Monday, June 13, 2016

Terrorism and the Election

One of the common refrains has been that Hillary Clinton will win unless something bad happens like a recession or terrorist attack.  Well, it is too late for a recession to make a difference, but we know have that terrorist attack.  Will it make a difference?

Perhaps it is wishful thinking, but I don't think so.  It goes to the basic problem Trump has: he is unqualified to be president.  In a term of crisis, will people turn to him?  Will they think he has the right ideas and can handle the tough decisions?   The past 24 hours suggests that he lacks any/all of the qualities people want in a leader during a crisis.

Sure, the resort to hate might play well, and fear could help him.  But his first actions were to take credit for getting things right--and was widely scorned.  This morning's messaging suggests that Obama is actually working for the terrorists.  This may play well for Trump's base, but not so much for anyone else.

Here's the thing: the GOP is smaller than the Democrats, so a winning Republican candidate needs to reach out to independents and right-leaning Democrats.  This is a key part of why the primaries are so very different from the general election AND why Trump's doubling down on his primary strategies is problematic for him. 

I still think that all of the fundamentals of this election mean that HRC will win:
  • the economy is not bad
  • the incumbent is popular
  • Trump has no organization
  • HRC's organization is excellent, has great data and digital games
  • the electoral college favors the Democrats
  • the hate/fear mongering will mean that Trump can only get white votes
  • Trump's misogyny produces a large gap in attracting the votes of women, so he will need to incredibly well among white men
  • Bernie will endorse HRC tomorrow, so talk of party disunity will fade soon enough
  • The Democratic bench is deep with strong campaigners: President Obama, VP Biden, Michelle Obama, Bill Clinton, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, etc.  Which Republican stars will help Trump run from coast to coast?  
 Anyhow, it may be too soon to think of this stuff, but I can't help it.  All I know is that yesterday was an awful event, with another one that could have been as awful that was prevented in L.A.  Does it move the needle in American politics?  It should, given how many mass killings the US has been having lately.  But I doubt it, as others have noted, if the slaughter of a bunch of kids is not going to make much of a difference, not sure why this event would, except, of course, that the perpetrator was a Muslim. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Betting markets barely moved this weekend: