A political scientist who accurately predicted the midterm blue wave months before it happened issued another prediction in the New York Times Thursday — that Donald Trump is going to lose in 2020.
“What if I were to tell you that barring a significant unforeseen shock to the system,” Christopher Newport University political professor Dr. Rachel Bitecofer wrote, “the outcome of 2020 is already set in stone?”
Leading up to the midterms, Bitecofer created a forecasting model informed by partisan polarization in American politics. In particular, she focused on the concept of “negative partisanship” in which people from the party not in power develop a fever to vote for candidates opposing that which is.
“Motivated by the threat posed by the Trump administration, casual Democratic voters, especially college-educated women, have been activated since Mr. Trump’s election and will remain activated so long as the threat he presents to them remains,” the political scientist wrote.
Gone is the “complacent Democratic electorate of the 2010 and 2014 congressional midterms as well as the 2016 presidential election,” Bitecofer wrote. “It has been replaced by a galvanized Democratic electorate that will produce the same structural advantage for Democrats that manifested in the 2018 midterms.”
She predicted that the Democratic “surge won’t be uniform” — that the party will keep losing ground in states like Missouri while making gains in “urban, more diverse, better-educated and more liberal-friendly states.”
“In short,” Bitecofer wrote, “the 2020 presidential election is shaping up as a battle of the bases, and the Democrats’ base is simply bigger.”
“We’ll spend the next 21 months captivated by an election whose outcome may already be determined because of polarization and negative partisanship,” she concluded. “Democrats have a clear path to recapturing the White House. It is hard to imagine any other president facing these conditions running for re-election. But needless to say, Mr. Trump isn’t just any other president.”