties can rely on to not bolt to the other side. It is conceivable for oen of these states to flip, but it would take significant resources or a truly amazing event (and given what has transpired so far in this election cycle, that is not out of the realm of possibililty).
For the Democratic Party, there are only two (2) states in this group. Those are Michigan (16) and Oregon (7).
For the Republican Party, there are a trio of states in this category. They are Arizona (11), Georgia (16), and Indiana (11).
Combining the tallies of the above two categories, I can see that as a starting point, the Democratic Party can confidently rely on winning fifteen (15) states (plus the District of Columbia) for a total of 202 EC votes. The Republican Party starts off the 2016 general election with twenty-two (22) states in its corner, but with only a total of 181 EC votes.
Therefore, the Democratic Party only needs sixty-eight (68) EC votes to win the White House while the Republican Party needs to pick up eighty-nine (89).
There are still thirteen (13) states – with a combined 155 EC votes – yet to be categorized and they fall into two remaining groups. These are the dozen-plus-one states where the fight for the 2016 American presidential election will be fought (and fought hard).
The first is the “Leaning” label. These are states which have voted for both parties since 1988 but have tended to lean towards one more than another.
For Republicans, there are two (2) states in this category. They are Missouri (10) and North Carolina (15). For Democarts, they have three (3) states in this field and they are Minnesota (10), Pennsylvania (20), and Wisconsin (10). Each party will need to put significant resources into these states to keep them their respective colors on the map.
The final category is “Tossup”. These remaining eight (8) states have shown no discernible pattern in American presidential election since 1988. This octect of American jurisdictions, and the ninety (90) EC votes they hold, will be the front line for the struggle 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
These states are Colorado (9), Florida (29), Iowa (6), Nevada (6), New Hampshire (4), New Mexico (5), Ohio (18), and Virginia (13).
There is my baseline tally – my starting point for how the 2016 American presidential election will be fought, won, and lost.