In purple, the 127 counties thatvoted

for the winner in the past four elections

States that voted for the winner all four elections

States that swung at least once since 2000

N.H.

Nev.

Iowa

Ohio

Colo.

Va.

Ind.

N.C.

N.M.

Fla.

456 counties that consistently voted for the Democrat ...

... and 2,093 that consistently leaned Republican

Other 395 swing counties

What to watch and when

In purple, the 127

counties that

voted for the winner

in the past four elections

States that voted for the winner all four elections

456 counties that consistently

voted for the Democrat ...

States that swung at least once since 2000

... and 2,093 that consistently leaned Republican

Other 395 swing counties

Maine

Wash.

N.D.

Mont.

Vt.

Minn.

Ore.

N.H.

Sandusky

Wis.

(Fremont)

Idaho

Mass.

S.D.

Mich.

N.Y.

R.I.

Wyo.

Washoe

Conn.

Iowa

(Reno)

Pa.

N.J.

Ohio

Neb.

Nev.

Del.

Ind.

Hamilton

Md.

Colo.

Utah

Ill.

(Cincinnati)

Loudoun

(Leesburg)

W.Va.

Arapahoe

Kan.

Va.

Calif.

Mo.

(Aurora)

Ky.

N.C.

Tenn.

Okla.

Ariz.

S.C.

Wake

Ark.

(Raleigh)

THE LATE WEST

N.M.

Ala.

The West could prove quite interesting. Utah has the potential to be the biggest upset of the election.

Miss.

Ga.

Texas

La.

THE EARLY EAST

Early results from the solidly Democratic Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states are likely to outnumber the Southern Republican states, giving Clinton an edge in the electoral votes.

Fla.

Hillsborough

(Tampa)

Hawaii

What to watch and when

In purple, the 127

counties that

voted for the winner

in the past four elections

States that voted for the winner all four elections

456 counties that consistently

voted for the Democrat ...

States that swung at least once since 2000

... and 2,093 that consistently leaned Republican

Other 395 swing counties

Maine

Wash.

N.D.

Vt.

Mont.

Minn.

Ore.

N.H.

Sandusky

Wis.

(Fremont)

Idaho

Mass.

S.D.

Mich.

Wyo.

N.Y.

R.I.

Washoe

Conn.

Iowa

(Reno)

Pa.

N.J.

Ohio

Neb.

Nev.

Del.

Ind.

Hamilton

Md.

Colo.

Utah

Ill.

(Cincinnati)

Loudoun

(Leesburg)

W.Va.

Arapahoe

Mo.

Kan.

Va.

Calif.

(Aurora)

Ky.

N.C.

Tenn.

Okla.

Ariz.

S.C.

Wake

Ark.

(Raleigh)

THE LATE WEST

N.M.

The West could prove quite interesting. Utah has the potential to be the biggest upset of the election.

THE EARLY EAST

Miss.

Ala.

Ga.

Texas

Early results from the solidly Democratic Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states are likely to outnumber the Southern Republican states, giving Clinton an edge in the electoral votes.

La.

Fla.

Hillsborough

(Tampa)

Hawaii

What to watch and when

In purple, the 125

counties that

voted for the winner

in the past four elections

States that voted for the winner all four elections

457 counties that consistently

voted for the Democrat ...

States that swung at least once since 2000

... and 2,099 that consistently leaned Republican

Other 390 swing counties

Maine

Wash.

N.D.

Vt.

Mont.

Minn.

Ore.

N.H.

Wis.

Idaho

Mass.

S.D.

Mich.

N.Y.

R.I.

Wyo.

Conn.

Washoe

Iowa

(Reno)

Pa.

N.J.

Neb.

Ind.

Nev.

Del.

Ohio

Md.

Utah

Ill.

W.Va.

Colo.

Kan.

Va.

Calif.

Mo.

Ky.

N.C.

Tenn.

Okla.

Ariz.

S.C.

Ark.

N.M.

Miss.

Ala.

Ga.

Texas

La.

Hawaii

Fla.

Note: Alaska not pictured

because it has no county results.

Of the 563 counties that have ‘swung’ — favored both Democratic and Republican presidential candidates over the past four elections —most have a relatively small range, supporting each party’s candidate by only a couple percentage points.

Some swings have been more sizeable – Rockdale County, Georgia, near Atlanta, for instance, went from voting 63 percent and 61 percent for Bush in his two elections, to voting 54 percent and 58 percent for Obama. In each election, the margin of victory was in the thousands of votes. Travis County, Texas, which includes Austin, favored former governor George W. Bush in 2000 by about 15,000 votes, but favored Obama by more than 90,000 votes in 2008 and 2012.

#%

0%

Every line represents a U.S.

county, and shows the margin

of victory for the winner of each

presidential election

To the left, gray

lines represent

counties always

won by Democrats

To the right,

gray lines represent

counties always won

by Republicans

In the middle, purple

lines represent counties

that voted for

different parties

REPUBLICAN

DEMOCRAT

Every line represents a U.S. county, and shows the margin

of victory for the winner of each presidential election

#%

0%

To the left, gray

lines represent

counties always

won by Democrats

In the middle, purple

lines represent counties

that voted for

different parties

To the right,

gray lines represent

counties always won

by Republicans

DEMOCRAT

REPUBLICAN

Every line represents a U.S. county, and shows the margin of victory for the winner of each presidential election

To the left, gray

lines represent

counties always

won by Democrats

In the middle, purple

lines represent counties

that voted for

different parties

To the right,

gray lines represent

counties always won

by Republicans

#%

0%

HOVER

FOR DETAIL

DEMOCRAT

REPUBLICAN

Picking the winner

Picking the winner

Picking the winner

Some of these counties, based on their voting histories, could be early indicators of who will be victorious on Tuesday:

(NEVADA)

WASHOE CO.

state

county

+4%R

9%R

’00

’04

’08

+7%D

+4%D

’12

+50% D

0%

+50% R

For a Republican to carry Nevada, Reno and its Washoe County will have to play a role. That happened back in 2000 and 2004, when the presidential race was close on the other side of the state in populous and perennially Democratic Clark County (Las Vegas). Over the past four presidential contests, Washoe County was Nevada’s only one to pick a winner every time, although Barack Obama didn’t need its help thanks to giant Clark County wins.

(OHIO)

HAMILTON CO.

state

county

With a population over 800,000, Hamilton County is Ohio’s third-largest, and has helped swing the state to the winning side in presidential elections. There’s a near balance in Ohio that enables it to swing between parties. On one side are 50 rural and small-town counties that despite their size consistently deliver Republican margins of up to 200,000 votes. On the other side are Hamilton and other counties with big cities and suburbs that delivered even margins for Obama.

LOUDOUN CO.

(VIRGINIA)

state

county

+8%R

+15%R

’00

’04

’08

+3%D

+5%D

’12

+50% D

0%

+50% R

Loudoun County is part of a 2.5 million-population region in Northern Virginia that can deliver massive wins. In the past four presidential elections, Loudoun has picked all winners. Back in 2000, Loudoun went Republican by 11,500 votes, while the entire region did so by less than 5,000. Eight years later, Obama won Loudoun, and the region delivered Obama a 226,000-vote win that almost equaled his win statewide.

(FLORIDA)

HILLSBOROUGH CO.

state

county

+0%D

+3%R

’00

’04

’08

+1%D

+7%D

’12

+50% D

0%

+50% R

Florida is one of the biggest battleground prizes, and several large counties have flipped between the parties since 2000. But Hillsborough County is the only one in Florida that has picked all presidential winners. It gave Bush margins of 11,000 and 31,000 votes, but then swung to Obama by 10,000 and 36,000 votes. It’s a diverse county, with whites having a small majority, Hispanics 27 percent and blacks 18 percent.

ARAPAHOE CO.

(COLORADO)

county

state

+8%R

+8%R

’00

’04

’08

+5%D

+8%D

’12

+50% D

0%

+50% R

Until Colorado flipped and voted for Obama in 2008 and 2012, it had a tradition of favoring Republican presidential candidates that stretched almost unbroken back to the 1960s. Arapahoe County, which contains suburbs of Denver, and the state’s other large counties drove the change. After favoring George W. Bush in 2000 and 2004 by as much as 15,000 votes, Obama won by margins of more than 20,000 votes in 2008 and 2012.

Washoe Co.

For a Republican to carry Nevada, Reno and its Washoe County will have to play a role. That happened back in 2000 and 2004, when the presidential race was close on the other side of the state in populous and perennially Democratic Clark County (Las Vegas). Over the past four presidential contests, Washoe County was Nevada’s only one to pick a winner every time, although Barack Obama didn’t need its help thanks to giant Clark County wins.

NEVADA

state

county

+4%R

+9%R

’00

’04

’08

+7%D

+4%D

’12

+50% D

0%

+50% R

With a population over 800,000, Hamilton County is Ohio’s third-largest, and has helped swing the state to the winning side in presidential elections. There’s a near balance in Ohio that enables it to swing between parties. On one side are 50 rural and small-town counties that despite their size consistently deliver Republican margins of up to 200,000 votes. On the other side are Hamilton and other counties with big cities and suburbs that delivered even margins for Obama.

Hamilton Co.

OHIO

state

county

Loudoun Co.

Loudoun County is part of a 2.5 million-population region in Northern Virginia that can deliver massive wins. In the past four presidential elections, Loudoun has picked all winners. Back in 2000, Loudoun went Republican by 11,500 votes, while the entire region did so by less than 5,000. Eight years later, Obama won Loudoun, and the region delivered Obama a 226,000-vote win that almost equaled his win statewide.

VIRGINIA

state

county

+8%R

+15%R

’00

’04

’08

+3%D

+5%D

’12

+50% D

0%

+50% R

Florida is one of the biggest battleground prizes, and several large counties have flipped between the parties since 2000. But Hillsborough County is the only one in Florida that has picked all presidential winners. It gave Bush margins of 11,000 and 31,000 votes, but then swung to Obama by 10,000 and 36,000 votes. It’s a diverse county, with whites having a small majority, Hispanics 27 percent and blacks 18 percent.

Hillsborough Co.

FLORIDA

state

county

+0%D

+3%R

’00

’04

’08

+1%D

+7%D

’12

+50% D

0%

+50% R

Arapahoe Co.

Until Colorado flipped and voted for Obama in 2008 and 2012, it had a tradition of favoring Republican presidential candidates that stretched almost unbroken back to the 1960s. Arapahoe County, which contains suburbs of Denver, and the state’s other large counties drove the change. After favoring George W. Bush in 2000 and 2004 by as much as 15,000 votes, Obama won by margins of more than 20,000 votes in 2008 and 2012.

COLORADO

county

state

+8%R

+8%R

’00

’04

’08

+5%D

+8%D

’12

+50% D

0%

+50% R

Washoe Co.

For a Republican to carry Nevada, Reno and its Washoe County will have to play a role. That happened back in 2000 and 2004, when the presidential race was close on the other side of the state in populous and perennially Democratic Clark County (Las Vegas). Over the past four presidential contests, Washoe County was Nevada’s only one to pick a winner every time, although Barack Obama didn’t need its help thanks to giant Clark County wins.

NEVADA

state

county

+4%R

+9%R

’00

’04

’08

+7%D

+4%D

’12

+50% D

0%

+50% R

Hamilton Co.

With a population over 800,000, Hamilton County is Ohio’s third-largest, and has helped swing the state to the winning side in presidential elections. There’s a near balance in Ohio that enables it to swing between parties. On one side are 50 rural and small-town counties that despite their size consistently deliver Republican margins of up to 200,000 votes. On the other side are Hamilton and other counties with big cities and suburbs that delivered even margins for Obama.

OHIO

state

county

Loudoun Co.

Loudoun County is part of a 2.5 million-population region in Northern Virginia that can deliver massive wins. In the past four presidential elections, Loudoun has picked all winners. Back in 2000, Loudoun went Republican by 11,500 votes, while the entire region did so by less than 5,000. Eight years later, Obama won Loudoun, and the region delivered Obama a 226,000-vote win that almost equaled his win statewide.

VIRGINIA

state

county

+8%R

+15R

’00

’04

’08

+3%D

+5%D

’12

+50% D

0%

+50% R

Hillsborough Co.

Florida is one of the biggest battleground prizes, and several large counties have flipped between the parties since 2000. But Hillsborough County is the only one in Florida that has picked all presidential winners. It gave Bush margins of 11,000 and 31,000 votes, but then swung to Obama by 10,000 and 36,000 votes. It’s a diverse county, with whites having a small majority, Hispanics 27 percent and blacks 18 percent.

FLORIDA

state

county

+0%D

+3%R

’00

’04

’08

+1%D

+7%D

’12

+50% D

0%

+50% R

Arapahoe Co.

Until Colorado flipped and voted for Obama in 2008 and 2012, it had a tradition of favoring Republican presidential candidates that stretched almost unbroken back to the 1960s. Arapahoe County, which contains suburbs of Denver, and the state’s other large counties drove the change. After favoring George W. Bush in 2000 and 2004 by as much as 15,000 votes, Obama won by margins of more than 20,000 votes in 2008 and 2012.

COLORADO

county

state

+8%R

+8%R

’00

’04

’08

+5%D

+8%D

’12

+50% D

0%

+50% R

A look at state patterns

A look at state patterns

A look at state patterns

ALAZARCACOCTDEDCFLGAHIIDILINIAKSKYLAMEMDMAMIMNMSMOMTNENVNHNJNMNYNCNDOHOKORPARISCSDTNTXUTVTVAWAWVWIWYAK

But looking more broadly, these swings toward the winner happen in numerous counties all across the country, both among those that consistently support one party and those that swing.

Here are the margins of victory in the 456 counties that consistently voted for the Democrat …

… and 2,093 that consistently leaned Republican.

The remaining 563 counties have switched between Democratic and Republican over the last four elections.

Although 8 in 10 of these counties consistently leaned toward one party, their margin of victory still varied. For an especially popular Democratic candidate like Barack Obama in 2008, for instance, solid blue counties voted even more strongly Democratic, and solid red counties voted more moderately in favor of the Republican.

The result: Over his two elections, Bush got 2.6 million more votes than his opponents among these counties, but between 2008 and 2012, they gave Obama 2.8 million more votes than McCain and Romney.

VOTED DEMOCRATIC SINCE 2000

VOTED REPUBLICAN SINCE 2000

VOTED DEMOCRATIC SINCE 2000

VOTED REPUBLICAN SINCE 2000

VOTED DEMOCRATIC SINCE 2000

VOTED REPUBLICAN SINCE 2000

Unsurprisingly, solidly Democratic counties tend to be more urban and less white than their Republican counterparts.

Swing counties, however, show a more interesting range. Those that voted Republican in 2012 tend to be whiter, poorer and less educated than solidly right-leaning ones. And the swing counties that supported Obama in 2012 include some of the richest and most-educated counties in the nation.

[ Who different groups are supporting]

But when these counties swing, it’s not always toward the winner. Since 2000, 41 counties have consistently voted for the loser, primarily along the Appalachians and in the South. Consistently picking the winner are 127 largely suburban counties, scattered throughout the country.

127 COUNTIES VOTED

THE WINNER SINCE 2000

41 COUNTIES VOTED

THE LOSER SINCE 2000

127 COUNTIES VOTED

THE WINNER SINCE 2000

41 COUNTIES VOTED

THE LOSER SINCE 2000

127 COUNTIES VOTED THE WINNER SINCE 2000

41 COUNTIES VOTED THE LOSER SINCE 2000

NH

NH

WA

WA

VT

VT

ME

ME

MT

MT

ND

ND

OR

OR

MN

MN

MA

MA

ID

ID

WI

WI

NY

SD

SD

NY

RI

RI

WY

WY

MI

MI

CT

CT

PA

PA

IA

IA

NJ

NJ

NE

NE

NV

NV

OH

OH

IN

IN

IL

IL

DE

DE

UT

UT

CO

CO

WV

WV

CA

CA

VA

VA

MD

MD

KS

KS

MO

MO

KY

KY

DC

DC

NC

NC

TN

TN

OK

OK

AZ

AZ

AR

AR

NM

NM

SC

SC

AL

GA

AL

GA

MS

MS

LA

LA

TX

TX

FL

FL

It’s important to note, though, that these counties don’t carry the same political significance as swing states. Though an extra vote in New York won’t help a Democrat clinch Ohio’s electoral votes, an extra vote in the blue Miami-Dade County, Florida, will counteract a red vote from elsewhere in the state. So politicians certainly don’t — and shouldn’t — focus the brunt of their efforts on just these counties, as they tend to in swing states.

[ Yes, Donald Trump can win. Here are 4 maps that prove it]

But the lack of swing counties does give us a better idea of the political geography of the country. Swing states are swing states not because their liberal residents live alongside conservative neighbors. Rather, some of these states just happen to strike a balance between their solidly left- and right-leaning areas, though some do have large pockets of swing voters. In North Carolina, which has been a contentious swing state for many election cycles, four of the largest cities — Raleigh, Charlotte, Greensboro and Winston-Salem — have all swung over the past four elections.

And with swing counties often picking the winner, their results could be a good indicator of Tuesday’s outcome. But in the end, it’s all up to the swing states: Florida, Ohio, Iowa, Nevada and North Carolina, as well as the typically right-leaning Arizona and Georgia.

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