I have three reasons for thinking that conservatives will turn out at the polls and support Trump’s agenda this Fall, despite that alleged “Blue Wave.”
The doom and gloomers, including the relentless NeverTrumpers, are saying that there’s a good chance that the Democrats will retake the House, because who doesn’t want to see Nancy Pelosi with the Speaker’s gavel in hand once again. We also have to deal with the reality that, while growing numbers of Americans recognize that the media is deranged, hysterical, and dishonest, news coverage that tilts 90% against Trump (trumpeting conspiracy theories while burying actual, pro-Trump news), will have a subliminal effect on voters.
Because I’m often a doom and gloomer, you’d think that I’d be wringing my hands now and crying out “Woe is me; woe is America.” For once, though, I’m a bit optimistic. I suspect that with Trump, even more than with Dubya, we’re in a world in which the “shy Tory factor” is very pronounced. Here are three reasons why I think that:
Reason #1: I was listening to a Dan Bongino podcast (which I highly recommend), and he told a story about his certainty that Trump would win in November 2016. According to Bongino, he figured out what was going on when he was running for a House seat in Florida (which he lost, something that was bad for Florida, but probably good for everyone else because, as I said, I highly recommend his podcast).
As Bongino explains it, when you’re canvasing, your campaign manager will give you a list of likely voters so that you can target them with door-to-door visits. It would be nice, of course, if the candidate could knock on every door, but knocking on the doors of people who are disinterested or die-hard members of the opposing party is just a waste of time.
So, how does a campaign manager figure out who a “likely voter” is? It’s a person who voted in past elections. Past votes, after all, are reasonable predictors for future votes.
What Bongino noticed, though, was that as he went from the house of one “likely Republican voter” to another, he was bypassing myriad houses that had “Trump for President” signs in front of them. Finally, curiosity got the best of him, and he knocked on a few doors, introduced himself, and asked about those Trump signs.
Bongino discovered that these signs festooned the homes of people who were not likely voters because they’d never voted before. For that reason, they weren’t showing up in the polls and they weren’t showing up in campaign algorithms. Nevertheless, they were so excited by Trump’s candidacy that they finally decided it was time to vote.
I suspect that Bongino’s 2016 experience continues to hold in 2018: There are lots of invisible Trump supporters, which leads me to Reasons #2 and #3 for my out-of-character optimism. [Read more…]