Trump’s strengths were political rallies of devoted followers, a decent economy stimulated by deficit spending, and establishment media coverage. Trump had a message which resonated with many Americans which was a border security to keep out illegals and criminals, and economic loss of jobs which was blamed on China.
Quick forward to today and the Covid-19 has radically changed the landscape of hope and optimism which Trump generated in and after the 2016 election. Gone are the rallies of devoted followers who were used as sources for signing up new Republican voters and lured in media coverage.
The economy is in shambles with unemployment through the roof and many small businesses destroyed on into the future with imposed restrictive practices or lockdowns. There is a fearful reduced return of old customers to social and business gatherings who fear for their health.
The establishment media has become Trump’s enemy and he no longer gives interviews with left wing media talking heads. Fox trying to give “fair” coverage to both the Democratic and Republican side further waters down Trump’s air time. A fundamental character bias against him may be getting stronger due to incessant negative establishment media coverage and minimum coverage of his speeches.
Mexico has helped with the border situation to some extent and the border issue is now virtually absent and seldom mentioned. Economic malaise is now blamed on Trump or China’s virus and promising trade negotiations with China are at a standstill.
A new threat to Trump has arisen due to Covid-19 and that is voter fraud which is a distinct possibility with the mail-in voting ballots and not the absentee ballots.
Covid-19 has disarmed Trump’s major strengths and he is frankly groping for a message which will resonate with voters, especially the independents or swing voters. He is pushing law and order but frankly most of the nation remains unaffected by protest marches and riots in the streets which are mostly confined to Democrat major cities. Trying to scare voter’s with Biden’s socialist or progressive tendencies is also largely ringing shallow since not too many Americans know what socialism and progressivism really is or are afraid of it.
Divide and conquer has been a famous military and political tactic used by Trump which seems to have truly divided the Democratic party and resulted in a fallback to establishment Biden and his globalist tendencies and coziness with China. How many of Bernie’s followers will actually even turn out to vote for Biden is debatable. If enthusiasm is a sign of victory then Biden and the Democrats have very little of it.
It’s the economy, stupid. The real swing voters in this election will be all those negatively affected in the entertainment industry, the travel industry, the restaurant business, and small businesses in general. If they blame Covid-19 and China for their financial problems and not Trump then Trump still has enough name recognition to make a go of it with a fighting chance.
If Trump is blamed for the economic malaise then it seems he may not win the election. The economy may improve slightly by election time but that seems unlikely to change the present and ongoing uncertainty of election results for 2020, especially in the battleground states. These are unprecedented times for election forecasting and frankly polls no longer have any accurate or reliable significance.