The United States presidential election is in 9 days.
Here is a summary of the top 5 political issues making headlines today.
1. Trump, Biden make pitch to swing-state voters
U.S. President Donald Trump began Saturday casting a vote for “ a guy named Trump” in West Palm Beach, Florida, then was scheduled to make campaign stops in Lumberton, North Carolina, Circleville, Ohio, and Waukesha, Wisconsin, before returning to the White House.
Trump’s busy day highlighted the role those four battleground states could play in determining whether Trump or his Democratic opponent, Joe Biden, gain the needed 270 electoral votes to win the presidential election on November 3. The four states have a combined 72 electoral votes and polls show that either candidate still has a chance of winning in each state.
With help from rock legend Jon Bon Jovi, Biden spent Saturday campaigning in parts of Pennsylvania that could go either way in the hotly contested state.
Trump won 56 of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties in 2016 by a total of just over 44,000 votes.
a. https://edition.cnn.com/2020/10/24/politics/trump-republicans-down-ballot-races-analysis/index.html – How Trump is dragging down fellow Republicans
b. https://6abc.com/2020-election-swing-states-who-wins-pennsylvania-donald-trump/6890892/ – Watch Inside Story: Will Pennsylvania decide the 2020 Presidential Election?
2. Pennsylvania court makes key ruling on voters’ signatures
It threatened to be a lurking issue in this year’s U.S. presidential election if Pennsylania’s 20 electoral votes ended up a determining factor.
But the state’s Supreme Court ruled unanimously on Friday that mail-in ballots and applications can’t be challenged or rejected for signature mismatches.
Nearly a third of the state’s 9 million registered voters have applied for a mail-in or absentee ballot, and two thirds of those voters are Democrats, CBS News reported.
U.S. President Donald Trump has repeatedly raised the issue of fraud regarding mail-in and absentee ballots.
a. https://www.npr.org/2020/10/23/926258497/when-will-mail-in-ballots-be-counted-see-states-processing-timelines – When Will Mail-In Ballots Be Counted? See States’ Processing Timelines
3. Pollster who predicted 2016 victory says Trump will win again
Pollster Robert Cahaly predicted a Donald Trump victory in 2016 and he does so again.
Just like last time, most of his fellow pollsters disagree.
The head pollster of the Georgia-based Trafalgar Group follows a model that takes into account social pressures that lead many people to try to hide their true support for a polarizing candidate such as Trump.
Cahaly says it is the “hidden” votes that will lead to Trump’s reelection.
“When you see people be beat up, harassed, doxxed, and we see their houses torn up because they express political opinions that are not in line with the political correct establishment,” many are not likely to share their real feelings with pollsters, Cahaly told Breitbart News.
Another factor in play Cahaly told The National Review is that “conservatives are less likely to participate in polls in general.”
“We see a five-to-one refusal rate among conservatives,” he said. That means “you’ve got to work very hard to get a fair representation of conservatives when you do any kind of a survey.”
a. https://www.pennlive.com/opinion/2020/10/will-trump-prove-the-polls-wrong-again-it-depends-on-who-pollsters-are-talking-to-analysis.html – Will Trump prove the polls wrong again? It depends on who pollsters are talking to | Analysis
b. https://apnews.com/article/election-2020-joe-biden-donald-trump-virus-outbreak-pennsylvania-725737c0ca8ba8dd3c23fb432d48a6f4 – Road to 270: Trump’s best path to victory hinges on FL, PA
4. Biden’s oil transition comments bring heat and praise
It was a comment he might sincerely believe but probably wish he had not made in Thursday night’s debate with U.S. President Donald Trump in Nashville, Tennessee.
Republicans in states where the oil industry has long been vital and in some of those where fracking — a method of drilling deep down into the earth for gas — has become a fairly new source of revenue and jobs seized on Biden’s statement.
Lindsey Graham, a Republican senator from South Carolina, said “Biden just lost Pennsylvania tonight,” in reference to the crucial swing state and its energy industry, while Greg Abbott, the Texas governor, said Biden “just killed paychecks earned by hardworking families in Texas.”
As for Biden, he tried to end the potential political damage after the debate, telling reporters: “We’re not going to get rid of fossil fuels, and “we’re not going to get rid of subsidies for fossil fuels.”
a. https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/climate-portion-of-final-trump-biden-debate-revolved-around-ending-oil-wind-fumes/ – Climate Portion of Final Trump-Biden Debate Revolved Around Ending Oil, Wind ‘Fumes’
b. https://www.barrons.com/articles/where-trump-and-biden-stand-on-energy-and-climate-policy-51602174618 – No, Biden Won’t Ban Fracking. Here’s Where the Candidates Stand on Energy.
5. Alaska U.S. senator to vote for Barrett despite process
Lisa Murkowski, a Republican U.S. senator from Alaska, said Saturday she will vote to confirm Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, despite her opposition to voting on a high court nominee with the elections so soon.
Murkowski said she will vote against advancing the nomination on a procedural hurdle on Sunday but then vote for Barrett to be confirmed on Monday.
“I’ve concluded she’s the sort of person we want on the Supreme Court,” Murkowski said of Barrett, whose conservative record and the way her nomination was rushed through have drawn anger and even a voting boycott from Senate Judiciary Committee Democrats.
“While I oppose the process that led us to this point, I do not hold it against her,” Murkowski said.
There is little doubt about Barrett becoming a sixth conservative vote on the court as Republicans hold a 53-seat majority in the Senate.
a. https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/oct/12/amy-coney-barrett-supreme-court-confirmation – What Amy Coney Barrett’s likely confirmation means for America
b. https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/if-elected-who-would-joe-biden-pick-for-the-supreme-court/ar-BB19iRhm – If Elected, Who Would Joe Biden Pick for the Supreme Court?