Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden has won back the key swing state of Michigan for the Democrats after the state drew the red card for President Donald Trump in 2016. Several networks, including CNN and CBS, called the state for Biden on Wednesday afternoon.
With 97 percent of the votes counted, Biden Trump leads by 1.2 percent, 49.8 percent to 48.6 percent, with CNN calling the state for the Democratic candidate. As the tenth most populous state in the nation, Michigan has 16 electoral votes – a significant prize in the race to win Electoral College.
Trump narrowly won Michigan 2016 with a lead of only 0.2 percent. The president’s previous victory in the state was considered a coup, as polls had indicated that Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton would win. Previously, President Barack Obama had led the state by almost 10 percentage points in 2012 and by more than 16 points in 2008. Four years ago Trump was the first Republican to win in the state since 1988.
Before election day, polls indicated that Biden was favored as the winner. On average in Michigan’s Real Clear Politics polls, the Democratic challenger was ahead by just over 5 percentage points on November 2. In Morning Consult’s polls, Biden was ahead by about 7 percentage points, with 51.8 percent of Michigan voters supporting Trump, compared with only 44.5 percent who supported Trump. However, in the Trafalgar Group polls, Trump was just ahead of Trump by 2 percentage points.
Trump and Biden and campaign surrogates visited the state in the Midwest several times in the last days of the election campaign. While the president wanted to hold on to the territory he had narrowly won in 2016, the Democratic challenger sought to energize voters who many took for granted Clinton 2016.
Beyond the polls, the Democrats were optimistic about the state of the country, as they won in the 2018 midterm elections. Michiganders voted Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer and a number of other Democrats to take over the executive leadership in Lansing. The Michigan Democrats also managed to relinquish two GOP-held congressional seats in the midterm elections and elected Elissa Slotkin (Holly) and Haley Stevens (Rochester Hills) to the House of Representatives.
Before the election, Michigan’s governor expressed her confidence that Biden would lead her state.
“I am confident,” Whitmer said Saturday in an interview with ABC’s Good Morning America. “Debbie Dingell and I talk all the time, and we are naturally concerned; we don’t take anything for granted. But the thing is the thing with Joe Biden: His plan to get the American economy back on track and in sync with COVID, and put our arms around COVID, that’s the way we really do things,” she said.