With only a few days left until the presidential election, nominees Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are hitting the campaign trail hard.
With only three more scheduled stops in Ohio, New Hampshire and Pennsylvania, the former Secretary of State’s schedule is far less busy than Trump’s. Trump plans to visit Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Florida, North Carolina, back to Pennsylvania and then finally ending in New Hampshire.
The reason for this? One could be the struggle for Trump to find a path to 270 electoral votes.
Clinton’s electoral college vote is around 267 without her winning a single toss-up state while Trump is only around 194 without toss-up states, according to FiveThirtyEight. The site also gives Clinton an overall 64.5 percent chance of winning the presidency compared to Trump’s 35.5 percent chance.
In order to understand why Trump is at such a disadvantage compared to Clinton, we have to look at the remaining toss-up states and what each candidate must do to get to 270.
Clinton Paths to 270
Of the remaining toss-up states – Florida (28), Ohio (18), North Carolina (15), Nevada (6) and New Hampshire (4) – Clinton only needs to win around 4 electoral votes. If she were to win any of these five most crucial toss-up states she would presumably cross the 270 vote threshold.
If Trump were to flip a blue swing state, such as Michigan, Pennsylvania, Minnesota or Wisconsin, Clinton would need to win either Florida, Ohio or North Carolina.
Trump Paths to 270
Starting off the night with only around 194 electoral votes, Trump has a lot of ground to make up.
In order to reach 270 votes, Trump absolutely has to win Florida, Ohio and North Carolina, however, that’s no easy task. They’re the biggest swing states and could go to either candidate very easily. FiveThirtyEight gives Trump a 52.6 percent chance of winning Florida, 51.6 percent for North Carolina and 67.1 percent for Ohio.
If he loses any one of those he will most likely not reach 270. After winning those three he would be at 255 votes, which means in order to get the remaining 15 votes he’ll have to turn a blue state red. Even if he wins Nevada and New Hampshire he’d still need to flip a blue state.
That leaves the Trump campaign with four possible states – Minnesota (10), Michigan (16), Wisconsin (10) and Pennsylvania (20). This will prove to be tough as all the recent polls favor Clinton in these states and FiveThirtyEight only gives Trump a 19.2 percent of winning Minnesota, 23.9 percent for Michigan, 22.4 percent for Wisconsin and 25.9 percent for Pennsylvania.