If Trump wins, here are the states that will deliver him the victory

Madison Hall
Trump in fayetteville
Months before Election Day, President Donald Trump addresses a crowd at the Fayetteville Regional Airport on September 19, 2020 in Fayetteville, North Carolina. Melissa Sue Gerrits/Getty Images
  • Two weeks before the election, President Donald Trump is trailing the Democratic nominee, Joe Biden, by 10 percentage points nationally, according to FiveThirtyEight.

  • After running over 140,600 election simulations for the 2020 presidential race, Decision Desk HQ gave Trump a 14.1% chance of winning.

  • Over 41 million votes have already been cast, and Trump is lagging behind in four of the swing states he needs to win.

  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

With less than two weeks until Election Day, things are not looking good for the Trump campaign.

In FiveThirtyEight's average of national polls, the Democratic nominee, Joe Biden, leads President Donald Trump by 10 percentage points.

But while Trump's chance of being reelected appears to be on the decline, it is still within the realm of possibility for him to make a comeback as he did in 2016, surging past former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

When forecasters predict election outcomes, they typically run a large number of simulations to ascertain how many times a given contender wins. That translates to a probability of victory.

Decision Desk HQ, an election-forecasting company, ran 140,605 election simulations for the 2020 presidential race. Trump won 19,825 model runs, giving him a 14.1% chance of victory on November 3.

Of those 19,825 Trump victory simulations, here's how often each state broke for Trump:

When analysts say Trump has a narrow path to a second term, this tends to be what they're talking about. Understanding which states are critical for Trump is helpful to gauge how he's faring.

Take, for instance, Florida. Trump wins the election in only 5% of scenarios where he loses Florida. That's why on election night, all eyes will be on the Sunshine State, which is expected to reveal results sooner than other states.

Same with North Carolina, another necessary component of 84% of Trump's winning simulations.

There are multiple ways for Trump to keep the White House, but the president is in dire straits. He is behind in the polls in four of the most crucial swing states: North Carolina, Arizona, Pennsylvania, and Florida.

According to Kiel Williams, an author at DDHQ, losses in Florida and Texas threaten Trump's reelection chances.

"Only Texas, another state Trump is struggling to hold, and California, where Trump has no chance of victory, have more electoral votes than Florida," Williams told Insider. "The loss of Florida is devastating to Trump's Electoral College calculus."

The Trump campaign is also having a difficult time maintaining an edge in Ohio, home to the most competitive race in the country. According to FiveThirtyEight, Ohio is a toss-up, with each candidate predicted to receive 49.5% of the popular vote in the Buckeye State. But Ohio appeared in 92% of simulations in which Trump emerged victorious, and a loss there would also be detrimental to the president's chances in other Midwestern swing states.

"If Trump has lost enough support to lose Ohio, he has almost certainly lost Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania as well," Williams said.

The time for Trump to win over undecided voters is dwindling.

As of Wednesday, over 41 million people had already cast their votes through mail-in and early voting in an election expected to receive the most mailed votes in US history. At this point in 2016, two weeks from the election, just 5.9 million mail-in votes had been cast. Voting-rights experts have said that voting by mail is expected to make up 50% to 70% of the total vote in November.

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