Pennsylvania’s Status as a Swing State and its Importance

Pennsylvania%E2%80%99s+Status+as+a+Swing+State+and+its+Importance

By Leah Miller

The 2020 Presidential Election is drawing near, and Pennsylvania is showing out to be one of the most important, if not the most important, swing state this election.

Analysts are keeping a close eye on the state’s political status, especially regarding which candidate is carrying the lead. In 2016, PA was categorized as a “perennial” swing state, which President Trump was able to narrowly snatch. PA’s history of being on the winning side gives it more reason to be coveted by either party and publicly scrutinized by the American people.

Bridget Gillespie, 24, communications major was born in Southampton, but currently resides in North Carolina. She said that her home state raises curiosity among North Carolinians as to what her political views are. She relayed that she would not be surprised which side PA ends up taking in this election, as it could go either way.

Nathaniel Rakich, an elections analyst for website FiveThirtyEight.com stated in a recent article that PA’s geography plays a role in this election. The “working-class western and northeastern” areas of PA are increasingly supporting the right, showing a demographic change in comparisons to the early 2000’s.

Gillespie stated that PA’s status as a swing “makes everyone’s vote seriously important this year.”

Nicholas Myers, 22, of Perkasie also shared Gillespie’s thoughts that voting this year is important, especially because “a lot of recent presidents that won took Pennsylvania.”

In regard to which way the election will go, Myers said, “A lot of people have already had their mind made up and agree with their candidate’s viewpoints while ignoring everything the other side has to offer.”

This led Myers to believe that swing states, specifically PA, may find their direction through independent voters, as they are unpredicted by surveying polling efforts.

With the election getting closer, civilians, celebrities, and politicians are encouraging people to vote through social media. Singer and songwriter Taylor Swift, a PA native, endorsed Joe Biden as of recent, which will ultimately help increase young voter turnout as Swift is one of the most followed and well-known celebrities out there.

Efforts to have young adults vote are always emphasized during presidential elections, as historically there is always a low record of young registered voters. People also encourage the spectating of the presidential debates that take place before the election, to help inform their vote.

Registering to vote is simple and can be done online through websites such as Vote.org and RockTheVote.org. Early voting has been conducted since Sept.14 through Oct. 27 and is encouraged, given the state of the pandemic, so that Election Day will not be overwhelmed and expose many civilians to the virus.