While the 2016 presidential race will without a doubt be a three-ring circus of reality television antics, corruption scandals, and fools on parade, up until November 8th, it is fairly average – in terms of polling, that is. With less than two months until Election Day, the poll numbers for Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton are tightening. The reason is not the sweetest little pill: Trump is gaining, and Clinton is losing.
John Cassidy’s New Yorker article, “The Election Is Still Hillary Clinton’s To Lose“, dated September 6, asserts that though Clinton has problems with her public image, namely through the past four years of regularly leaked scandals, as well as a typical drop from peak popularity following the Democratic National Convention, she is projected to handily win the election, though he admits: “We should always have expected a close race”. For Cassidy, anxiety amongst Clinton’s supporters, in a nutshell, is the result of normal election phenomena and negative press. The focus, thus, is on Clinton’s sphere. The elephant glued to the other side of the election coin that seems to be missed is this: Why is Donald Trump gaining in the polls?
Whether it be fear, conviction, or just plain hate for Hillary Clinton, more and more people are planning to vote for Donald Trump on election day. To some, the reasoning is in the uncanny resemblance to the 1968 election cycle. Student protests, race riots, sexual revolution, a war in a foreign land, and a ‘law and order candidate‘. No, not Richard Nixon. It’s Donald Trump.
While most of the conservative voting bloc is well represented in the polls already, recent campaigning and outreach to racial minorities and blue-collar workers is starting to make a dent, or in terms of popularity, a bubble. This has led to an unusual shift in red states and blue states, as characterized by a recent Washington Post graphic. Though any sort of shift to the left on the part of Deep South states is unlikely, in my mind, the close races in Wisconsin, Michigan, and Ohio are worth more scrutiny.