Election scorecard.

Where the elections stand today.
Oct. 21 2004 5:24 PM

Election Scorecard

Where the presidential race stands today.

79_happybush
86_sadkerry

If the Election Were Held Today
WinnerLoser

271 Electoral Votes
153 solid, 88 likely, 44 iffy

267 Electoral Votes
174 solid, 53 likely, 26 iffy

64_0410149_legend

Analysis Oct. 21, noon ET: Big lift for Bush in this morning's polls. He's safer in West Virginia, he's in better position to take Ohio, he's in good position to take New Hampshire, and he has taken Wisconsin outright. He loses one electoral vote in Maine, but the 10 from Wisconsin bump him up from 261 to 271, giving him the election.

How to read the tables: The following tables track the latest polls. The first table shows surveys in the most closely contested states. The second table shows surveys in states that are expected to go to one candidate but might be picked off by the other. In the left column, each state and its electoral votes are marked dark red, light red, light blue, or dark blue, depending on which candidate is leading in that state (red for Bush, blue for Kerry) and with what degree of certainty. Slateawards electoral votes based on our poll analysis, which appears in the right-hand column. We color a state gray if it's likely to split its electoral votes. New polls are highlighted in yellow. (A) means a poll was automated. (O) means it was online. (D) means the polling firm is Democratic; (R) means the firm is Republican.

The other tables below track national surveys. In the Trial Heat, respondents were asked for whom they would vote. On Job Approval, they were asked whether they approve or disapprove of Bush's performance. On Re-Elect, they were asked whether Bush deserves to be re-elected or not. On Right Direction, they were asked whether things are going in the right direction or are on the wrong track. On Favorable Rating, they were asked whether they have a favorable or unfavorable impression of each candidate.

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Tightest States
StateBushKerryNaderMarginDatesSponsor/PollsterSlate's Call

 FL
(27)

484713.510/15-19QuinnipiacBush iffy. Mason-Dixon's survey is newer than UNF's and more consistent with most recent polls. Survey USA has Kerry ahead but is automated and excludes Nader. Still, Bush has now led in just three of six nonpartisan conventional October polls. Kerry had two; the other was a tie. Very dangerous for the president. We'll withhold reevaluation until we see consecutive surveys showing Kerry ahead.

(Read Slate's dispatch from Florida.)

50.148.90.32.110/13-18Zogby/WSJ (O)
49 50 N/A 4 10/15-17 SurveyUSA (A)
48 45 N/A 4 10/14-16 Mason-Dixon
44452410/10-15Univ. of North Florida
49451310/12-14Strategic Vision (R)
49461410/8-14Rasmussen (A)
4848 1 4 10/4-10 Washington Post
49441310/4-6Strategic Vision
4844 3 4 10/4-5 Mason-Dixon
51 44 N/A 3.7 10/1-5 Quinnipiac
4749 N/A 4 10/2-5 American Research Group
49.1 49.5 0.5 2.2 9/30-5 Zogby/WSJ (O)
5146 N/A 3.8 10/1-3 SurveyUSA (A)
IA
(7)47.951.1 0.4 4.1 10/13-18Zogby/WSJ (O)Bush iffy. Three October polls (Trib, GOP firm, and Dem firm) put him narrowly ahead. All other October polls are tied, automated, or online. Zogby's is the newest and has Kerry up 3, but that's a gain for Bush in his survey. We'll need to see a more conventional poll before reevaluating. 47472 4 10/10-12 American Research Group 49461310/9-11Strategic Vision (R) 474514.410/8-11Chicago Tribune 4650N/A5.09/27-10/10Rasmussen (A) 4847N/A3.910/4-6SurveyUSA (A) 44.5 51.1 0.2 4.1 9/30-10/5 Zogby/WSJ (O) ME
(4)4551 N/A3.9 10/17-19 SurveyUSA (A)Kerry breathes easier. SurveyUSA has him up 6. That's a steady 7-point gain for him over the past month. It's an automated poll, but we see no reason not to trust such polls for trend data. Let's reevaluate. The evidence that Kerry's lead is below 4 is now thin and old. So it now looks like he'll take the second CD and all 4 EVs.

(Read Slate's dispatch from Maine.)

47 49 N/A 3.9 10/3-5 SurveyUSA (A) 4239459/23-27Strategic Mktg Svs. 4746N/A49/20-22SurveyUSA (A) 4245349/10-23Critical Insights 4448449/8-10American Research Group MN
(10)4747N/A4.510/11-17Rasmussen (A)Kerry likely. He has led in every conventional poll for the past month.

(Read Slate's dispatch from Minnesota.)

45 47 310/12-14Strategic Vision (R) 434823.410/9-11Star-Tribune 434524.410/8-11Chicago Tribune 43501310/2-4Hart Research (D) NV
(5)5245N/A410/16-18SurveyUSA (A)Bush likely. He has led in every conventional poll.

(Read Slate's dispatch from Nevada.)

52 42 N/A 4 10/15-18 Mason-Dixon 50 46 N/A 4 10/1-3 SurveyUSA (A) 4844249/20-28BR&S/Las Vegas Sun 4745N/A59/23Rasmussen (A) 5243159/18-21Gallup NH
(4)47461410/16-19American Research GroupKerry iffy. Mason-Dixon backs up ARG's suggestion that Bush is ahead. Let's reevaluate. Zogby has Kerry up 5, but that's online. Rasmussen has Kerry up 2, but that's automated. Research 2000 has Kerry up 4, but that's a week old. That leaves Suffolk as the only conventional poll to show a Kerry lead in the last week. The average of October polls still tilts to Kerry, but one more conventional survey on Bush's side will probably move this state to his column. 47 49 N/A 4.5 10/18 Rasmussen (A) 48 45 1 4 10/15-18 Mason-Dixon 414614.910/14-17Suffolk Univ.  46.0 51.1 1.1 4.3 10/13-18 Zogby/WSJ (O) 45 49 2 4 10/12-14 Research 2000 47471410/3-5American Research Group 43.9 50.5 1.7 4.1 9/30-10/5 Zogby/WSJ (O) 42491410/3-4Franklin Pierce 504514.39/27-10/3UNH Granite Poll NM
(5)46481410/16-18American Research GroupKerry iffy. This call seemed shaky to us on Tuesday, but critical mass is now gathering behind Kerry. ARG and Zogby are backing up the Albuquerque Journal poll, leaving Gallup as the sole survey leaning to Bush.

(Read Slate's dispatch from New Mexico.)

44.1 53.6 1.0 4.3 10/13-18 Zogby/WSJ (O) 50 47 2 4 10/12-14 CNN/USA 42.5 53.9 1.7 4.2 9/30-10/5 Zogby/WSJ (O) 43462310/1-4Albuquerque Journal 45491410/2-4Hart Research (D) OH
(20)4944N/A3.510/17-18FOX NewsKerry iffy. Yesterday we said the pattern of evidence for Kerry was clear enough that we would need double confirmation of Fox's numbers before reevaluating the state. Today Mason-Dixon gave us the first confirmation. We're a bit wary of this survey because it has more Republicans than Democrats, whereas the 2000 VNS exit poll had 743 Democrats and 664 Republicans. Still, Fox is no longer alone. We'll keep an eye on it.

(Read Slate's dispatch from Ohio.)

46 45 N/A 4 10/15-18 Mason-Dixon 47 49 N/A 3.8 10/16-17 Survey USA (A) 47 50 N/A 3.5 10/14-17 ABC News 47 47 N/A 4 10/12-18 Rasmussen (A) 46 48 N/A 3.6 10/11-17 Ohio Poll 49 47 N/A 4 10/7-13 Rasmussen (A) 51431310/9-11Strategic Vision (R) 4549N/A4.410/8-11Chicago Tribune 47481410/4-6American Research Group 4849N/A3.610/2-4Survey USA (A) 4847N/A49/25-10/2Rasmussen (A) PA
(21)5145N/A410/15-17Survey USA (A)Kerry likely. He leads barely but consistently in all nonpartisan October polls.

(Read Slate's dispatch from Pennsylvania.)

464710/6-12 Rasmussen (A)  46451310/9-11Strategic Vision (R) 4749N/A2.710/9-11Quinnipiac 46481410/4-6American Research Group 4749N/A3.610/3-5 SurveyUSA (A) 4350N/A 4 10/1-4 WHYY/WCU 4349N/A49/30-10/4Keystone 4747N/A49/25-10/1Rasmussen (A) WI
(10)50443410/16-19CNN/USA/GallupBush iffy. Yesterday we doubted Gallup's numbers because it was isolated. Today its lead is bigger, and it is no longer isolated. Let's reevaluate. Three polls have been taken in the last week. One has a tie; the second has Bush up 1; the third has Bush up 6. Only two nonpartisan conventional October surveys show Kerry ahead, and they're getting old. The presumption shifts to Bush. 47 47 N/A 2 10/16-19 American Research Group 48 47 2 4 10/14-19 U of Minnesota 47.5 51.3 0.2 3.3 10/13-18 Zogby/WSJ (O) 47 48 N/A 4.5 10/14 Rasmussen (A) 45 48 N/A 5 10/4-13 Wisconsin Public Radio 49442310/9-11Strategic Vision (R) 434724.410/8-11Chicago Tribune 49462410/3-5CNN/USA/Gallup 48.1 50.6 0.1 3.4 9/30-10/5 Zogby/WSJ (O) 44481510/3-5Lake Snell Perry (D)

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Possible Upsets
StateBushKerryNaderMarginDatesSponsor/PollsterSlate's Call
AZ
(10)
5443 N/A 4 10/17-19 Survey USA (A)Bush pretty safe. Kerry's debate surge brought him within 5 points, but that's probably his high tide.

(Read Slate's dispatch from Arizona.)

47 40 N/A 4 10/18-19 Arizona Republic
4944 N/A 5 10/7-11 NAU
5541N/A4.110/5-7Survey USA (A)
4838N/A4.110/2-4Arizona Republic
CO
(9)5045N/A4.510/18Rasmussen (A)Bush pretty safe. Latest poll indicates the ballot measure to split EVs will fail. Kerry's debate surge brought him within 5 points, but that's probably his high tide. 51 45 1 4 10/14-17 CNN/USA/Gallup 47 42 3 4.9 10/13-14 Rocky Mountain News 5244N/A4.110/5-7Survey USA (A) 5041N/A410/4-6Mason-Dixon 49491510/3-6CNN/USA MI
(17)46.942.71.2510/18-19Detriot NewsKerry probably safe. Detroit News has Bush up 4, but every other October poll puts Kerry ahead, with an average margin of 6.5. Even a Republican survey a week ago had Kerry up 8. We'll need more evidence before believing that the state has shifted that far in a week. 40 48 1 3 10/12-14 Strategic Vision (R) 43482410/11-13Research 2000 4649N/A510/6-12Rasmussen (A) 4252N/A3.910/4-6Survey USA (A) MO
(11)5145N/A3.910/16-18Survey USA (A)Bush pretty safe. Mason-Dixon backs up SurveyUSA with a Bush lead of 5 to 6 points .

(Read Slate's dispatch from Missouri.)

49 44 N/A 4 10/15-18 Mason-Dixon 50.7 47.6 1.1 3 10/13-18 Zogby/WSJ (O) 49 47 N/A 3.8 10/2-4 Survey USA (A) 49.8 47.6 1.3 3 9/30-10/5 Zogby/WSJ (O) 5145N/A59/22-10/5Rasmussen (A) 5044N/A49/16-19American Research Group 4841149/14-16Mason-Dixon 4942N/A3.59/13-16Research 2000 NJ
(15)4351N/A 3.8 10/16-18Survey USA (A)Kerry pulling away after his 5-point lead in one poll collapsed to a tie. 43 44 10/16-18 Strategic Vision (R) 45 49 1 3.510/14-17 Quinnipiac 38 51 N/A N/A 10/14-17 Star-Ledger 4646 2 4.5 10/8-14 FDU Public Mind 41462310/9-11Strategic Vision (R) 4348N/A4.510/7-11FDU Public Mind 4453N/A59/26-10/10Rasmussen (A) 4147N/A4.110/1-6Star-Ledger 4149N/A4.510/1-6FDU Public Mind 464923.810/1-4Quinnipiac 4550N/A3.810/1-3Survey USA (A) OR
(7)4553 N/A 4 10/15-18 CNN/USA

Kerry probably safe. He leads by 5 or more points in five of six October polls.

(Read Slate's dispatch from Oregon.)

44 50 N/A 4 10/9-13 Research 2000 484314.910/9-13Riley Research 44492410/10-12American Research Group 4453 N/A410/9-11Survey USA (A) VA
(13)5046N/A3.910/16-18Survey USA (A)Bush too close for comfort. His 4-point lead in SurveyUSA is plausible, given the 6-point spread in both September polls. 5050N/A59/14-27Rasmussen (A) 4943149/24-27Mason-Dixon 5342N/A3.79/21-23SurveyUSA (A) 4943N/A49/12-14American Research Group WA
(11)4552 N/A 4.1 10/16-18 Survey USA (A)Kerry safe. He has never trailed.

(Read Slate's dispatch from Washington.)

444923  10/4-6Strategic Vision (R) 4354 N/A 4 10/2-4 Survey USA (A) 4350N/A59/10-23Rasmussen (A) WV
(5)48.645.80.74.410/13-18Zogby/WSJ (O)Bush pretty safe. Yesterday we put this state in the danger zone pending the first nonpartisan conventional poll of October. Now we've got that poll, and it shows Bush up by 5, contrary to Democratic and online surveys. He regains the presumption of safety.

(Read Slate's dispatch from West Virginia.)

49  44N/A 4 10/15-18 Mason-Dixon 47 45 2 4 10/12-14 Global Strategy Group (D) 50.1 44.0 0.7 4.4 9/30-10/5 Zogby/WSJ (O) 5145N/A59/17-20Gallup 5044 N/A 4.5 9/14-16 Rasmussen (A) 4646249/14-16American Research Group 4544N/A49/13-19Mason-Dixon

Trial Heat Trend
BushKerryNaderMargin
of Error
DatesVoters SampledSponsor/
Pollster
BushKerrySince
49 48 1 3 10/17-19 Likely Marist0+2 10/4-5
46 45 1 2.9 10/18-20 Likely Reuters/Zogby0 -1 10/17-19
47 45 2 4 10/14-17 Likely NYT/CBS -1 0 10/9-11
50 47 1 3 10/14-17 Likely WP0 +1 10/14-16
52 44 1 4 10/14-16 Likely CNN/USA+4 -5 10/9-10
4750 1 3.1 10/14-16 Likely Democracy Corps-1+2 10/10-11
48452 3.5 10/13-16 Likely TIPP00 10/12-15
4846 N/A 4 10/14-15 Likely Time+2 +1 10/6-7
50441410/14-15Likely NewsweekN/AN/A N/A
48 43 2 3.5 10/9-11 Likely ICR-3 -2 10/1-5
4946 1 3.110/3-7 Likely Battleground-2+2 9/27-30
46 50 2 3 10/4-6 Likely AP-6 +5 9/20-22
46 46 2 3.5 10/2-4 Likely ARG-1 -1 8/30-9/1
47451 310/3-4 Likely Fox+1 +3 9/21-22
49 44 2 4 10/1-3 Likely Pew+2 -2 9/11-14
45 47 2 4 9/30-10/2 Registered Newsweek-4 +4 9/9-10
51 45 2 3 9/25-28 Likely LA TimesN/A N/A N/A
48 402 3.5 9/22-26 Registered Pew+3 -2 9/17-21
48 42 5 4 9/21-23 Likely Time-4 +2 9/7-9
5046149/17-19Likely NBC/WSJN/AN/A 8/23-25
47 48 2 4 9/9-13 Likely Harris0 +1 8/10-15
464633.59/7-12Likely IBD/TIPPN/AN/A

Bush Job Approval Trend
ApproveDisapproveMargin
of Error
DatesVoters SampledSponsor/
Pollster
ApproveDisapproveSince
5147 410/14-16Likely CNN/USA+4-2 10/9-10
4950 3.1 10/14-16 Likely  Democracy Corps0+3  9/19-21
494910/14-15Registered Time-1+3  10/7-9
43 48 10/9-11 Likely  CBS-4 +5  10/1-3
5245 3.1 10/3-7Likely Battleground-1 +2  9/27-30
46 53 10/4-6 Likely  AP -8  +7 9/20-22
49 48 10/4-5 Registered  Marist-1  9/20-22
5343 310/3-4Likely Fox+3 -2  9/21-22
47 43 10/1-3 Likely  CBS/NYT-1 -1  9/20-22
53 45 10/1-3 Likely  ABC/WP+3 +1  9/23-26
49 52 3.1 10/1-3 Likely  Zogby+2 -5  9/17-19
53 43 3.1 9/27-30 Likely  Battleground 0-2  9/23
50 45 9/21-22 Likely  Fox+1 +1  9/7-8
474839/17-19Registered NBC/WSJ008/23-25
5042 39/12-16Registered  CBS/NYT+1 9/6-8 

Re-Elect Trend
YesNo Margin
of Error
DatesVoters SampledSponsor/
Pollster
Yes No Since
4748 10/14-15 Registered Newsweek-1 +2  9/30-10/2 
46 49 2.9 10/8-10 LikelyZogby +1 -1 10/5-7 
45 51 10/6-7 Likely  Time-2 +2  9/21-23
50 47 9/25-28 Likely  LA TimesN/AN/A N/A 
47 49 3.5 9/21-23 Registered Time -5 +4  9/7-9 
455149/9-13Likely HarrisN/AN/A 

Right Direction/Wrong Track Trend
RightWrongMargin
of Error
DatesVoters SampledSponsor/
Pollster
RightWrongSince
39 57 10/14-17 Likely  NYT/CBS-2 +7  10/1-3
4451 3.110/14-16Likely  Democracy Corps+2-2  10/3-5
405510/14-15 Registered  NewsweekN/AN/A N/A 
40533.1 10/3-7Likely  Battleground-1 +3  9/27-30
40 56 10/4-6 Likely AP-5 +4 9/20-22 
41 53 10/4-5 Registered  Marist+3  9/20-22
48 47 3.1 10/1-3 Likely  Zogby+5 -3  9/17-19
41 50 3.1 9/27-30 Likely  Battleground+2 -3  9/23
42 53 9/25-28 Likely  LA TimesN/A N/A N/A 
43 51 3.5 9/21-23 Registered  Time-3 +2  9/7-9

Favorable/Unfavorable RatingBush TrendKerry Trend 
BushKerryMargin
of Error
DatesVoters SampledSponsor/
Pollster
FavUnfavFavUnfavSince
43/45 39/44 10/14-17 Likely  NYT/CBS  -1 +1 -1 +3  10/1-3 
53/42 46/43 10/14-17 Likely  WP -1 +2 10/14-16 
55/44 52/45 10/14-16Likely CNN/USA+4-2 +1  10/9-10
49/4048/3710/14-15Registered Time-5 +2 +5-5  9/7-9
53/4551/44 3.1 10/3-7 Likely  Battleground-3 +3 +3 -4  9/27-30 
48/4250/34 10/6-7 Likely  Time-6+4 +7 -8  9/7-9
52/4346/44 10/3-4 Likely  Fox00-1  9/21-22
57/40 53/41 3.5 10/1-3 Registered  Pew+7 -6 -1 +2  9/11-14
49/4652/40 9/30-10/2 Registered Newsweek-3 +2+4 -4  9/9-10
56/42 48/48 3.1 9/27-30 Likely  Battleground+1-2 +2  9/23
54/46 48/50 9/25-28 Likely  LA TimesN/A N/A N/A N/A N/A 
50/4851/46 3.5 9/20-22 Registered  Marist-1 +1 -5 +8  7/30-8/2 
52/43 47/44 3 9/21-22 Likely Fox+1 0 -1 0 9/7-8
55/44 51/44 3 9/13-15 Likely GallupN/A N/A N/A N/A  
49/46 51/40 2.5 9/11-14 Registered Pew-6 +6 +1 -4 9/8-10

Will Saletan writes about politics, science, technology, and other stuff for Slate. He’s the author of Bearing Right.

David Kenner is a former Slate intern.

Louisa Thomas is on the editorial staff of The New Yorker.

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