Our latest book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics. The 2024 race has begun.
Ronald Brownstein at CNN
Multiple measures track the evolution of what could be called the incredible shrinking presidential battlefield.
The most revealing is the growing number of states where either party has established a consistent advantage in the presidential race. Twenty states have voted for the Democratic nominee in each of the past four presidential elections, from Barack Obama’s first win in 2008 through Joe Biden’s victory in 2020. Twenty states have likewise voted for the GOP presidential nominee in all four of those contests.
That means 40 of the 50 states, or 80%, have voted the same way in four consecutive presidential elections. That’s the highest level of such consistency since the turn of the 20th century. Even when Franklin D. Roosevelt won four consecutive elections from 1932 through 1944, only about two-thirds of the states voted the same way each time. Just under three-fourths of the states voted the same way in the four consecutive Republican presidential victories from 1896 to 1908. From 1976 through 1988, only half the states voted the same way each time.
After the results in the 2022 election, my own judgment is that the list of true swing states entirely within reach for either side may dwindle to no more than Arizona, Georgia, Nevada and Wisconsin.