The model that accurately predicted Democratic gains in the House four months before the 2018 midterm elections indicates that President Trump will lose his reelection bid for a second term as president.
The latest “Negative Partisanship” model by Rachel Bitecofer, the assistant director of the Wason Center for Public Policy at Christopher Newport University, predicts Trump will lose the Electoral College with the Democratic candidate earning 278 votes.
The model predicts Trump will earn 197 electoral votes. That leaves 63 votes a toss-up – still not enough to overcome the Democrat’s lead.
Bitecofer focused on Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania as states the incumbent will have difficulty winning this time around.
“The complacent electorate of 2016, who were convinced Trump would never be president, has been replaced with the terrified electorate of 2020, who are convinced he’s the Terminator and can’t be stopped,” she said. “Under my model, that distinction is not only important, it is everything.”
She also noted that his low approval rating among independents as an impediment to a second term.
Bitecofer’s model predicted a 42 seat House Democratic pickup in 2018, and the Democrats won 40. Many other models did not predict such a large victory.
She acknowledged the Democratic candidate has not been clearly identified, but argued it is not incredibly important who the nominee is.
“Does the Democrat’s nominee matter? Sure, to an extent. If the ticket has a woman, a person of color or a Latino, or a female who is also a person of color, Democratic Party turnout will surge more in really important places,” Bitecofer wrote. “If the nominee is Biden he’d be well-advised to consider Democratic voter turnout his number one consideration when drawing his running mate to avoid the critical mistake made by Hillary Clinton in 2016.”
“But the Democrats are not complacent like they were in 2016 and I doubt there is any amount of polling or favorable forecasts that will make them so. That fear will play a crucial role in their 2020 victory. We will not see a divided Democratic Party in 2020,” she wrote.