The Most Tremendous Reelection Campaign in American History Ever
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« on: August 17, 2020, 11:15:27 pm »

Inside the chaotic, desperate, last-minute Trump 2020 reboot.

People on the campaign say they believe — have to believe — there’s a way forward. If they just win North Carolina (where Trump leads by an average of one or two percentage points), Florida (where Biden leads by five), and Arizona (Biden by two), states Trump won in 2016, then they need only one state in the so-called blue wall of Pennsylvania (Biden by six or seven), Wisconsin (Biden by seven), and Michigan (Biden by seven or eight). These three states had gone Democratic in every presidential election since 1992 before Hillary Clinton lost them by 77,000 votes combined in 2016. Staffers assume that Ohio is already a Trump lock, although Biden is ahead there, too, by an average of more than two points.

“I don’t think we’re gonna lose this campaign,” said Bob Paduchik, Trump’s 2016 Ohio state director and a senior adviser to the 2020 campaign. “I don’t think we’re losing this campaign.” He told me the polling averages didn’t show Biden winning Ohio. I said that was wrong. Well, Paduchik said, the RealClearPolitics average didn’t show Biden winning. I told him that was wrong too — that I happened to be looking at that particular website as we spoke. Even Rasmussen, Trump’s preferred polling outfit, had Trump down by five, I said. “No,” Paduchik said, Rasmussen didn’t have a poll like that. When I said it sure did, that I was looking right at it, Paduchik said he couldn’t speak to that poll since he hadn’t reviewed it himself. Either way, he said, the polls were silly, based as they are on the premise that they measure how people would vote if the election were held today. “Well, the election is not today!” he said. “We haven’t had our debates and our convention yet. It’s sort of a fantasy guess.”

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