Thursday, December 03, 2015

Half-empty glass

I don't know the percentage of registered Democrats, Republicans, and unaffiliated voters, so I can't give precise figures, but this is my general impression:

Neither Democrats nor Republicans have a majority of registered voters. To win, both sides need to attract unaffiliated voters. 

Both parties have almost enough partisan voters to win, but they need unaffiliated voters (or crossover voters) to put a Democrat or Republican candidate over the top.

It's like three glasses of water. Both Democrat and Republican candidates begin with a glass that's fairly full. So they just need to make up the difference by siphoning water from the third class to top off their glass. 

Let's say Hillary becomes the Democrat nominee. She will basically get 100% of Democrats. 

Let's say Cruz or Rubio becomes the Republican nominee. He will probably get about 100% of the Republican vote. 

Suppose Trump is the nominee. He will get far less than 100% of the Republican vote. From what I've read, many conservatives have said they won't vote for Trump no matter what.

So the initial water level for his glass is far below Hillary's. He starts much lower. That means he must get enough unaffiliated voters just to get back up to the level where Cruz or Rubio begin, plus enough additional unaffiliated voters to put him over the top.

By contrast, Hillary has to get far fewer unaffiliated voters to put her over the top, because her glass is so much fuller to begin with. And they'd be competing for the same unaffiliated voters. It seems like Hillary has a strong completive advantage under that scenario. 

Suppose Cruz or Rubio becomes the nominee, and Trump runs as a third-party candidate. There will be a two-way split in the Republican vote between Trump and the Republican nominee, as well as a three-way split in the unaffiliated vote between Hillary, Trump, and the Republican nominee. It seems like Hillary would be undefeatable under that scenario. 


  1. One word decides this election: "Florida".

    1. Even Florida is not enough. For example:

    2. I personally think we need to get used to saying "Mrs. President", but be that as it may, I was at a semi-private conference recently where two active Capitol Hill lobbyists for a prominent company which shall remain unnamed covered several versions of electoral maps, and virtually every combination yielded a Dem victory.

      There were combinations wherein previously blue states could plausibly flip this cycle, yielding enough electoral college votes for GOP victory - but in no scenario was it possible without Florida.

      Basic math and general stupidity of the American electorate almost guarantee Hillary's win before the campaign even begins. It's pretty disheartening really.

    3. It's not terrible. GOP has 50/50 to hold Senate, and it is exceptionally unlikely Democrats take back the House. 2018 will be a very difficult year for Democrats in the Senate, especially if Hillary is President; she is unlikely to get much done, even if elected. The major damage, of course, will be her SCOTUS appointments.

  2. It seems like Hillary would be undefeatable under that scenario.

    Yup, that's why I've said that the way to defeat Hillary is to do it ***NOW***, ***BEFORE*** she becomes the national Democratic candidate. Conservatives need to undermine her candidacy ***NOW***. If necessary, even help promote Bernie Sanders' candidacy for the purpose of undermining hers.

    Not that my opinion matters, but I just don't understand why so many conservatives can't calculate the above equation that Steve outlined above. It's so obvious that I'm scratching my head wondering why ANY conservative or Republican or Christian (or any combination of those) is promoting Trump.