Clinton vs. Trump: 6 Surprising but Possible Election Outcomes

Trump Clinton, Trump Clinton 2016 election, donald trump hillary clinton

Which presidential candidate will win Florida this year?

Everyone’s creating electoral college maps, and a lot of them predict what’s most likely (that’s a Hillary Clinton victory based on the math). But let’s be honest: What’s been predictable about this election season?

We saw a brash businessman turned reality star turned politician seize the nomination of the Republican Party while running against it (a nomination which none of the pundits thought he would win). We saw the former First Lady kneecapped by a sudden letter from the FBI director, who announced he was going to investigate her emails again shortly before the election only to say Sunday: Never mind.

Nothing about this election has been typical, and both candidates have a plausible pathway to the presidency. We will start with the more conventional map to set the stage, and then we will look at 6 surprising – but still possible based on latest presidential polls – election outcomes.

Here’s the map showing a Clinton victory based on each candidate being given the states he or she is leading in the current battleground polling averages on the RealClearPolitics site. You can see how formidable the math is for Trump; he even wins Florida, but she still gets the White House (although New Hampshire is currently in the margin of error and a possible Trump pickup, which would flip the math here to a Trump win):


Plus, the map above gives him Florida, which he’s only leading in the polling averages by 0.2%. The electoral college represents a formidable task, which is why you’re now seeing Trump competing for traditionally blue states where he’s behind in the polls. He has to win everything that’s deadlocked to have a chance, and that’s a tough pathway.

Now 6 possible outcomes that could surprise. (Maps are courtesy of RealClear Politics.)

1. Trump Wins Pennsylvania


Trump has a chance in Pennsylvania. Clinton leads there, but her lead has been shrinking as Trump finds support in western Pennsylvania due to economic angst, labor issues, and rising Obamacare premiums (think Philly vs. Pittsburgh). Pennsylvania would go such a long way for Trump that it would give him a cushion. Look at the map above. He could afford to lose other deadlocked states if he wins Pennsylvania (like Nevada or a state like Iowa, where he leads but not by a lot).

Why would this be a surprise? Because Pennsylvania hasn’t gone for a Republican since 1988. However, the state has 20 electoral votes, making it quite a prize for someone who wants to redraw the map. Barack Obama won Pennsylvania 52% to 46.6%.

What do recent polls say? Clinton leads by a meager average of 1.9% in RealClearPolitics polling averages, an average that has steadily shrunk in the past week. The most recent poll by a Republican polling group found Trump leading by 1. Of the 5 other most recent polls, one showed the race a tie, two showed Clinton leading by 4, and two showed Clinton leading by 2.

How much has the gap closed? Clinton led by 10 on August 28 in the polling averages. She led by 8.4 on October 14. She led by 5.2 on October 29.

Yes, this would be a surprise – a big upset. But it’s possible.

You can read more about Pennsylvania and the election here:

Clinton vs. Trump: Can Trump Win Pennsylvania as Polls Tighten?

Pennsylvania presidential polls are giving Democrats heartburn as the race tightens and people wonder: Could Donald Trump win Pennsylvania and its 20 electoral votes?

Click here to read more

Read more about it in Spanish in

2. Clinton Wins Arizona


Why would this be surprising? It would be surprising because Arizona has only gone for a Democrat one time since 1948 (Harry Truman won the state in 1948). That Democrat? Bill Clinton in 1996, and that margin was close. Moderates and independents gave Clinton Arizona, and GOP officials there said he embraced some of their themes to win.

Notice that the map above gives Trump Florida (no sure thing) just to demonstrate the power of a Clinton win in Arizona. She could lose other important battlegrounds, like North Carolina, New Hampshire, and Ohio, if she wins Arizona.

What evidence is there to even think this is remotely plausible? Polls. And demographics. Trump currently leads Arizona by 4% in RealClearPolitics polling averages, but Clinton was ahead (slightly) in the polling averages as recently as October 31. She’s never led in polling averages in Arizona by more than 1.5%, though, demonstrating that if she does win Arizona, it would likely be a squeaker.

Giving Clinton hope: Latino turnout is up, and Democrats said early voting numbers showed they were ahead of their 2012 pace.

Hispanic turnout in early voting had doubled. Learn more about that here:

Arizona Early Voting Results: Hispanic Turnout Up, Republican Turnout Down

More Hispanic voters are casting ballots early in Arizona than did by this point in 2012. Could Hillary Clinton, not Donald Trump, win the state?

Click here to read more

Read more about Donald Trump’s odds of winning in Spanish at

¿Cuáles son las Probabilidades que Donald Trump Gane la Elección?

¿Puede Donald Trump gana la elección? Estas son las probabilidades que el candidato republicano gane el martes.

Click here to read more

3. Trump Wins Minnesota


Is Minnesota really in play? Trump seems to think it is; after all, he jetted to the state to give a speech in an airport hangar, using valuable time in the run up to the election. He was met by thousands. A Minnesota win for Trump would be surprising because the last time the state voted for a Republican for president was 1972. To put that in context, Melania Trump was born in 1970.

Here’s what a Minnesota win would do for Trump: It would allow him to lose other deadlocked battlegrounds, like Nevada (where a local TV reporter analyzing early voting returns says they predict a Clinton win.) This map is still predicated on Trump winning Florida, though (almost all electoral college maps predicting a victory for him require him to secure Florida).

Jesse Ventura Myron May

The polls contradict him. Clinton leads by 11 and 8 in the most recent Minnesota polling in the RealClearPolitics database. However, the polling is dated. It was conducted largely before James Comey’s first letter to Congress and the federal government’s news that Obamacare premiums were going up in Minnesota by 59%.

There hasn’t been a lot of recent non-online polling out of Minnesota, Minnesota elected a reality star before as governor (Jesse “The Body” Ventura!), it was the site of a mall mass stabbing by an immigrant, the state is riven by Somali refugee tensions (which Trump highlighted in his speech), and it has the fourth highest Obamacare premium increase in the country (2% of the population is facing a massive increase without corresponding subsidies and tax credits, announced just October 24, leading even the Democratic governor to say it’s not affordable anymore).

The perfect storm?

However, FiveThirtyEight, which has analyzed all polling out of Minnesota, online or not, gives Trump only a 14.2% chance of winning the state. There was good news for Trump out of a poll in a Minnesota Congressional district that usually votes Democratic, though.

Read more about Minnesota and the presidential election here:

Clinton vs. Trump Polls: Why Trump Is Going to Minnesota

Latest 2016 presidential polls are tighter, but Clinton vs. Trump isn't that close in Minnesota. Trump surprised by going there Sunday despite Hillary's lead. Here's why.

Click here to read more

4. Clinton Wins Georgia


Clinton has kept Georgia in play, although Trump has broken into more of a lead there lately. The reason it’s in play? Almost one third of the state is African-American, and African-Americans vote more lopsidedly for Clinton than even Latino voters do. In one recent Georgia poll, 88% of African-American voters in Georgia selected Clinton (However, Obama received 93 percent of the black vote nationally.)

Georgia would allow Clinton to weather losing some really big states, like Florida, North Carolina, AND Ohio. Indeed, it allows her to basically lose all other deadlocked states and still win the White House. One pick up, and it’s game over.

According to Slate, Georgia’s changing demographics have helped put the state in play for Clinton. The white percentage of the population has declined from 63 percent in 2000 to 54 percent today, whereas black, Latino and Asian populations have all increased, Slate said.

The key for Clinton here is turnout. Independents were breaking Trump’s way in recent polling, making this a tough pick up for Clinton. But a possible one. Georgia would allow her to redraw the map and weather losing a string of other deadlocked battleground states.

5. Trump Wins New Mexico


New Mexico, you say? Yes, that would be a surprise. It hasn’t even factored into most battleground discussions anymore because it seemed solidly for Hillary.

New Mexico would be an insurance policy, allowing Trump to lose another battleground state, like New Hampshire. New Mexico last voted for a Republican in 2004 (George W. Bush).

Thus, a victory by Trump in New Mexico would be a surprise. Why is it even possible, though? The polls have shown Clinton with a lead, but it’s closer than Mitt Romney ran against Obama in New Mexico, said National Review. However, early voting in New Mexico has also picked up a surge in Hispanic turnout, which bodes well for Clinton.

There hasn’t been a lot of polling out of New Mexico, which always increases the chances of polling error. Clinton led by only 2 percentage points in a poll announced November 6. That’s in the margin of error. The poll found that more Democrats were crossing over to vote for Trump than Republicans were crossing over to vote for Hillary (this would be a shift not detectable in early voting returns that just report partisan affiliation, if that).

The RealClearPolitics polling average has Clinton up 5 percentage points in the state. She was up by 5 and 8 in two other slightly older polls. The race is now on the RealClearPolitics battleground list, replacing Georgia there.

6. McMullin Wins Utah


The chances of independent candidate Evan McMullin pulling off a victory in Utah have been diminishing recently, but he’s from Utah, he’s a Mormon, and Mitt Romney’s home has never warmed up to the New York entrepreneur hammered with sexual assault allegations. Some polls were picking up support for McMullin, although voters weren’t asked about him by all pollsters.

A Utah win for McMullin would devastate Trump’s chances. Is it likely? Well, no. But it’s possible. Hence, it would be a surprise. After all, Utah has voted Republican for 52 years, but some conservatives think McMullin is the only conservative in the race. The Weekly Standard says Trump now leads between 5-10 percentage points in Utah polls.

Read more about McMullin’s chances in Utah here:

Does Evan McMullin Have a Chance to Win Utah?

Evan McMullin is a relative unknown around the county, but the third party candidate is gaining traction in Utah. Could he beat Donald Trump there?

Click here to read more

Clinton vs. Trump: Who leads Battleground State Polls Nov. 7?

2016 presidential polls show that Clinton vs. Trump remains a tight race in key battleground states in polling as of November 7.

Click here to read more

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  1. Trump wins New Jersey? (Ref.: Several ‘scenarios’ above…)
    …Know something that most polls don’t? (I.e., Several prominent ones indicating Clinton up by at least 10 there.)

    It’s generally not even considered a ‘battleground’ state…Solid ‘blue’.

  2. Still waiting to see a Hillary supporter give an actual reason to vote Hillary, rather than reasons not to vote Trump. And most of those reasons not to support Trump are issues the Clintons would bring onboard as well.

    • – National security & military experts from both parties are warning us about Trump’s dangerous ignorance & unhinged temperament. They aren’t warning us about Clinton. Why? Because they know that Trump’s dangerous shortcomings aren’t in the same league as Clinton’s imperfections. In other words, Clinton may not be a saint but she won’t blow up half the world if she thinks she’s been insulted.
      – Clinton is battle-tested, which is admirable in this election. Trump has zero experience in politics & it shows. Donald Trump mistook a black supporter for a protester and called him a “thug”, had him kicked out of his own rally. Also kicked out a disabled kid in a wheelchair this past weekend. Trump is a thin-skinned, spineless pansy. He threatens to sue or jail anyone who offends him.
      – Clinton is uniquely knowledgeable about the presidency. Trump is so clueless about the presidency, he doesn’t know or care that much of what he proposes is unconstitutional or illegal. He thought he could joke about sexual assault & still have it easy.
      – Clinton has shown her taxes. Trump won’t release his taxes. Trump blocked his staff from doing opposition research on him. What is Trump hiding, that he wouldn’t want his own staff to know about?
      – Clinton has experience from her Senate years of working w/Republicans. Her husband showed an ability to reach across the aisle & the country was generally prosperous because of it. Trump has decided he won’t work w/any Democrats. He wants to throw anyone who opposes him in jail.
      – Thanks to Bernie Sanders, Clinton is focusing more on solutions that take into account the anger of struggling Americans who’ve been ignored by the “elites”. (That means you, Trump supporters). Trump could care less about the issues that are important to his supporters.
      – – Clinton has managed to keep her message in this campaign largely positive & focused on unifying the country rather than divisiveness. Given Trump’s crazy mud slinging, that’s been particularly challenging
      “The best argument for a Clinton presidency is that she’s virtually guaranteed to be a capable steward of the status quo, at a time of relative stability and safety. There are criticisms to make of Hillary Clinton, but the grid isn’t going to collapse while she’s in office, something no one can say with even mild confidence about Donald Trump, who is narcissistic, clearly unhinged and vindictive by nature.”

      • . Clinton political experience have fixed nothing in the past rather than worsen the situations , no one forget what she did on Benghazi and in danger the country security by her careless handling on classified emails. We had enough of mainstream media Bs history but needs stick with a truth. If any authority talks against trump ,that doesn’t mean they are correct. you better check on their back wether they are payed surrogates of corrupted Clinton machine.

        • Do you even know where Benghazi is on a map? Heck can you even find Libya for that matter? Let’s be real for a second most Americans are ignorant about the world unless it’s related to a smear campaign or they are about to bomb it. Hillary has a lot more experience and is the ideal candidate, if the Republicans actually considered bringing someone with experience not some business guy I would vote for the one that is most qualified.

  3. Reported by the Washington Post & Huffington Post
    Over the weekend, Trump had a disabled kid in a wheelchair thrown out of his rally, for holding a Clinton sign. The kid, who has cerebral palsy, asked his mother to bring him to the rally so he could protest Trump’s disparagement of the disabled. As the kid was wheeled out, people booed at him, kicked his chair & yelled obscenities at him. Trump verbally encouraged the crowd, pointed at the kid, shouting, “Get him out of here!”.

    This election is too unpredictable & too important to not vote or to waste a vote on a 3rd party. If we don’t vote for Clinton, we risk another election of 2000 scenario. Except Trump is more cruel, more ignorant & more dangerous than Bush ever was, for reasons that have been well documented. Please listen to the experts. Please Vote Clinton/Kaine 2016 if you want Obama’s legacy to continue, and if you want sanity rather than chaos to rule our government for the next 4 years.

    (Please share this story as a final reminder for why we need to keep Trump away from the Oval office.

    • Another paid protester ? How could at politician survive the exposure wiki leaks has give to Clinton campaign. It is a bunch of thugs that should be put in jail.

  4. Hillary has no brain to be honest. She is just one of those parrots who speaks after you. She never speaks her own mind except told them to do so . With out her mentor and second brain Human Abbedin ,she can’t even manage her own business let alone this big nation with many complexe problems and international affairs. She is flat incompetent to lead this great nation.

  5. Why Donald Trump will win? Let me remind here a fragment of an ancient vision: “And [the king of the north] will go back (to) his land with great wealth [1945. This detail indicated that Hitler will attack also the Soviet Union and will fight to the bitter end. In the beginning there were no signs of such the ending of this war]; and his heart (will be) against the holy covenant [hostility towards Christians]; and will act [it means activity in the international arena]; and turned back to his own land [1991-1993. The collapse of the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact. Russian troops returned to their country]. At the appointed time [he] will return back.” (Daniel 11:28, 29a) The return of Russia in this context means the breakup of the European Union and NATO. Many countries of the former Eastern block reconciled with Russia. Such is the plan of God. It is no coincidence that Obama is currently the president of the United States. God in this way has secured us against a premature world war. The first should be the return of Russia, and then the war, and not vice versa. (Daniel 11:29,30; Matthew 24:7; Revelation 6:4; cf. Jeremiah 1:12) American-Russian relations are very strained. It is true that Hillary Clinton’s foreign policy plan in Syria would trigger World War Three, therefore now Trump will win. The world will be safer, at least for a moment.

    In 1882 British troops occupied Egypt. Great Britain then took the role of “the king of the south”. Around the same time, Russia expanded its influence in the region, which previously belonged to Seleucus I Nicator, and took the role of “the king of the north”. (Daniel 11:27)

    All the details of this vision are being fulfilled from the time of ancient Persia, in chronological order. It is true that this vision is variously interpreted. As one can see, it has a lot of details. Therefore the insightful person is able to detect any error or sophistry. (Daniel 12:10)

    • If Hillary actually had the power to do what you claim in Syria, I’d be surprised.
      The reality is much more complicated than that, and it starts all the way back in 2003, even before Obama was in power. Whoever wins (Trump or Hillary) will have to follow orders to continue with this war because the pipelines from Iraq and Saudi Arabia needs to go through Syria in order to reach Turkey.
      If you ever think the pursuit for oil has slowed down think twice, both these candidates are puppets.



    Trump is a decent man. Not without sin like WE ALL ARE SINNERS.

    The fact is most people voting for Hillary know she is corrupt and a liar, and they don’t care. It’s the “human ENTITLEMENT movement” of LGBT rights and women’s rights wanting to REDEFINE MARRIAGE, and even male and female! They want to change the USA to meet their lifestyle. Hillary and the movement supports BABY MURDER Abortion up to 9 months! She talks about guns killing kids, but supports baby murder. Where are the babies rights? Who would these murdered babies vote for? This movement wants everything FREE. Free college, free meals, free housing, free healthcare etc. The FREE ENTITLEMENT movement. Anyone voting for corrupt lying Hillary is “USING” her to reach their agenda. We people who have moral values have NO rights anymore, as the LGBT community and laws prevent us from standing for our rights in business and church, while they sue us! The LGBT rights are ABOVE our rights!

  7. The Clinton foundation is under heavy investigation for FRAUD of donations. They already have documented facts to convict them. It’s happening soon… Those voting for her will pay the price if CORRUPT Hillary wins. You will see what this nation turns into…

    • In February, FBI agents presented their findings to senior FBI officials and prosecutors in the Justice Department’s public integrity section, sources said. But the prosecutors and senior FBI officials agreed that there was no clear evidence of wrongdoing and that a criminal case tied to the Clinton Foundation could not be made, according to the sources.

      “It was not impressive,” one source said of the February presentation. “It was not something that [prosecutors] felt they could authorize additional steps for. They were not impressed with the presentation or the evidence — if you could even call it evidence to that point.”


  8. Dear Heavenly Father, I pray today that American’s would go out and vote to keep you as their Lord and Savior. I pray that every heart in this nation repents and asks forgiveness for the evil we’ve sat back and allowed to infiltrate our once great nation that was indeed blessed solely by you. I pray that your will be done this election and that we would get a leader into the highest office of this land that will support the American worker, remove the sin filled sickness of this one world new order globalist movement bent on destroying all that is good and all that is American in the way of our laws and constitution. I pray Jesus that you are put first in the hearts of all that go out and vote today. I pray that you would be glorified by this election by We the People taking a stand finally against the hypocrisy, the vile filth, the sinfulness of our corrupt current leaders, and show the world that we are your light on the hill and we are indeed not all fallen into the mire of this nations sin. I pray that we as a nation repent and see the errors of not putting you first but relegating you to just a few moments on any given Sunday if even that. I pray that we stop the watershed of iniquity that has run over board in this nation. I pray your will be done. Though I want to see this nation come back to you fully it is your will God that will be done. You will put in power whom you will and take down whom you will. Please God hear the cry of your people and I will respect and take the choice you make today for this nation. Please God hear our prayers and forgive me and those that know it is all about you. Amen.

      • Nothing can be more stypefying than the arrogance of your own statement. You have no way of knowing – no evidence at all – of the validity of your statement which stems from a combination of bitter ignorance and hatred.

  9. You guys are nitwits. Your vote doesn’t matter or count, that’s just a “country wide circle jerk”. You are 1 in 132 million, do you think that even matters? I don’t even waste my time w/ it. In fact it costs you more to vote since jury pools are generated off of voter registration lists. That’s why I don’t even register. I haven’t been called for a jury in 16 years. LOL (Insert last laugh here). Yeah, yeah, someone died for my right to vote. Blah blah woof woof. I guess I’d be “OK” with it if I didn’t have to pay for it and I’m not about to do that baby!