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In the final 72-hour stretch before Election Day, both campaigns are laser-focused on states that President Trump won narrowly four years ago that at the time were polling favorably for the Democrats.
The same dynamics are in play this year, with Democratic candidate Joe Biden polling ahead of Trump in Michigan and Pennsylvania, the states where both will dedicate their time Saturday.
Biden is reuniting with President Barack Obama for two drive-in rallies in Michigan, while running mate Sen. Kamala D. Harris (D-Calif.) is being dispatched to another key battleground, Florida.
Trump is crossing Pennsylvania, beginning in a Philadelphia suburb then moving west with three rallies, including one in the Pittsburgh suburbs. First Lady Melania Trump will make a separate appearance in northeast Pennsylvania and another in Wisconsin. Vice President Pence has two events in North Carolina.
On the eve of a presidential election fraught with tension, warning flares are bursting across American skies. From federal and local law enforcement to analysts who track radical groups, concern is high about the possibility that violence could erupt, especially if the vote count drags on for days without a clear winner.
The signals are disturbing: A sharp increase in gun sales. A spike in chatter about civil war in online forums where right-wing extremists gather. An embrace of violent language by Trump and other leaders. And surveys showing an increased willingness by some Americans to see violence as an acceptable tool against political opponents.
Those who take the threat seriously say there is no evidence of any coordinated plan for widespread violence, and that isolated flare-ups are a more likely scenario. Equally important: “The vast majority of Americans across political lines reject violence, no matter what,” said Rachel Brown, executive director of Over Zero, a nonprofit group that focuses on preventing identity-based violence.
Yet Americans are unusually anxious about this election — and about violence in its aftermath. A YouGov poll found 56 percent of voters saying they anticipate “an increase in violence as a result of the election.”
A yawning chasm has emerged between Trump’s support among women and their backing of Biden — but the president, in his public remarks, has seemed intent on exacerbating it.
Trump has spent the closing weeks of his campaign using outdated stereotypes to appeal to women in the suburbs, several times saying baselessly that a Biden win would result in the ruination of their communities. He has implied that suburban women are White, when those areas have steadily diversified over decades. He has gone out of his way to insult a growing number of prominent women, from journalists to Democratic politicians to members of his own party.
After a town hall in which NBC’s Savannah Guthrie pressed Trump on several questions, he criticized her as “going totally crazy.” At his Michigan rally, he suggested that a foiled plot to kidnap Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer was “maybe . . . a problem, maybe it wasn’t.” The crowd responded with chants of “Lock her up!” Trump has reserved some of his most intense ridicule for women of color. He has repeatedly questioned Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s (D-N.Y.) intellect and whether she attended college, and raised doubts about Rep. Ilhan Omar’s (D-Minn.) love of the United States.
From the deepest conservative states to more Democratic-leaning terrain, Senate Republicans face a brutal political environment that has left the GOP needing to pull off a near-perfect run in a dozen highly competitive races to retain the majority.
That environment, with a pandemic killing nearly 230,000 Americans and leaving millions unemployed, wounded Trump’s standing even in his most reliable states, dragging Republican incumbents down with him and opening new avenues for Democrats to pursue the Senate majority, according to interviews with 10 strategists in both parties deeply involved in Senate races.
Neither side is certain of victory, and the quirks of each state’s vote-counting system mean it could be days, weeks or even a couple of months before senators know which party holds power over presidential appointments and sets the Senate agenda.
But the national landscape, represented through the president’s weakened standing across the ideological spectrum, sent shock waves through Senate Republicans in recent weeks.
Joe Biden leads President Trump by nine percentage points nationally, 52 percent to 43 percent, according to an average of national polls since Oct. 12. New Post-ABC News polls show Biden with a slight lead in Michigan and a much more substantial advantage in Wisconsin. Here’s how polling works and how it’s changed since 2016.
How to vote: Find out the rules in your state, and if you’re voting by mail, see how to make sure your ballot counts. The United States has already hit a record for the number of people who have already voted. Are you running into voting problems? Let us know.
Wondering if that thing you saw about voting is true? Check out news, analysis and fact checking about allegations involving the voting process here.
Here’s what we know about when to expect results, including in key swing states.
Electoral college map: Who actually votes, and who do they vote for? Explore how shifts in turnout and voting patterns for key demographic groups could affect the presidential race.
Battlegrounds: These are the 50 political states of America. Dive into Michigan, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Florida, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, Arizona, Georgia, Texas and Ohio, and sign up for The Trailer and get more states, plus more news and insight from the trail, in your inbox three days a week.
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