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To me, the remarkable aspect of this poll is not that Biden is leading. It’s that it shows 7% of the electorate is undecided. Really? Undecided? This late in the game? And with these two politicians? One who has been fed into our consciousness in every aspect of our lives over the past five years and is currently the president and the other who was vice president and has been in the public sphere for nearly five decades? Who in the hell are this 7% who can’t make up their minds?
And then it hit me: They aren’t undecided, they lean Trump, but they are waiting to make that final commitment. Something is stopping them. Something relatively intangible. It’s the “tone” thing. They are down with his policies and achievements, but they just don’t like the guy’s attitude. They prefer the “presidential” thing. – Larry O’Connor
O’Connor’s conclusion is that through his performance at the third debate Trump gave that class of undecided what they needed to vote for him. He was presidential enough. Read the whole thing.
There are other straws in the wind indicating a Trump victory. Not just a Trump victory, but a substantial Trump victory. These are factors based on hard numbers.
The Gallup poll that showed Biden up by 12 not only oversampled Democrats, but had a curious result among Republicans polled: only 72% said they were voting for Trump. The last time an incumbent Republican President got less than 80% of Republicans voting for him was in 1992 – and H. Ross Perot was running against George H.W. Bush, siphoning off nearly 20% of the Republicans. Where is this year’s Perot?
Trump got 94 percent of the Presidential votes cast in the primaries this year. Which means for the Gallup numbers to be credible one out of five Republicans that cast a vote for Trump in the primaries has changed their minds and will vote for Biden in the general election. Does that sound credible?
Trump also got more votes cast for him during the primary season than did Biden. The numbers of voters that turned out to vote for Trump in the primary broke records. Normally when an incumbent President is running in a largely uncontested Presidential primary that candidate gets fewer votes than he did during the primary season in which he was first nominated to run for President. Instead, Trump received significantly more.
How much more? He matched the total number of primary votes cast for Biden and exceeded them by over 30%. No incumbent President who received more primary votes than his November election ever lost a Presidential election.
But wait! There’s more!
Trump’s approval among Black, Latino, and Asian voters is significantly higher than it was four years ago. (I suspect the gain in Asians, which is small, is largely anchored in the Vietnamese community, who have become wildly enthusiastic about Trump. When I visited Vietnam two years ago everyone there liked Trump.) A Biden victory requires over 90% of Blacks and Hispanics to vote for Biden. Any erosion in minority support will prove fatal to Biden’s chances.
Additionally, Trump has a 52% approval rating and 56% of the public believes they are better off than they were four years ago. No incumbent President lost with approval ratings above 50% and over half of the country believing they are better off than four years ago (and several have won reelection with approval ratings below 50%).
Finally, there is the fact that Trump won four years ago, and the coalition that put him over the top is still behind him. Can you name anyone you know personally who voted Trump four years ago who plans on voting for Biden this year? I am not talking about long-time Republicans who did not vote for him in 2016 – the Kasichs, Flakes, and Romneys of the party. I mean anyone who went into the voting booth in 2016 and marked the ballot for Trump? Can you name one? Me neither.
But what about vote fraud? Ballot box stuffing? Won’t that matter? Only if it is close. Bogus ballots can only shift an election by a maximum of 1%. It is most effective when the difference is razor-thin, such as the election that got Al Franken his Senate seat. Check all the California elections won by ballot harvesting last time. In all of them, the difference between victor and loser was less than one percent.
I don’t think it will be that close. And with Mr. Biden saying he is going to close down the oil industry and make us dependent on foreign kleptocracies for our energy, the trend towards Trump will only increase.
I am not predicting a Reagan landslide, but I do think it will be a sold Trump victory, perhaps similar to “W’s” re-election.Published in