DC News Insiders Forecast 2020 Election

Oct 23, 2020 | Heart+Mind Pulse, Politics, RoundTable Connections


Our latest RoundTable discussion (held October 22, 2020) welcomed back the WTOP News media insiders Mitchell Miller, Capitol Hill correspondent, and Joel Oxely and Craig Schwalb, leaders for WTOP News business including political and commercial advertising to forecast 2020 election.

The RoundTable kicked off with a recap of our latest public opinion tracking specifically on the upcoming election: what is the forecast, what is changing (why and among whom), and what it means going forward. As our public policy consultant Erin Norman walked through the data, moderator Maury Giles posed questions to the panel, who expounded on topics such as what we can expect from voter turnout on election day, how the media affects voters perceptions of the candidates, whether or not the presidential debates will have an impact on voters, and how might the new administration affect the division that is growing in our society.

RELATED: 2020 Election Voter Coalition Papers

Heart+Mind Pulse

Our biweekly tracker has been gathering data some of the drivers, influences and coalitions of the election for the past few months. With this penultimate tracking wave before election day, patterns are beginning to emerge.  Following are some of the key storylines from our tracking data:

  • Biden Pulls Ahead: Biden’s lead over Trump has expanded in the last two weeks.  Among likely and actual voters Biden is ahead. But because Biden’s supporters are disproportionately voting early, those who are likely voters, but have not yet voted, are slightly more likely to support President Trump.
  • Conservative Policies Are More Popular: Despite Biden appearing ahead in the polls, most Americans prefer a more conservative approach to policies regarding jobs, taxes and race relations compared to Biden’s stated platform or the suggestions of the more progressive wing of the party. However, for healthcare, there is a slight preference among Americans and political independents for Biden’s policy to keep the Affordable Care Act but build and improve on it.
  • Settling Into the New Normal:  Seven months into the pandemic, 9 out of 10 Americans have developed new routines that are working for them.  The most common changes have been how folks connect with family members, how they enjoy entertainment, and how food is prepared/eaten.

Our reports with the latest tracking data, charts, and storylines from our biweekly national omnibus survey, the Heart+Mind Pulse, can be downloaded using the following links:



Data Source: Heart+Mind Strategies fielded a series of questions 10/14-15/2020 via an online survey.  

Sample: n=1,002 US Adults 18+

Topics: We explored attitudes, feelings, and actions with respect to the COVID-19 crisis and upcoming presidential election. This provides a quick look at the key storylines we uncovered by quickly digging into the data set.

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