Trump’s disastrous months have resulted in voters voting early and making their decision as Joe Biden’s lead is solidifying.
Trump has stumbled through a disastrous stretch that has included embarrassing leaks about his comments disparaging military members, a ridiculed debate performance, and a Rose Garden ceremony that some describe as a superspreader for a deadly virus.
In the homestretch of the 2020 campaign, there has been little good news for the incumbent. And that is showing up as an ominous turn for him in the polls as Biden consolidates support. What had been a steady national lead for Biden in the high single digits during the late summer has expanded to 12 points in early October, according to a Washington Post polling average.
Elections in the United States have increasingly become a two outcome affair. The first type of election is typified by the presidential race of 2000, the too close to call nailbiter. The second type is the wave election. Barack Obama’s election in 2008 and Trump’s election in 2016 were both waves in the respect that they lifted one party into power. Obama’s victory was larger than Trump’s, but they both had the same end result of one-party control of Congress and the presidency for a period of time.
The conventional mainstream political wisdom before the coronavirus pandemic gripped America was that 2020 was setting up to be a close election.
While treating polling numbers as horserace gospel is foolish, but polls, when looked at together, do reveal the trajectory of a race and can provide hints as to which of the two modern outcomes voters are moving toward.
There is no mistaking the current trajectory of the 2020 race. Early voter turnout is record-shattering in many locations. Millions of people have voted, and are voting, and the majority of those voters appear to be supporting Joe Biden.
Hillary Clinton’s lead in 2016 was not stable. She would gain and lose 5 points or more from poll to poll. Looking back, the Clinton campaign’s polling volatility was a signal of soft support. Biden’s lead has stayed consistent, and with more people voting early than ever before, it is an omen that Trump is in big trouble.
For more discussion about this story join our Rachel Maddow and MSNBC group.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association