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Going Red or Blue in Michigan in 2020?

Absentee ballots appear to be at a record level this year in Michigan, and with that, could tilt Michigan Democratic, says political scientist Matt Grossmann, director of Michigan State University's Institute for Public Party and Social Research.

Still, the state's political landscape looks uneven, Grossmann said. Absentee voting for any reason is in its first year in Michigan, where voters have had to specify a reason why they couldn't vote in person. Enthusiasm for absentee ballots, in 2016 and 2018, failed to materialize, he noted.

Another way to show your enthusiasm for voting: play Election Madness, a new pick-em game similar to basketball's March Madness created by MSU political scientist Eric Juenge. Learn more on the podcast, but get your picks in by Monday, Oct. 26 to have a winning chance. Grossmann and IPPSR technical manager Jes Sprague helped build the game.

The economy is still an election-year factor, MSU economist Charles Ballard projected in the podcast. A better economy may have yet to materials until the U.S. gains on the pandemic Coronavirus, he forecast.

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On the MSU campus, IPPSR specializes in policy education, leadership training and survey research in MSU's College of Social Science. We are the home of the Michigan Political Leadership Program, the Office for Survey Research, State of the State Survey, Legislative Leadership Program, Rosenthal Legislative Internship Program, more than 60 affiliate faculty members, student policy fellows and major research databases on topics of interest to academic researchers, legislators, policy makers, elected leaders and journalists around the world.

IPPSR thanks MSU's University Communications, MSU Director of Public Relations Jennifer Davis, Producer Russ White of MSU Advancement Marketing and Communications, and all those who support the efforts necessary to make this production possible.