US Elections 2016: Battleground States

Research Paper

Write an 7-10 page (excluding references and any tables or graphs) paper examining the outlook for the 2016 U.S. presidential election in one of the following potential battleground states: Florida, Colorado, Georgia, Arizona, North Carolina, Ohio, Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania or Virginia. Your paper should cover the following topics:

1. The results of recent elections in the state including the 2008 and 2012 presidential elections.
2. Demographic, economic and political trends in the state that could affect the 2016 election.
3. Major political regions of the state.
4. The effects of the presidential candidates and their campaigns.
5. Your prediction of the outcome of the general election.

Information sources:

Local newspapers and/or the major daily newspaper for the state. Use LexisNexis to search for newspaper articles on the presidential election: In addition, almost all major daily newspapers now have their own web sites.

The Almanac of American Politics 2014 and/or Politics in America include political and demographic profiles of every state. Both should be available in the reference room of the library. The Almanac is also available online at

Online information sources. These are almost limitless, but the quality varies widely. (the National Journal Hotline and other resources) (poll results and articles on current events) (national poll results) (poll results and analyses)

Exit poll data for 2012 election. These are readily available online from a variety of sources including CNN, Fox News, the Washington Post and the New York Times.


Cite all sources using in-text references. Internet sources should be cited by web address, date published or accessed, and (where applicable) author.

Include a complete list of references at the end of the paper.

Include a cover page with your name and the title of the paper. Staple the paper together. Do not use a binder or folder.


Your paper will be graded on the basis of content, organization, clarity, and style. Edit carefully for spelling, usage, and grammar.