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Democrats and the polling industry have some soul-searching to do: Political Correspondent

Jon Ward, Yahoo News Senior Political Correspondent joins the Yahoo Finance Live panel to discuss the latest on the 2020 presidential election results.

Video Transcript

ZACK GUZMAN: More clarity is coming in as we continue to get these votes trickling in in some important key battleground states we've been watching since late, late into last night and early into this morning. But overall, the markets continue to grow here as we get that clarity. Investors clearly enjoying perhaps a growing sense of where this election is going to go.

And for the latest on that count, I want to get to Jon Ward. He's Yahoo News Senior Political Correspondent, and he joins us now. And, Jon, we were just discussing a moment ago the latest update out of Wisconsin there coming from the election commissioner saying that all the votes in that state had been counted and that Joe Biden was slated to win that state by about 20,000 votes. And some people might say that's a close margin. What about a recount there? But that's about the same margin that President Trump won the state back in 2016. So how are you seeing that play out here as we look at the race to 270?

JON WARD: Well, I think the person to look for or to look to in Wisconsin is the former governor who's a Republican, Scott Walker. He made a comment, not too long ago basically saying that Wisconsin has a history of having accurate elections. There have been multiple recounts in previous years, and the change in vote totals have been in the hundreds of votes. And so Walker's point is basically that a 20,000-vote lead for Biden there is probably way too much for Trump to overcome.

I don't think we have official calls on Wisconsin yet, but I think we're likely to get those soon. And I think if Biden continues to lead in Michigan, which it looks like he will, we actually don't need Pennsylvania to come in to get a result. If Joe Biden hangs onto Nevada, that puts him at exactly 270 Electoral College votes, which makes the one Electoral College vote in Nebraska's second congressional district the one that will have put him over the top in some respects.

AKIKO FUJITA: Jon, you know, it's interesting to see how a number of these races have played out, but I'm wondering how you are watching for this balance of power as well. A lot of these Senate races that we were watching closely, doesn't look like the Democrats are going to regain the majority there. How big of a surprise is it? And I'm just curious how you're seeing that play out.

JON WARD: It's a big surprise, and there's this interesting dynamic that went on in the weeks leading up to the election where the polling had Democrats with very large leads in a lot of these swing states. Obviously Biden had a huge lead in the national polls, but even in the state-by-state polls, Democrats and Biden had a big lead. Democrats were very confident that they were going to retake the Senate, and that did not probably happen.

We're going to have runoffs in Georgia it looks like, at least one of them, and that may end up deciding the balance of the Senate. But no question Democrats underperformed in some very significant ways, and there's two issues here. One is polling.

You know, I spoke with Ralph Reed, a Republican operative, two weeks ago, and he basically said that pollsters in the modern era of politics are swinging blindfolded at a pinata. He looks right in some significant ways.

And then there's the issue of how Democrats did with minority voters, you know, Latino voters, African American voters. There were some inroads made among Republicans with some of these voters while Democrats ran up the margins in the suburbs among college-educated voters as well.

So there's going to be a lot to unpack here, but it's not a clean sweep for really either side. The Democrats have, I think, some soul searching to do, as does the polling industry.

ZACK GUZMAN: Yeah, and when we look at this too, I just want to make that point clear here because it's important when you think about what this map looks like because you said we might not even need to wait and see what happens in Pennsylvania, which some people were saying could take until Friday here as those votes get counted, because if Biden holds on to Wisconsin and Michigan there as well as Nevada, as you said, and Arizona-- a lot of these haven't been called officially, but if he holds onto those, that's going to be enough here.

So what's your timeline then-- because we heard from both camps. Joe Biden supposedly expected to be speaking here sometime today. What's your timeline on when this clarity might come?

JON WARD: It looks like Wisconsin is going to be clear today. It looks like Michigan will be clear by tonight, I think. And so that leaves the question of when we'll know about Nevada. There are reports from Jon Ralston who runs the "Nevada Independent" that they might not actually give us their final numbers until tomorrow morning. He's pushing for them to do it earlier. And so it might be another, you know, 18, 24 hours before we know for sure.

You know, going back to Pennsylvania, I'm hopeful that we don't have a protracted fight there because there's just a potential given everything that's happened in the previous few weeks and months for that to turn kind of ugly. And so I'm just hoping for the sake of the country that we don't have to go through that, but we'll see.

ZACK GUZMAN: All right, the latest update there from Yahoo News senior political correspondent Jon Ward. Appreciate you bringing us that.