US Election 2020: The key states that could decide the result

Olivia Lambert
·News Editor
·5-min read

As the 2020 US election count is well underway, all eyes are on these 10 states that could decide the result of the presidential race.

While some areas are known for razor-thin election tallies, population changes in other states mean results could take a surprising turn.

With Democratic nominee Joe Biden and US President Donald Trump in the race to win 270 votes, here are the states to watch.

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The southeastern state of Florida is worth a whopping 29 votes, a state that holds the most after California and Texas.

This state is of particular interest as it is a swing state known for razor-thin election tallies.

Trump will be hoping to secure the majority of votes in Florida, with him likely to struggle to capture enough other states to stay in office. If Biden loses, there are still other pathways for him to achieve victory.

According to a count by the Associated Press at 2pm AEDT, Trump was leading in the state.

Alex Suarez (left) and Ralph Reichard watch a broadcast of CNN showing presidential election returns at an election night watch party.
Biden supporters in Florida, an all-important state. Source: Getty Images


Once a long-running Democratic state, the blues lost the majority of votes in the 2016 election when Hillary Clinton ran against Trump.

However the Republican only took hold of the state by little more than one per cent, meaning the Democrats have a chance of wrestling it back.

Pennsylvania has a lot of clout when it comes to the election, with the state worth 20 votes.

As the count continues, Biden has a significant lead on Trump in the state.

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden speaks to reporters.
Joe Biden is currently leading in Pennsylvania. Source: Getty Images


Trump claimed a 2016 election victory in the state by eight per cent, however it appears to be tightening in this year’s presidential race.

With the state worth 18 electoral votes, Biden made some eleventh-hour efforts to convert it to a blue state by making a last-minute campaign stop in Cleveland on Monday (local time) and expanding ad buys to every corner of Ohio.

With Biden pushing into traditionally Republican areas, it could signal his campaign’s hope the state could be within his grasp.

As at 2pm AEDT, Biden has the lead over Trump.


The interesting shift in Georgia is its population, meaning the long Republican Party stronghold could start to swing towards the Democrats.

With the state worth 16 electoral votes, it’s a battleground for the presidential candidates.

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In 2016, Trump won the state by five per cent, but the Republican’s grip on the state is loosening as older, white, Republican-leaning voters die. They are being replaced by younger people – with many Democratic voters flocking to Atlanta from other states.

At the time of publication, Trump has the lead in the state.


In a state worth 16 votes, Michigan has long been a Democratic stronghold. But Trump snatched it away in 2016 by appealing to the working-class voters while Clinton suffered a poor turnout of Black voters in Detroit.

But this year Biden has teamed up with former president Barack Obama to campaign in predominately Black cities where the turnout will be paramount in order for Michigan to turn to a blue state.

Trump is so far in the lead.

President Donald Trump talks to members of the media before boarding Marine One from the South Lawn of the White House.
US President Donald Trump is leading in Michigan. Source: Getty Images


Worth 11 electoral votes, Arizona is one to watch with those living in the suburbs becoming more skeptical of Trump and his policies.

In the past, Arizona has been known as a Republican stronghold, with Trump claiming victory in the 2016 election.

However in 2018, Senator Kyrsten Sinema became the first Democrat in three decades to win a US Senate seat.

Democrats also won three statewide offices, five of nine congressional seats and made gains in the state legislature that year – giving the party more hope of securing the state this election.

No results have been recorded in the state just yet.


As coronavirus cases spike in Wisconsin, Trump’s response to the pandemic will be at the forefront of many voters’ minds.

Trump won the state in the 2016 election, but for him to take hold again will rely heavily on securing votes in urban areas like Milwaukee and Madison.

According to AP, recent polling suggests Trump isn’t doing as well in the state, worth 10 electoral votes, this time around.

Trump has taken a slight lead however as voting commences.


The Democrats believe they might have a chance of securing Iowa despite Trump winning in 2016. It’s not a must-win state for Biden, but if the president loses it would significantly narrow his path to victory.

The public health and economic crises as a result of the coronavirus pandemic could be bad news for Trump.

So far no results have yet been recorded for the state.


The Democrats are confident of winning Nevada after Trump lost the state in 2016, but the president believes he can flip it.

During his campaign, Trump invested heavily in the state in the hope of turning voters. While the Trump campaign was on the ground in Nevada, Biden relied on a virtual campaign amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Voters wait in a line to vote outside of Bob Ruud Community Center on Election Day.
Voters wait in line at a polling booth in Nevada. Source: Getty Images

The Democrats fear increasing support for Trump from Latinos and non-college education, white voters, two important constituencies in the state, could secure the president a win.

The state is worth 11 electoral votes.

No results are yet recorded for Nevada.

North Carolina

Trump secured North Carolina, which has 15 electoral votes, in the 2016 election – but Biden has focused on targeting urban areas with his running mate, Kamala Harris, also campaigning heavily in the state.

The president however has been putting in his own ground work, holding a rally in the state on Sunday, just days before Americans headed to the polls.

Currently Biden is leading the state.

with AP

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