In an election based upon the popular vote, Trump would have won in a landslide; Here’s why!
November 16th, 2016 • iizthatiiz
If the presidential election was determined by the popular vote, Donald Trump still would have won this election.
Successful presidential candidates must run their campaigns based upon the rules in place. In this country, that means winning the electoral college. Trump’s campaign had one goal. Winning the general election.
Trump competed vigorously for the electoral votes in battleground states. He tirelessly pursued these voters with massive campaign rallies in these swing states, hop-scotching across the country holding three to four rallies daily for many months. He energized the disaffected voters in these states, persuading them that their votes counted.
Energize and persuade them he did. Trump’s campaign strategy turned blue states red. Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. All states that Mitt Romney lost in 2012. Additionally, Trump held onto every single state that Mitt Romney won. In total, Trump took 111 electoral votes away from the Democrats, winning the electoral college with a significant 306-232 margin of victory.
When the Trump campaign repeatedly insisted that they had multiple paths to victory, they weren’t kidding. They could have lost two of the six states that were flipped and still emerged victorious. Trump also competed for Nevada, New Hampshire, and Virginia .. providing additional potential paths.
If the presidential election were determined by the popular vote, we would have seen a very different campaign strategy from Donald Trump.
The campaign discarded high population states such as California, Illinois, New Jersey, and New York. Depressed Republican voters in these heavily blue states have little incentive to turn out for a presidential election. These voters are well aware that in presidential politics, their vote does not count. Trump did no general election campaigning in the deeply held Democratic states, despite their significant voter populations.
In a sense, California, Illinois, New Jersey, and New York are all ‘rust belt’ states. Each have seen their manufacturing base decimated. Workers in these states too have seen their jobs exported overseas. They are also among America’s forgotten families.
If these voters in deeply Democratic states were allowed to believe that their votes mattered in an election based upon the popular vote, they would have turned out by the millions.
The current political reality does not allow Republican presidential candidates to compete for votes in these states. If it did, we would have seen Donald Trump holding the same massive rallies in California, Illinois, New Jersey, and New York, as he did in the battleground states. Their working class voters would have been motivated and energized, abandoning their Democratic allegiances and voting in similarly increased numbers as we saw in Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and so on.
A Trump campaign based upon a popular vote strategy would have a produced a landslide result for the populist candidate. Democrats should thank their lucky stars that it wasn’t.