For the last three months of the 2020 Presidential race, all we heard from Trump was that he could only lose if the election was ‘stolen’ from him. Nothing about the pandemic, nothing about how to re-set the economy, nothing about nothing except election ‘fraud.’
Now on the eve of his second impeachment trial, when he’s going to be charged with inciting a riot by claiming that only direct, physical violence would save him from defeat, we finally get a clear picture of how and why Trump lost the 2020 campaign. You can find this information in a post-election report put together by his chief pollster, Tony Fabrizio, and available for download right here.
First and most important is the fact that Trump’s 2016 victory margin was so slim that he went into 2020, pandemic or no pandemic, in a vulnerable campaign environment which was only made worse by the spread of Covid-19. Let’s remember that Trump became President because he flipped 3 states – Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin – by 1/10th of one percent of the total votes cast in those three state.
The challenge for Trump in 2020 had nothing to do with ramping up turnout and votes in reliably red states. The issue was whether he could maintain or increase his incredibly thin margin in those crucial, battleground states. According to Fabrizio, he not only didn’t increase his support where he needed to increase votes most of all; he actually lost votes in those states from the voters who were considered to be his best friends.
The report is based on a comparison of voting numbers and demographics in states that Trump flipped in 2016 and retained in 2020 (TX, IA, OH, NC, FL) versus states that he flipped in 2016 but then lost to Biden this time around (AZ, WI, MI, PA, GA).
The report refers to the former group as ‘held states’ in 2020, the latter group as ‘flipped states’ and this is what it says: “Despite turnout for both state groups being MORE GOP in 2020 than 2016, POTUS lost ground in both groups largely due to a massive swing against POTUS among Indies in both state groups and more GOP ‘leakage’ in “Flipped” states.”
Wow! This analysis isn’t ‘fake news.’ It was put together by Trump’s own campaign team, or at least members of the team who, unlike some other members, Flynn, Giuliani, et. al.) weren’t allegedly working for Trump but basically just feathering their own nests.
One of the books about the Trump Presidency which remains to be written is how many of his key advisers and family members spent most of their time making deals for themselves. One of our good friends, Sam Popkin, has a book in this vein being published in May.
How do you explain the fact that in both ‘held’ and ‘flipped’ battleground states, that Trump lost ground with what had been his most solid supporters, i.e., White voters? Here’s what the report found: “Racially, POTUS suffered his greatest erosion with White voters, particularly White Men in both state groups.”
Another big takeaway was that 1 in 6 voters in 2020 didn’t vote in 2016, but these ‘new’ voters went for Biden in all the battleground states, even though the Trump campaign kept saying that pre-election polls were meaningless because their guy would benefit from a last-minute surge. Some surge.
You might be tempted to buy the idea that the Democrats rigged voting in states like Georgia, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin – states which went from red to blue in 2020 – were it not for the fact that what Fabrizio and his team found to be vote profiles in the states that flipped back to Biden was also what appeared in the battleground states which returned a majority or plurality to Trump. In other words, this report puts the vote ‘fraud’ argument to bed. Unless you want to pretend otherwise.
It’s really great that Trump’s staunchest supporters are the crazy lady from Georgia, Marjorie Taylor Greene, and the certified idiot from Florida, Matt Gaetz. The picture above is Gaetz speaking to a ‘huge’ rally in front of the Colorado State House.
Want to help me get rid of the GOP forever? Let’s encourage those two schmucks to run for President and Vice President in 2024.