Millions of Americans cast their ballots on November 8, 2016, with the positive expectation that the next president will be Hillary Clinton. For much of the campaign, she had kept a fairly stable lead in polls, and there was nothing to indicate an upset. Yet Donald Trump delivered a victory speech off the cuff by the end of the night, because his team had written just one concession. It was not until the next day that Hillary Clinton emerged, because her team had only planned an acceptance speech. Mr Trump had won due to a stunning collection of circumstances and a strange system of elections.
Ms Clinton had secured almost another three million votes. Yet, thanks to a lead of just tens of thousands of votes in three key states, Mr Trump had gotten over the top. Four years later and polls now show President Trump losing to Democratic candidate Joe Biden in a landslide. Yet no one in the United States believes that.
In the past few years, the polling industry has been dealt a significant blow with allegations that they were incorrect with the Brexit vote, the 2016 U.S. election, and the Australian election last year. Yet polls can only be so accurate, as weather forecasting. Scientific approaches are, after all, used to seek to predict the future. Polling at last year’s Australian election was surprisingly reliable, showing Bill Shorten 51-49 to lead Scott Morrison. The lead looked strong enough to make Sportsbet payout early on for Labor-backing punters. And Morrison ended up winning by two per cent on election day.
The two-point gap on the polling industry as a whole was seen as a black mark but predicting the future can never be ideal. Especially because those people who move close elections are the ones who make up their minds when we stand in the queue to vote. This is what happened last year in Australia, and 2016 in America. In the Trump-Clinton race, the polls weren’t even that far away. It’s just that rising thought a three-point margin would mean Ms Clinton’s winning. This time around no-one is so comfortable.
Unless this time the polls are off by as much as 2016, Joe Biden is poised for the largest landslide victory in a decade. Mr Trump has trailed by double-digits in national polls in recent weeks. And in this week’s statewide polls, Mr Trump is behind not only in swing states like Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Michigan, but also in Louisiana, Georgia, and Arizona’s republican base states.
The polling encouraged Mr Biden to start advertising in Texas, making him the first Democratic candidate since Bill Clinton in 1992 to make a move in the huge State. Mr Trump has to compete on a lot of fronts as a result. When he wins every state he won last time but defeats Texas, then Mr Biden becomes president. Much of Mr Biden’s criticism of the Republican Party derives from his campaign strategy. Mr Biden has been scarcely seen in public since the start of the pandemic.
Americans Admire Political Figure
Instead, he has been largely removed from his home, making videos and doing TV interviews. For months, he hasn’t given a press conference. Yet for a very simple reason, Mr Biden has shown no desire to change his policy-it works. Mr Biden has a long-running history of engaging in gaffes on the campaign trail, losing his train of thought when talking or putting his foot in his mouth during conversations.
But living in his basement does suit him politically well. Many Americans admire a political figure who knows what is responsible for the coronavirus pandemic. No president in recent history has attracted a group of followers as devoted as Donald Trump. They ‘re wearing red caps bearing his slogan “Make America Great Again.” They pack his rallies out, and they cheer his name. They ‘re tossing out Republicans who don’t trust him fully.
And Mr Trump has based his campaign on issues that are important to them: defending Confederate monuments, encouraging them not to wear masks in public, endorsing police against protesters changing the criminal justice system. Yet, as polling points out, this is not a winning tactic. The Americans want Confederate statues to be taken down. We want the use of masks and they want reform of the criminal justice system. It’s not the base voters who gave Mr Trump his 2016 election victory. Instead, it was the electorate who distrusted him, but even more, hated Ms Clinton.
Mr Trump won in a landslide of voters who previously hated both candidates. Yet this time around, the exact opposite is real. The latter is winning easily among people who don’t like either Mr Trump or Mr Biden. Swing voters see Joe Biden as being old, uninspiring and moderate. Swing voters found Hillary Clinton to be unethical, radical and cruel. The Trump campaign makes every attempt to villainize Mr Biden. But it is hard to make anyone so bland a polarizing figure. And after four years of angry tweets, political instability, protests, recession and pandemic. The electorate seems to want someone in control to boring.