Specialists Forecast Biden Winning in the Arizona, Florida, and Illinois
On Tuesday, despite the global pandemic turning the entire social and political course of life, local residents of Arizona, Florida, and Illinois came to the electoral districts to vote. Three more states — Louisiana, Georgia, and Kentucky — have decided to postpone the elections. The same decision was made concerning the first democratic elections in Puerto-Rico.
The Ohio state having 136 votes in the first election tour, couldn’t get all the ballot papers required to make the procedure. On Monday evening, the governor declared publicly that the health department executive and he have decided on closing the electoral districts despite the couple hours prior to that court’s statement of the abolition of the suggestion to postpone the voting.
Democratic primary chronology
The first election tour in the USA has been severely derailed by the coronavirus pandemic, but the elections still go on.
12:31. The government receives the suggestion to postpone the elections
The suggestion to postpone the elections appeared due to the global crisis caused by the pandemic. The democratic party has collected 3 out of 5 votes. The senator Vermont Berny Sanders has virtually no chances of winning his opponent vice-president Joe Biden.
12:05. People trust Joe Biden more and more
The vice-president Joe Biden has easily got ahead of the senator Bernt Sanders in Vermont. The only reasonable course of events in the current crisis conditions was decided to be the exit-polls in Arizona, Florida, and Illinois by conducting elections by phone pollings. Coronavirus epidemic continues to corrupt the established way of life, healthcare becomes a matter of the highest level of concern.
Due to the nature of the pandemic, exit-polls weren’t conducted out on the streets, but the electorate gave their votes by the phone in Arizona and Florida on March 9th to 15th and in Illinois on March 13th to 16th. The majority of the electorate from Arizona voted in advance, while most of the participants from Florida and Illinois are intending to visit the election districts on Tuesday and vote personally. That is why the interpretation of the results in the last two states has to be taken with caution.
The majority of respondents gave their votes for Biden rather than Sanders. They believe that this candidate will be more capable to cope with the current crisis. Here are the results of phone pollings across the states:
- 73–20% in Florida.
- 63–32% in Illinois.
- 63–31% in Arizona.
The election process was canceled in Ohio after all the initial preparation events got closed.
47% of people who voted for Biden in Arizona and 43% in Florida say that the possibility of a solution to the current healthcare problems is the determining factor for their decision. In the state of Illinois, the numbers are even higher. This is the conclusion of the ABC News Gary Langer’s report concerning the elections.
23:06. ABC forecasts the victory of Joe Biden in Arizona.
63% of respondents believe that Biden is more suited for coping with the oncoming crisis, that is why they are willing to support him with their votes. The participants of the survey also believe that Biden can outrun Trump in the elections. 65% of the respondents stated that they are willing to support the candidate who can win Trump rather than the one who agrees with his politics concerning the general issues.
51% of the surveyed believe that Biden is more of a right-wing politician. And with that, 41% believe that Sanders is the one of “right” ideology. While 47% of people, on the contrary, blame Sanders for being too liberal.
In the Maricopa County in Arizona, which includes the Phoenix, Biden is in the lead against Sanders (41% against 29%). This is the district of the largest Latinoamerican ethnic group.
Sanders is leading in the Coconino county with 48% against 35% for Biden. There are many Navajo, Hualapai and Hopi Navajo Indians living here. About 30% of the county population represents indigenous groups, with the most populated cities being Flagstaff and Sedona.
22:42. Biden gathers more than a half of votes required to win the first election tour
According to the expert estimations, Biden has at least 1004 delegate votes as opposed to 730 votes of Sanders at the moment. What this means is that the previous vice-president has crossed the intermediate point in 1991 votes and has high chances of becoming the Democratic candidate number one.
In all the three states that will have elections on Thursday, it seems completely different from the situation from four years before. The majority of people now support Biden.
Sanders is not going to win in any of the counties, despite his high ratings in the year 2016 when he managed to win in 9 counties even with the high Hilary Clinton credibility at the time. He is currently in the lead in only one electoral district of the Illinois state — Champaign with 49% against 44%. The information has been received from 79% of the election districts.
We remind you that Clinton has won Sanders before by winning in 23 counties situated all across the state borders. Even so, Sanders was leading in all the central rural districts.
In the year 2020 in Florida, the electoral attendance rate is significantly higher than the rate of the last elections. This has mostly to do with the increased number of electorate giving their votes in advance: at least 1 100 000 democrats were able to participate in the voting. At the moment, it is estimated that as much as 93% of the electorate will take part in current voting. During the course of initial elections, the Democratic party has given 1 714 409 ballot papers as opposed to the 1 709 183 papers in the year 2016. But it is still less than the number of ballot papers in the year 2018 — as much as 1 749 920 papers were given.
22:28. Election commission representatives from Arizona mistakenly reveal private information to the public
The election commission officials disclosed the personal information of 80 voters by mistake. The information appeared in the report, which was prepared for the state political parties. The state secretary of state, Katie Hobbs, told us about it.
It turned out that these were voters whose personal data had been protected because they belonged to certain professions or had been victims of certain crimes. Their personal information was mistakenly included in a preliminary ballot paper that was prepared for political parties and the Arizona voter database.
21:48. Biden addresses the Sanders supporters during his speech
In his speech that followed the announcement of preliminary results in Florida and Illinois, former vice-president Biden appealed to voters who support his rival, Bernie Sanders. The press noted that the video message was very similar to the presidential one.
In his speech, Biden emphasized once again that in these difficult times of pandemic, the nation must be united more than ever. “At times like these, we understand that we need to put politics aside and work together as Americans. Coronavirus does not care if you are a Democrat or a Republican … we are all together,” he said.
21:29. Biden is victorious on the initial elections in Illinois
ABC News conducted a study on the results of the poll and came to the conclusion that Biden is indeed going to win the initial elections in the state of Illinois.
According to the initial results, respondents choose Biden because they believe he can cope with the crisis better than his opponent. This is the opinion of 64% of respondents. 87% also said they were incredibly concerned about the coronavirus outbreak. It is among these people that Biden has the most support. Among those less concerned, less willing to cast their votes for him.
21:02. Biden’s ratings make Chicago stronger
10% of polling districts report that the former vice president is in the lead. Biden is leading in the DeKalb and Lake circles in Chicago suburbs with 53% (data provided by 35% of polling centers) and 64% (provided by the other 10% of the centers). In a different suburb of Chicago, McHenry County, Sanders gains 58% of the votes (data provided by 92 percent of polling centers).
In the year 2016, Sanders also received the highest support in this county, outrunning Hillary Clinton with the result of 61%. In Chicago, based on the information from 13% of the polling centers, the ratio is almost equal: Biden scored 48% and got Sanders 47%.
21:17. How will the pandemic affect political agreements?
Benny Thompson, Chairman of the National Security Council of the House of Representatives, sent a letter to the head of the Secret Service asking what would happen if the COVID-19 pandemic made political agreements impossible to implement. He requested a contingency plan and clarification on candidates’ security in case something goes wrong.
“Even though everyday life is complete upside down at the moment, Americans deserve to know how the U.S. intends to protect its politicians on the campaign trail, namely the former vice-president Joseph R. Biden Jr. and President Donald J. Trump, and to ensure that all agreements can be implemented as fully as possible in the face of the pandemic,” Thompson writes.
20:45. Internet voting faces some latency problems
Given that it is rather dangerous to go for a vote personally in the current situation, Ohio decided to postpone the election date.
Another decision was to increase online voting and to allow all voters to set up this option. Implementing such a project would be quite difficult, but not impossible.
Many were skeptical about holding a mass vote online or postponing the election date.
The Republican Party stated that traditionally the number of voters increases during online voting and this should be treated with utmost cautiousness. In addition, they doubt that the Conservatives will approve such a vote. After all, a system will be created and there will be a precedent, and it is unlikely that anyone will want to continue such a practice after the crisis is gone.
At the same time, representatives of center-left wing Democrats believe that the extension of the main election season is a waste of time. Also, now that their most preferred candidate Biden is ahead, many believe that this could be beneficial to Trump. Therefore, the Democratic Party has not considered extending the main election season seriously.
20:24. Sanders doesn’t get the general support of the whole Illinois state but wins in several counties.
In 2016, Saunders has actually won several counties in Illinois with a small margin, despite the fact that he hasn’t got the support of the whole state. The candidate won the most votes in Maclean and Champagne counties and among local university students.
“We already know that Saunders is doing better with younger voters, so I’ll be interested to see if they’re going to be his best constituencies this time,” wrote Kaylie Rogers, a reporter covering politics and technology for FiveThirtyEight.
20:15. Specialists forecast Trump’s victory on the initial elections in Illinois
According to ABC News, Trump is estimated to gain the maximum number of votes in Illinois and become a potential candidate.
McDaniel’s chairman said the turnout in the first round of the state election was record-breaking, which motivates the team brilliantly. According to Ronna McDaniel, Trump’s team is enthusiastic because of its longtime supporters and the huge number of new voters. He believes Trump is a great success and the party members are very happy that Donald Trump is the one coming from the Republicans.
20:00. Florida election projection – Biden is leading the first tour
The four central election districts of Florida where Trump and Obama previously won, now report that Biden is in the lead. In Jefferson County, he gains 74% (according to 50% of polling centers), in Monroe – 61% (according to 97% of polling centers), in Pinellas – 55% (according to 85% of polling centers), in St. Lucy – 67% (according to 86% of polling centers).
According to the data from 82% of polling centers in Florida, Biden scores 61%, Sanders 23%, Gabbard 1%.
Because of the coronavirus pandemic, early voting may have been real salvation to the election, but it has a number of political consequences. In particular, prolonged voting could increase the rating of other candidates, such as former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg, former Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg, and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren.
According to preliminary polls, 71% of Florida respondents would vote for Biden because they believe he can defeat the crisis.
Respondents also believe that Biden has a much better chance of defeating Trump than Sanders. 66% of respondents say they would prefer a candidate who can defeat the current president of the U.S. After all, many acknowledge that it is not difficult to predict whether Donald Trump will win Florida among the Republicans or not, so he is going to participate in the final race.
Biden is also more trusted in issues concerning social security (59% of respondents) and weapons policy (63%). 82% of the surveyed said they were generally positive about Biden. Sanders, however, gained only 68% of respondents’ votes. Biden’s ideological views were supported by 65% of the respondents, while only 36% supported Sanders. 47% of respondents think that Saunders is just way too liberal.
20:00. ABC News predicts Trump’s victory in the initial elections among the Republicans in Arizona.
This information was made public based on an analysis of the preliminary vote. Professionals still find it difficult to give specific figures and are waiting for the results of the polls.
19:45. The electoral attendance rates in Arizona are not high but rather stable
According to Garrett Archer, an electoral analyst at ABC15, voter participation in Arizona is low but stable. He believes the Coronavirus pandemic to be the main reason why many voters are staying home, as well as the less competitive nature of the initial election tour, with only two Democrats representatives left in the race.
The polling center workers constantly disinfect the equipment and suggest voting remotely. There was a case when people crowded near a broken machine and one of the voters tried to eliminate the situation. Archer mentions that the majority of votes are received by mail.
The secretary of state said there are approximately 944 000 democrat voters in the state of Arizona, all of whom received their ballots by mail. 85-90% of voters have already voted, so people don’t have to wait their turn. The polling centers usually close in a matter of two hours.
19:45. Florida is estimated to have 38% of the electorate present for voting, Biden is currently in the lead
Most Florida counties have already closed the vote, only in Panhandle will it be closed around 8 pm. 38% of voters are expected to cast their ballots in time. Joe Biden leads by a margin of almost 40 points (58% vs 21%).
In some of the larger districts, such as Hillsborough, which covers Tampa and Broward, a stronghold of Democrats in South Florida, Biden leads with a solid 52.3% (data from 74 percent of polling centers).
Once all the votes have been counted, Biden is expected to gain 58%, Sanders — 21%.
19:31. Sanders gives a speech concerning Coronavirus
Berny Sanders shares his stand on the Coronavirus pandemic and talks about his electoral campaign.
On Tuesday night, he broadcasted live that today’s speech will be dedicated to the Coronavirus and spoke for 20 minutes about the pandemic, without touching on campaign issues or the first round of elections once.
Sanders also promised to review the proposals convening the pandemic and bring them to the Senate. In particular, this would involve compensation of $2,000 per month per family to cover basic expenses during the crisis caused by the pandemic.
He also plans to raise questions about the Medicare program for those who do not have health insurance or who cannot afford to pay for medical services during the crisis, about the involvement of armed forces for the construction of mobile hospitals, and the creation of emergency shelters in free hotel rooms. The basic idea of the speech was that only by uniting the Americans could cope with the crisis.
“We are dealing with a growing economic crisis that will affect tens of millions of workers in this country. We are also dealing with a political crisis. And I think the main thing to do at the moment is to be together,” he said.
19:02. Biden speaks out about the elections
It was first announced that former President Joe Biden would speak around 9 pm. The speech was supposed to focus on the election campaign and the coronavirus. The speech was to be broadcasted live from Wilmington, Delaware. The report said that Biden would encourage Americans to come together to solve the global problem. This is the only way they can recover from the crisis stronger than they were before it.
18:28. New information from Illinois
According to Sean Tanner, the polling center situated in the John T. McCutcheon Elementary School had no polling station set up this morning. However, he’ll be sure to report right away when the polling station is up and ready. He also visited several other polling centers and checked for any problems on the grounds. All problematic polling centers will be added to a special list for further investigation.
In Chicago, where voters are unable to vote at their polling centers because they were closed due to the Coronavirus pandemic, the electorate will get to vote at one polling place in the district where they live. At the same time, a new problem arose — people are starting to complain about long lines.
In particular, there have been many complaints in the 46th District, which is in Truman College. Tenner went there to deliver some more hand sanitizer.
18:20. Sanders encourages people to fight Coronavirus
Representatives of Bernie Sanders’ headquarters announced that the senator is evaluating different ways to respond to the Coronavirus problem. The broadcast will take place at 7:15 pm live from Washington.
It was not specified whether or not they are going to talk about the first round of elections and any decisions regarding the continuation of the election campaign. Sanders’ remarks are planned to be distributed through official websites and social networks.
17:26 According to the results of phone pollings, Biden will address the crisis more effectively than Sanders
According to preliminary results of the phone polls conducted by the national exit poll in Arizona, Florida, and Illinois, former vice-president Joe Biden is ahead of Bernie Sanders in the level of confidence of Democratic voters. With the pandemic becoming a major public health problem, it is Biden who voters believe will be in a better position to address it.
Because of the pandemic, no polls were conducted in these states over the weekend. Instead, phone polls were conducted in Arizona and Florida from 9th to 15th March and from 13th to 16th March in Illinois. The interviews covered both those who intended to vote in person (the majority of the electorate) and those who planned to exercise their will remotely.
Divergence from the standard survey format requires additional caution in interpreting the results. The Ohio phone survey was canceled due to the suspension of the first round of the election.
The number of people who make their choices based on the candidate’s perceived ability to qualitatively reorganize the healthcare system was 47% in Arizona and 43% in Florida. In Illinois, the figure is even higher.
Results in Florida and Illinois may be slightly different from the actual opinion of voters, because of numerous voters who planned to vote in person but stayed home due to the danger of getting infected with coronavirus (41% in Illinois and 30% in Florida). In Arizona, phone polls and remote polls have been programmed beforehand a long time ago.
17:12. DNC encourages people to vote in advance and sent their ballots by mail
The Chairman of the National Committee of the Democratic Party, Tom Perez, stated that those who had not yet voted should seek early voting and mailing of ballots rather than postponing the elections. The DNC has a number of complex rules on exactly how the first round of elections should be conducted. The rules assume that those county districts that postpone the election may lose their votes.
The organization also said that the situation in Ohio had caused chaos and confusion, and the leadership of the Ohio Democratic Party had to work hard to protect the rights of its voters. The DNC said that citizens deserve certainty and security, so voting should be as accessible as possible.
Thus, states that have not yet held the first round of elections should organize the possibility for voters to exercise their right to vote instead of postponing the first round of elections. All the more so because the pandemic situation is unpredictable.
Earlier on Tuesday, Ohio Governor Mike Devine decided to close polling centers due to the Coronavirus pandemic. He also filed a petition with the court to postpone the election to June, but it was denied. The state governor also stated that there was no court order for the postponement, so there was nothing to dispute. But the State Supreme Court said there was still a chance that the election would be stopped.
“It’s about protecting the lives of Ohio citizens. As a governor, I have an obligation to do everything in my power to protect the people,” says Devine.
14:40. Republican congressman declares his vote for Biden
Republican Joe Walsh, Trump’s former rival in the previous presidential election on Tuesday wrote on Twitter that he voted for Democratic candidate Joe Biden. The same day, Walsh’s homeland, Illinois, was voted on.
In his post, Walsh wrote that Trump is a terrible man and must be defeated at all costs.
14:16. Andrew Yang’s team is willing to help the White House fight the Coronavirus pandemic.
Andrew Yang claimed he is currently in contact with the White House and is considering helping Americans who have suffered from the Coronavirus outbreak. In an interview with CNN, Andrew Yang said his team will do everything they can to help. He encouraged everyone to come together to keep the country strong in times of crisis.
Yang proposes to organize a subscription program under which every American citizen will receive $1,000 regardless of their income. He also talks about the necessity of allocating 500 dollars for each child. The White House is now considering a means to help people in the pandemic.
12:29. Biden’s headquarters send funds-collecting letters
Former vice-president Joe Biden’s campaign sent out new fundraising emails on Tuesday. Staff said that during the Coronavirus pandemic, all the initiated Internet operations will be maintained as most Americans do not leave their homes now.
The letter says the staff is doing what they did before. They are working with officials, organizing events, communicating with voters and putting forward political plans. Only now, all of that is conducted online.
At the same time, the representatives of the headquarters also admit that many things still have to be worked out on the run and the presidential primaries live do not yet work perfectly.
For example, the virtual voting platform in Illinois faces serious technical challenges. The video element was missing while trying to communicate with Biden headquarters.
The email said that employees continue to build an online platform and learn together. That’s why the fundraising campaign remains crucial.
9:58. Sanders’ campaign has altered the traditional audience coverage score
While Arizona, Florida, and Illinois were deciding on the ballots, Sanders’ campaign headquarters announced that the traditional campaigning would not take place in the current pandemic conditions.
The campaign has now moved from rallies and agitation to online and phone polling. For the time being, volunteers are making contact with voters by telephone. Also on Tuesday, it was announced that it is a personal choice of each citizen whether to visit the polling center or not.
Communications Director Mike Caskey said that any decision by voters in matters relating to their lives and health should be respected. Also at Sanders’ headquarters, they have developed guidance on how to make yourself as safe as possible in times of crisis.
9:44. The final forecast of the election results in Arizona, Florida, and Illinois just came out
FiveThirtyEight forecasts that Joe Biden will have won primaries among Democrats by the end of the season with a 99% chance.
Also, according to FiveThirtyEight, Biden can get anywhere from 59% to 67% of the votes, so Sanders really has no chance. The rest of the FiveThirtyEight forecasts have been suspended to give a more accurate picture of the prospects each of the three states has after the vote on Tuesday. They also don’t plan to conduct new polls or give any other comments on this until the official results are out.
How Coronavirus Affected Presidential Election in 2020
Journalists note that the situation with this year’s presidential elections was extremely interesting to follow. Both the former vice-president Joe Biden and Senator Bernie Sanders had previously run for the office but had never risen so high.
According to ABC News, Biden is the leader of the first round of the Democrats and is expected to gain 841 votes (against 690 expected votes for Sanders). But with the Coronavirus’ rapidly developing pandemic, the election race may not be as exciting as experts originally predicted.
At least 105 confirmed cases were reported in Illinois. Another 18 people got sick in Arizona. But the organizations that oversee the first round of elections have advocated the need to continue the electoral process. Even the state of Ohio didn’t affect their decision.
For those ordering ballots in the usual way, every state has taken steps to ensure that the CDC recommendations are followed and to allow voters to do their civic duty even in the midst of a crisis.
In Palm Beach County in particular, where almost 25% of the population is over 65, up to 50 people are allowed to vote at the same time on the grounds. Voters are also encouraged to bring their own pens and use disinfectant both before and after voting.
Illinois Governor J. B. Pritzker, in conjunction with the State Department of Health, has issued a directive recommending adequate sanitation at polling facilities. All surfaces, in particular voting equipment panels, must be disinfected at all times, and voters must be offered disinfectant before and after they cast their ballots.
Clerk Don Gray of Sangamon County, Illinois, posted a video in his Twitter account saying the voting booths will be placed 6 feet apart in accordance with the recommended distance.
In all three states, voters had the opportunity to vote in advance or remotely. There’s a chance that this will reduce queues at the polling stations.
The Secretary of State reported that 944 000 active Democrat voters in Arizona received ballots by mail. In Florida, approximately 1 million ballots were used in early and mailed elections, which accounts for 60% of all voters.
In Illinois, the number of participants in early voting broke all records: approximately 504 000 voters have already exercised their will, yet another 111 000 ballots have been mailed. The representative of the State Democratic Party believes that this will prevent crowds at polling stations and at the same time provide the maximum number of electorate participants the opportunity to vote.
Among voters who are at risk, in particular, retirees, judging by the results of the polls, the majority supports Biden. Although some young voters often cast their ballots for Sanders. It should be noted that the situation in 2016 shares a lot of similarities to the current state of affairs.
Local officials are now having to adapt to the unprecedented circumstances surrounding the Coronavirus pandemic. It is also not yet known how the pandemic will ultimately affect the voter attendance rate and how many of them may fall ill later.
Before the pandemic began, Democrats had fairly stable ratings in most states. It is not certain at the moment how the situation will change in the near future.