We dissect the tectonic forces (and one mega wild card) that will determine the election.
MLLG Analysis of the 2020 Election By: George Noga - February 9, 2020
This is our first 2020 election report; political analysis is a popular feature with readers because we have been been incredibly prescient and perspicuous in the past including Trump’s surprise 2016 victory. New readers should go to www.mllg.us to see my bio and political bona fides. This post addresses the tectonic forces that will determine the winner – beginning with those favoring Trump.
African-American Vote: I was among the very first to discern the shift in black voting patterns; read my blogs of 2/12/17 and 6/2/19. This mega wild card has the potential to radically transform this election and, with it, American politics. Polls have Trump’s approval rating among blacks in the mid-thirty percent range; this is astounding.
In 2016 Trump got 8% of the black vote; if he increases this to just 12% it makes it hard for Dems to win certain key states; 16% makes victory all but certain while 20% or more is a landslide. In addition to winning a higher share of the black vote, Trump benefits if, as in 2016, many blacks don’t vote. Moreover, the blexit movement (black exodus from Democratic Party) also includes Latinos and other minorities. MLLG fearlessly forecasts Trump will substantially increase his share of the black vote!
UK/Other Elections: An immutable principle is that real people voting in real elections count more than polls and pundits – even in elections held in other countries. Recent elections in Germany, France, Canada and Australia all have resulted in defeats for liberals. Bill Clinton, a savvy politician, foresaw Hillary’s loss after the original 2016 Brexit vote. The December UK election casts a large shadow, as parallels between the UK Labour Party and the US Democratic Party are incandescently apparent.
The revolt of the working class that rocked the UK affects us. If disaffected Americans in the Rust Belt turn out in force, Trump wins. People everywhere have similar desires. Voters in northern England are no different than voters in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin; they want economic security but also crave cultural security. Democrats in the US could end up losing a culture war they didn’t know they were fighting.
The Economy: Economics trumps all else. Every econometric model shows Trump winning handily given a strong economy. Voters always reward a politician who makes them better off. The economy in 2020 is as good as it gets and the bonanza is broadly shared, Democrat protestations notwithstanding. Even if the economy weakens, it will remain strong enough in November to provide Trump a powerful tailwind.
Incumbency: In the past 127 years, only two elected presidents lost head-to-head elections. Americans always vote for the fool they know over the devil they don’t.
Other Forces Favoring Trump: We are at peace, at least relatively. In 2016 Trump was outspent over two to one; this time he is flush with cash. His rallies routinely draw tens of thousands of enthusiastic supporters, crowds Dems can only dream about. Every independent legal betting site has Trump a heavy favorite. His opposition appears weak, woke, discombobulated and out of touch with working Americans.
Forces Favoring the Democrats
Suburban Women: This cohort deserted Trump en mass in the 2018 midterm election. If they do so again in 2020, this will provide a huge boost for the Democrats.
Trump Personna: Many voters have developed an aversion to Trump’s personal style including his tweets, braggadocio and insensitivity. It is an open question as to the extent this personal animus will prevail over the positive forces noted supra.
The forces favoring Trump clearly overwhelm those favoring the Democrats, but eight months is many eternities in politics and anything can (and will) happen between now and November. The tectonic forces identified herein are not ephemeral or transitory. Nonetheless, it is wise to bear in mind that Carter led Reagan well into October and that Dukakis once led Bush by nearly 20 points. We will continue our inimitable analysis of the 2020 election as the year progresses. Stay tuned.