Swimming against the tide: NY prof. predicts big Trump win in November
President Donald Trump’s favorite pollster must be Rasmussen Reports.
When other surveys convey bad news for the president or his policies, Rasmussen typically has been there to shoot rays of light through the gloom. Yet last week even Rasmussen reflected other recent polls. Rasmussen noted that its latest poll showed Trump trailing Democrat Joe Biden by 10 percentage points.
But last week the president could still find another bright spot on the allegedly dark horizon.
Stony Brook University professor Helmut Norpoth applied his election-picking model and determined that Trump will win in November.
Norpoth’s “Primary Model” gave Trump a 91 percent chance of winning on Nov. 3.
Moreover, the professor’s analysis projected Trump winning 362 electoral votes out of the 538 available. Trump won 304 electoral votes in 2016.
According to Mediaite, Norpoth developed his system in 1996. Since then, he has predicted five of the last six presidential elections correctly.
His lone miss was in 2000 when Republican George W. Bush defeated Democrat Al Gore. Yet in that race, Gore won the popular vote by a half-million votes.
But Norpoth noted that when applied to past elections over the last century, he would have correctly called 25 out of 27 presidential contests. Besides W., the Primary Model’s only other miscue was Democrat John F. Kennedy’s victory over Republican Richard Nixon in 1960. Many Nixon diehards, however, maintained that he lost because of election shenanigans in Texas and Illinois, which, had they gone for Nixon, would have put the former vice president in the White House by two electoral votes.
Mediaite pointed out that Norpoth’s system is built around early enthusiasm at the ballot box, rather than media-driven opinion polls.
Biden lagged the field terribly in Iowa and New Hampshire, taking just 15.8 percent and 8.4 percent of the vote, respectively, before rebounding with a win in South Carolina.
Contrast that with Trump.
In May the University of Virginia’s Center for Politics observed that during those primary contests the president’s “‘unshakable’ rapport with the Republican Party’s base may be leading GOP partisans to do something unusual historically: turn out in uncontested primaries.
“In state after state,” UVA pointed out, “Trump would routinely receive far more raw votes than previous sitting presidents who found themselves in lightly-contested reelection primaries.”
It remains to be seen whether Trump — or, looking at it from the other side, radical, culture-canceling Democrats — will drive voters to the polls to give the president a second term.
Still, as Mediaite reported, Norpoth says his method “succeeds … by discounting public opinion surveys.”
“The terrain of presidential contests is littered with nominees who saw a poll lead in the spring turn to dust in the fall,” he said. “The list is long and discouraging for early frontrunners. Beginning with Thomas Dewey in 1948, it spans such notables as Richard Nixon in 1960, Jimmy Carter in 1980, Michael Dukakis in 1988, George H.W. Bush in 1992, and John Kerry in 2004, to cite just the most spectacular cases.”
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