One Finite Planet

One Finite Planet

US Election: Why The Flip The Switch States?

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The whole 2020 US Election scenario was extremely predictable. That is because it was predictable there would be states with an early count favouring Trump, even when the majority of the state voted for Biden.

This ‘flip’ happens all the time. Imagine people in a large hall. The master of ceremonies asks ‘all those who want option A’, raise your hands. Someone counts the hands “one, two, three… ” until the count reaches… say 250. Then the master of ceremonies says, ‘now I want all those who want option B to raise their hands’. A second count commences. Now imagine if people in the crowd who want option A start calling for the count to stop, because there were in front, but their lead is now continually eroded with each count.

It turns out, in the key 5 states, the US election was very much like counting votes in a hall: count all those in favour of Trump first, then all those against. Of course Trump will get a lead from the start and only start to lose that lead near the end of the second half of the count.

Wait, the count is AFTER voting, no new votes!

Yes, that ‘counting hands’ is not a perfect analogy. Everyone write down their vote on a piece of paper. Group A, put your votes in the first bucket, and group B, put your votes into the second bucket. Then we will count the buckets one at a time. Whatever ‘Group A’ vote for will be ahead until the very end.

Who Divided Voters into Two Groups?

Republicans and Democrats are not asked to place their votes in different ways, so how is it voters are divided into two groups? Covid-19 divided the voters. If you do not fear Covid-19, vote on election day, and you vote goes into the election do bucket. If you do fear Covid-19, vote by mail, drop off or vote early. Overall, republicans predominantly do not fear Covid-19, so their votes went into the ‘on election day’ bucket. Overall, Democrats are more concerned by Covid-19, so most of their votes went into the ‘not on election day bucket’.

This means any state where the vote is reasonably close and they count the ‘election day bucket’ first, will give an early lead to Trump, even if most voters voted for Biden.

Why Only 5 States?

To have this early lead for Trump, you need count the ‘election day bucket’ before the other bucket. Many states count both buckets in parallel. To have the early lead for Trump still at the end of the night, you need to also be a state with a close contest where not all votes can be counted by the end of the night on election day. In the end, if Trump has an early lead, if he will maintain that lead the leader will not flip once all votes are counted.

Only five states met all criteria: a close contest, count the ‘other’ bucket (with mostly Democrat votes) last, and still have sufficient votes to count after election night.

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