2020 Election Prediction

It is a Greenbean tradition — to blog predictions about the election. How long have I been doing this? Well, somewhere out there in the interwebscapesingularity is a MySpace page where I have blogged about how I predicted John McCain would lose a close one to Barack Obama and win the Presidency.

For context, click here to see 2012 where I predicted Mitt Romney would be the next President of the United States and 2016 I couldn’t have been more wrong. I didn’t see President Trump winning by 80,000 votes spread out over three significant states. Take everything that comes from this with a gigantic grain of salt. I mean, a boulder of salt. I am just having fun here.

Before I launch into predictions, some housekeeping.

  1. If you haven’t already voted, and you are legally registered to do so, please go vote. Who you vote for is irrelevant to me. Participating in our government will help you grow as a person.
  2. Pray. There is a lot of emotion and turmoil — more than I have ever seen — regarding this election. Pray that violence does not erupt and nothing will occur to jeopardize our union.
  3. Remember, I am a-political when it comes to analysis. Regardless of who wins the presidency, Jesus is King, and he is my Lord, so my loyalties are to a much higher power than crass politicians who beg for votes so they can wield temporary power in vulgar displays. I have far more important work to do than any politician. My interest is, generally, more about societal trends and trying to read where the country is.

So, that said, let’s do some analysis and prediction.

The President has a solid base — as solid a base as anyone could ever get. His followers, fans really, will crawl through glass and swim in a sea of rubbing alcohol to vote for him. The issue in analyzing things is, that base is only about 43% nationwide. With no third party candidate there it pull votes, will he be able to get to fifty percent? A good baseline example of this is my home state of Texas in 2016. The President received 52% of the vote while Clinton received 43%. Texas is a red state, and on the face of it President Trump won by a comfortable nine points. But he only got 2% above majority. Other candidates and write-ins siphoned off the difference.

How will those break this year? It is hard to tell and to be honest it could all break incredibly close like 2016 or like 2000 in Bush v. Gore. It could break in a singular direction, like 1980 when Reagan and Carter were very close going in, but all the undecideds and I mean all, broke for Reagan which lead to a landslide.

This feels like the latter to me. The national polls still have, as of the day before, Biden at 6.5% ahead and he is leading in all the key battleground states besides North Carolina, and that is a statistical tie.

Of course, none of the polls count. The only poll which matters now is the real poll of who gets the votes.

Florida — Cuban and Venezuelan Americans are breaking for the President, which is a big deal. But senior adults are breaking for Biden in large numbers. Which way will it go? I think Florida stays red, which is an Election Day must for President Trump. He can’t win without it.

North Carolina and Pennsylvania — These are close races, but I perceive these are going blue. Biden picks these up I think by five percentage points. He gets Pennsylvania because of his close ties to the region and he gets North Carolina as a protest vote.

Texas, Georgia, and Ohio — These three are statistically even for both candidates. President Trump carried all of them easily in 2016. I think one of them, I don’t really know which one, but one of them, will turn from red to blue. If I had to lay out good money on it, I would wager Texas goes blue based predominantly upon the amount of early voting, and the turnout in Harris County. Geographically Texas is red — where I live President Trump enjoys great support and he carried my county at 73% four years ago. However, Houston, San Antonio, El Paso, and much of the suburbs in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area are blue to purple, and that is where most of the people live. It’s gonna be close. Keep in mind, if they all three stayed red I would not be surprised, but at least one will flip.

Arizona — Based on the polling for the senate race in Arizona, which has Democratic candidate Mark Kelly ahead by an average of nearly 6%, I think President Trump will loose Arizona.

Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota — President Trump was able to demolish the blue wall by picking off Michigan and Wisconsin in 2016. I don’t think he will do that again. The blue wall returns, which all the polling data indicates, even if adjusted for the kind of errors the polling data showed leading into the 2016 election.

Iowa — This one is the shocker. President Trump has a slim (less than one percent edge) in the Iowa polls right now — at about 46% of the vote. If that other wobbly four percent decides its time for a change, then Iowa goes blue. I predict it does.

Oregon — Is there a state that could flip from blue to red? Is President Trump cooking up a surprise? If I had to guess one, It would be Oregon. Though traditionally blue, there is a very conservative streak to much of Oregon, and the continual rioting and civil unrest in Portland might create a backlash in the electorate. Oregon is a vote by mail state, so they should have the results early in the evening (west coast time).

Alaska — Alaska is notoriously difficult to poll, but something in my gut says their senator, Lisa Murkowski, who is Republican but tends to always be on the other side of President Trump, might know about her state more than others. So, I think there is a possibility it goes from red to blue. We will not know though, until sometime around Thanksgiving.

So, here is my 2020 Electoral Map Prediction:

So, as you see, I have Vice President Biden defeating President Trump.

Of course, I have been wrong before and will be wrong again, no doubt. However, these are simply predictions. No one knows what will happen until after Tuesday when the polls start closing. The American People get their say, and we will see.

For President Trump to win, he needs to hold everything he had last year, which means he needs to win Arizona, Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania, all states he is currently trailing by an average of five to six points. It is not impossible, but increasingly unlikely.

DONALD TRUMP, PLEASE ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS

It is a time honored practice to ask politicians questions, and then have them ignore the question and move onto their talking points. Skilled politicians can do that and make you think they answered your question and that they care. Neither Mr. Trump nor Secretary Clinton have that skillset. Whenever they are asked questions, it is painfully obvious they don’t want to answer it, don’t care about it, and would prefer to move to their pre-planned talking points.

djt_headshot_v21

If I were allowed, however, the chance to ask Mr. Trump some questions, and I would be guaranteed that he would have to answer them, these are the questions I would start with. I have posted similar questions for Hillary Clinton on a separate (click here) blog post.

  1. Many people are bothered by the fact you haven’t released your tax returns. You say it is because you are being audited. It has been reported, and you admitted in the last debate, that you have claimed exemption to refrain from paying federal income taxes. Would you tell us, then, approximately how much money or what percentage of your income, you’ve given to charity for the past five years? For the sake of clarity, your Foundation doesn’t count because it is not a recognized charity.
  2. Your slogan is “Make America Great Again.” When, in your opinion, did America stop being great? Please be as specific as possible, and what would be the first sign that greatness has returned?
  3. You have said it might be a good idea for The United States to leave NATO because some of the member nations do you not pay their fair share. If indeed you are serious about that sentiment, do you think the United States should be a “pay for play” military corporation that works for the highest bidder?
  4. Earlier in your life you were pro-choice, then when you decided to run for President you became pro-life. You’ve also said positive things about Planned Parenthood. Many pro-life people would like to cut the funding for Planned Parenthood because of its strong advocacy for abortion. How do you reconcile the two thoughts–and more to the point, would you share your real position on abortion, and maybe why you decided to become pro-life.
  5. In your early campaign rhetoric, trade and immigration were your primary policy issues, including the building of a wall on the border with Mexico and a ban on Muslim’s coming into the country. These authoritarian policies combined with your positive comments about dictators like Saddam Hussein and Vladimir Putin worry many people that you favor a “Strong Man” approach to governance. What can you say to people to reassure them that a President Trump would honor the democratic traditions of dissent, free press, free speech, and the freedom to assemble? Can you give examples of people who have disagreed with you that you didn’t threaten to silence or file a lawsuit?

Of course, I have other questions for Mr. Trump, not the least of which are about Trump University, Trump Airlines, his love affair with Playboy Magazine, his thoughts on Jesus I think are important because he has courted the Christian community so strongly, and I’d also like to know what he plans on doing with North Korea. Nevertheless, these questions are where I would start.

HILLARY CLINTON, PLEASE ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS

I recognize, even as I hack out this blog, that we can’t make the candidates answer questions. When Secretary Clinton is asked anything, she deflects to a measured speech about her long term commitment to championing the cause of working-class folks. When Mr. Trump is asked anything, he automatically begins to talk about China, ISIS, Mexico, and Bill Clinton.

But if I could make them sit down and be forced to answer the question asked, here is what I would ask Hillary Clinton. I have a similar list for Donald Trump on another (click here) blog post. 2701a6d0-clinton-4x31

  1. Secretary Clinton, you once said “What difference does it make” in regards to the investigation of the death of Ambassador Stevens and other U. S. citizens in Benghazi. I know what you meant–they are dead, and that is a tragedy, but we have to move on. I agree with that to some level, but before we do, would you share with us what exactly you learned in that process, and what could have been done differently?
  2. You tend to vilify pro-life people as being anti-women. Is there no room in your worldview for a person to be both pro-women and also champion the right of the unborn to have a chance at life? In other words, will you afford your political opponents the benefit of the doubt that they are coming at the issue with a noble purpose?
  3. Why did the famous “RESET” button with Russia fail? If you are elected president, will you try another reset, or will you move forward assuming a Putin led Russia is our enemy?
  4. Will you lead the attempt for a single-payer healthcare system?
  5. Your opponent, Mr. Trump, has a position on free trade that is very similar to Senator Bernie Sanders’ approach. During the primary, Sanders protectionist rhetoric forced you to recalibrate your stance on trade, specifically the TPP. Could you take a moment and spell out how you differ from Mr. Trump and Mr. Sanders on trade policy?

 

Or course, there are other questions I would like to ask about–things about the email server, the decision to take out Bin Laden, her Wall Street speeches, and the shocking policy of choosing outcome based Supreme Court justices. But these questions would do for starters.

ROMNEY VS OBAMA–FLASH DEBATE OPINION

ROUND ONE: ROMNEY

I just finished watching the first presidential debate in Denver, Colorado between President Obama and Mitt Romney. I didn’t get to watch it in real time because they scheduled it during my small group meeting. I told both candidates that Wednesday night was a church night and not very good for me. They were both willing to change it but the networks wouldn’t budget. Sigh.

So, I DVR’d it and as soon as I got home I popped some popcorn and watched it straight through. My family even watched it with me. Kim swiped my popcorn and finished it off but I didn’t care. I was in a political geek mojo.

Let me disclaim two things. One–I endorse no political candidate. I have reservations about Mr. Romney and the President supports some public policies which I find untenable. Two–I have not fact checked anything. My opinion here is based solely on the performance of the debate as a speaking art.

Here is what I noticed and what interested me.

1. Mitt Romney won the debate, hands down. In fact, he commanded the stage over the President. This surprised me quite a bit, to be honest. Mr. Romney was focused and on message. He succeeded in presenting the President as a ‘big government’ man contrasted with his ‘small business’ model.

2. The President looked very uncomfortable defending the home field. Four years ago he was the one fighting for change and that fit him well. Now, he has to defend the status quo and that does not come as natural for him. Several times he talked about bad things like corporations and loopholes for moving companies. That is usually something the challenger should say, not the incumbent.

3. Jim Lehrer was awful. I’ve seen him moderate other debates much better than this one. Tonight he seemed to have no control. His questions were okay enough, but they were not as specific as one would like. However he failed miserably to keep the candidates on target and on time. It felt like there were so many other topics that needed to be addressed that were never gotten to.

4. The President needs to smile more. He has a great affable smile that makes me want to like him. However, tonight he was in full “Professor Obama” mode and kept his likeable nature bottled up. I do not know if this was a calculated decision or just how he felt tonight, but it was not a positive for him.

5. Mr. Romney could have played one of the robots from the Terminator movies.

6. What was that noise about three quarters through the debate backstage? Both Romney and the President jumped and turned to look. I bet they were both thinking the same thing: Duck!

7. Neither one wore very nice ties. Romney’s tie had a funky knot I didn’t like and the Presidents tie screamed NERD.

LOOK AT THOSE HIDEOUS NECKTIES

Okay, those are the things I noticed. I’m going to bed now. I am looking forward to the Paul Ryan VS Joe Biden debate. Joe Biden scares me, which is why I pray for the Presidents health often.