The Wave That Could Carry Trump to Re-election

National and state polls don’t tell the whole story. A global anti-elite surge improves the president’s chance of victory.

Comments: 267

  1. Trump is not an outsider. He is, and always was, an elite.

  2. Difference is he has never pretended to be anything but. He has never gone on a duck hunt in dry clean pressed pants with a crease and a shot gun that has never been fired. Rather he flew in on his own branded airplane and bragged about how beautiful and huge it was. Then he told the crowd he would fight for them. That was the difference they didn’t want someone pretending to be one of them.

  3. @Michelle Llyn An important distinction: Trump is rich. The "elites" do not consider him one of their tribe, and he has always resented being an outsider. In this way, he identifies with many in his base.

  4. @Michelle Llyn: disagree. He is an elite wannabe, just won't put in the effort.

  5. A global anti elite surge improves Trump’ s chance of victory? The Dems are obsessed with micro-trends? I then went to the Free Beacon site. Oh ok.

  6. @Old School -- Recommended X 1000!

  7. So there is a global vote? The thesis seems to assume accurate local polling will miss the global vote. It is a living. Presumably.

  8. I'm willing to believe that there is such a thing as an "anti-elite" movement, but one can only hope that anti-elite doesn't also mean anti-competence.

  9. @Louis Sadly it does in the Trump Administration. A cabinet of the corrupt and or the incompetent.

  10. Mr. Continetti writes "What unites these issues [e.g., carbon taxes] is the idea that elites insulate themselves from the costs of the policies they impose on others." Mr. Continetti must surely be referring to a rash of gratuitous tariffs, the relentless dismantling of the few remaining elements of the ACA and the destruction, the lower orders of the American labor force through escalating deportations, or the rotting of crops in their fields because harvesting workers can no longer be found. Yep, those danged pointy-headed elites! They carry a heavy price.

  11. @John LeBaron Well said. Alter your quotation thus: "Mr. Continetti writes "What unites these issues [e.g., climate change] is the idea that elites insulate themselves from the costs of the policies they impose on others." Major investors in fossil fuels will be among the last to suffer from climate change. They have successfully externalized all the costs of responding to it.

  12. @John LeBaron Maybe Trumps incompetent handling of the tariffs is something to laugh at but what have the Democrats done to get back American jobs? He thinks lower taxes for the rich creates jobs. He may be wrong but what were Democrats going to do about jobs? Teach coal miners to write code? Would the price of medical gone down if there was a Democrat was President? How about the price of energy? But your too smart for the rest of us. The Democrats are functioning under vanity alone. If they stood up or the American people instead of acting like a bunch of stuck up over educated know nothings they might win an election.

  13. @JoeG Joe. Not sure what you mean by "get back American jobs." Unemployment is at historic lows. Maybe get back good American jobs. Unions would help, but Republicans are very anti-union. Dems are pro-union. The price of medical care did go down when Obama was President, for millions of people who were able to afford it because of the ACA. Republicans, and Trump, want to destroy the ACA. The notion that Dems are "over educated" snobs is just Fox News propaganda. You might check out Elizabeth Warren's proposals. She has a lot of ideas about policies to help ordinary Americans.

  14. You think people will get wise the "best health care plan in history" that turns into a plan to kick people off their health care. There are always going to be a sizable number of Trump true believers, but I sense that they are not growing. His plans and promises are clearly the triumph of hope over experience. Like Joe McCarthy he's approaching the sell by date pretty fast.

  15. @Milliband The Trump supporters may not be growing, but they are crystallizing and solidifying their beliefs and angers. I am shocked at how many highly educated professionals, and otherwise very intelligent people I know who are ardent climate change deniers, 2nd ammendment nuts, and trump supporters. It truly scares me to hear the virulence of their hatred for "the libs", "snowflakes", "dems", "elites"and "socialism". 1,000 years ago Muslim civilization was the most advanced in the world. Then they faltered, and effectively destroyed themselves. Is that where we are headed?

  16. He's gonna win. It's hard to explain the pain that causes me to write it. The momentum is there. People like things to be the same, even if they're a terrible same. Many people won't get into process. Too busy living their lives. (And I get that.) He's gonna win. The more I say it to myself, see it in writing, acknowledge it ... maybe it won't be so ... discouraging when it occurs.

  17. @jazz one You speak the truth. But if this happens, I will move my family out the USA. I know of better places. But first I will cry.

  18. @jazz one He won’t win and nobody is moving anywhere. There are too many millennials who are becoming of age and are going to vote. Unlike Trump and his ilks, they care about the environment and their future. Trump represents the past. It is time to move on.

  19. @Billy - funny how they didn't think to do that last time.

  20. so yes Merkel overshot but what is it the so called antielitists want? what is their plan to confront climate change, except to pretend it does not exist? guess they are willing to be potentially driven out of their homes, lose their insurance, pay tens of billions in costs. the "populists" are happy to bring us to environmental catastrophe harder and faster. what is the point? like the boards and management of fossil fuel producers are not elitist? the Saudis?bet most of them are doing very nicely. they"ll be in bunkers when the time comes. and the answer to migration, which is not incorrectly viewed as overwhelming at times, is to build walls, cut off family planning and other support, ignore or even abet civil conflict? and the terrorism issue, though real, is exaggerated to manipulate fear. seriously, what is the populist goal? other than promoting naked authoritarianism with the support of (the real) corporate elites. by the time the conned have figured it out, it will be too late.

  21. @Stefanie "... what is it the so called antielitists want?" I believe that the first item on their list of demands is "Capital Letters."

  22. @Stefanie “by the time the conned have figured it out, it will be too late.” All the points you make are right on the money ... except your last line: What makes you think the conned will EVER figure it out?

  23. The author misses some key facts. Trump was elected by a minority of voters, and the Republican Party leans heavily on suppression of the vote and manipulation of district boundaries to accomplish their "anti-elite" electoral feats - ironically, all strategies heavily funded by the economic elite. The economic elite has invented the idea that there is this other elite, you know, the one that wants to put curbs on the greed and destructive behavior of the real elite. That has been their propaganda strategy for decades, and it is now all coming together in one worldwide revolt against the rich getting much richer.

  24. @Pete Must disagree a bit. I've heard the "minority of voters" argument, and it makes no sense. Trump played by the rules of the game. The electoral college decides the Presidency. The entirety of the popular vote margin Clinton won by is nearly completely explained by California - where she won in a landslide. Trump knew he'd never take CA, and spent virtually no resources there. Had it been a contest of the popular vote, both candidates would have run with very different strategies. And as far as "the elites"? If you believe the world is run by elites, both parties are equally culpable. Getting into the debates requires donations from 65K people. So we have a lot of candidates asking for $1 donations. However, winning the Presidency requires (at the very least) a half billion dollars (Hillary spent close to a billion.) Almost an obscene amount of money. You don't raise that much in $1 increments. Big, big money will get involved. Just saying that the article is (hopefully) a loud reminder. I have friends on the left (I'm an independent) that don't even consider it possible that Trump could win re-election. At the end of the day, the winning candidate has to win the electoral college, not the popular vote, and they will need a lot of money from "the elites". Just sayin'.

  25. @JRC This. The Democrat party is just as "elitist" as GOP. The Electoral college is fine as it keeps a few pockets of the country from controlling the whole thing, which is definitely a good thing for the majority of us. The plain fact is, the Democrats have a huge advantage in the Electoral college. Two states, California and NY, get them over 100 votes and they're near-locks for Democrats. The GOP candidate has to win a minimum of 30+ states to have a shot given this advantage for the Democrats. That's no easy task.

  26. @Michael E Please do your arithmetic! The small, mainly Red, states have a huge per-voter advantage in the EC, and an even greater advantage in the Senate. Given that the small states are largely rural, and the Red/Blue split is highly rural/metropolitan, it's not difficult for the Republicans to to win those 30+ states. At the Senate level, the Republican advantage currently looks unassailable.

  27. Obviously statistics and mathematics are not your strong suit. Trump's victory was a statistical anomaly. Out of 130 million votes cast, he won 3 key states by 70,000 votes. So if the election were held the day before or the day after he probably would have lost. People die, they get sick, they move, their committments change. Politics aside, he is very unlikely to duplicate that anomaly again.

  28. @James Ricciardi Agreed. Let's not forget Comey's dropping that letter a week before election day, the Russians getting the polling data from Rick Gates/Paul Manafort, and the Russian trolling on social media intended to suppress the black vote (as it turned out, that's what happened in Detroit, Philly, and Milwaukee).

  29. @Mimi True, but Trump may even have more help from his foreign friends this time as the love triangle of Mitch, Elaine and Trump reaches into the highest levels of Russia and China. It is difficult to anticipate such affects. So I have just ignored them.

  30. @James Ricciardi Unless the Democrats nominate Biden or continue to talk reparations. Any by the way, Pelosi is also closingup on McConnell in the creep factor.

  31. "The Washington Free Beacon is an American conservative political journalism website launched in 2012." -- Wikipedia So of course Trump will handily win re-election in 2020 in their opinion. Trouble is, the author has a valid point. There is way too much anti-minority, anti-women (Alabama, anyone?) and anti-intellectualism out there to take this opinion piece lightly. The win to oust (46-1) needs to be a landslide, not a squeaker. Every vote counts in the election... unless the incumbent party figures out how to not make it count-- don't discount that either.

  32. @The View From Downriver Let's not forget the anti-abortion bill in Alabama was introduced by a female delegate and signed by a female governor. That's not exactly "anti-woman" as you suggest.

  33. @John They were Standing By Their Men, obeying without questioning. Let's see Alabama care for these children AFTER they're born. Oh, right, I forgot, they are mostly "those people" who can't just go somewhere else to handle matters. They deserve to be born, but after that they're on their own. Pro-birth does not equal pro-life.

  34. John, women can be anti-woman. There are actually women against the Equal Rights Amendment!

  35. This article connects dots—like stars in the sky—to find a picture it wants to see. I have two quick responses. First of all, the contrast being drawn is not truly between “elites” vs. “the people” as Mr. Continetti would have it. It is between people who are fundamentally looking BACKWARD socially and politically, and people who are looking FORWARD. I see no evidence in his article that LOOKING BACKWARD is somehow a global superpower, though it is now, as it has always been, a profound human temptation. But secondly, though I believe his argument is fundamentally WRONG, I prefer to believe it fundamentally RIGHT. In 2016 progressives predicted victory and were shocked by defeat. Trumpism was elated by an entirely unanticipated victory. Not so, now. Let Trumpism crow. Let progressives soberly realize they are in a fight for the future of the soul of our country. And then we will see.

  36. @Paul McGlasson It is between people who are fundamentally looking BACKWARD socially and politically, and people who are looking FORWARD. Regressive: Backard. Progressive: Progress, Forward.

  37. @Paul McGlasson "This article connects dots—like stars in the sky—to find a picture it wants to see." Brilliant - thought provoking line. But Trump knows instinctively what picture people do see and what shadow emotions people feel - that is his genius. It takes him no effort -- the dark picture of the American subconscious is clear to him and that is his political genius and our universal fear.

  38. @Paul McGlasson Written by a true global urban elite!

  39. Rather than corralling reasons why this author is wrong, we should take him seriously. Trump will be an incumbent, most likely running on a strong economy. He will be difficult to beat. If the thought of his re-election scares you, let that fear push you to action. There are special elections happening all the time. In 2017 and 2018, Democrats fought for every one tooth and nail. Since the midterms, that energy has dissipated. It’s time to get started again. We have an excellent chance to win the Virginia state legislature this year. Look up a SwingLeft and get involved now.

  40. @Mercury S seventeen months is a long time. Why do you think the economy will still be good, when red warning lights are flashing everywhere?

  41. Mercury, Thank you for that suggestion. Because of it, I just donated to a couple of Democratic Virginia State Legislative candidates. It is true: talk is pretty pointless if we don’t act.

  42. Trump is the greatest President. That is the consensus of his huge base. One can only watch in amazement. These people believe what they want and they just are not going to see what everybody else does.

  43. I don’t know which “elites” the writer refers to when discussing climate change activities, but there is a worldwide movement right now, amongst all classes of people, and governments large and small, to radically change our approach to this problem. From New York, to California, to Sweden, to France, and all over the world, citizens are actively searching for solutions. If Mr. Continetti insists on calling that elitist, he is wrong.

  44. @Bevan Davies The climate change issue is loaded in the sense that it has to be done carefully, and not on the backs of those who can barely afford their bills. Just look at what happened in France - Macron's careless one-two punch ( a tax cut for the rich, followed by a gas tax on everyone) was the final straw that brought on the Yellow Vest movement.

  45. @Ellen Actually, any plan will be complex and involve many moving parts, and not depend on those who can least afford massive change. In fact, many changes will help those people. As far as France and the yellow-vest movement, it is far more complicated than you describe. Macron was very heavy-handed in his approach, but the French dislike intensely any change like this.

  46. We have here a mighty selective reading of why large numbers of the world's citizens are disgusted with prevailing elites. There may be Trump voters animated primarily by immigration,the terrorism bogeyman and, in the U.S., non-existent carbon taxes, but alone these interests could never put Trump over the top. One might look instead to global fiscal austerity, the apparent legal immunity enjoyed by elites and corporate entities, secretly negotiated investor agreements which put first world workers in competition with their counterparts in the third world and a neo-liberal order which has transferred wealth upward for many years now. These grievances may not be heard at MAGA rallies, but without them, Trump would have remained a TV personality. But that's apparently a wave this author would rather pretend doesn't exist.

  47. @jrd Speaking of waves, Sanders filled football stadiums full of cheering crowds when he ran in 2016. This seldom got mentioned here at the NYT.

  48. The key to this election is whether the Dems go with a moderate like Biden or a progressive like Sanders. If they go with someone like Sanders then Trump wins in a landslide. Sanders demonstrated that he doesn't have the temperament to be POTUS when he called for giving incarcerated felons the right to vote. The Boston Marathon Bomber kills three people & injures 280 more. Bernie’s concern? That he gets his absentee ballot. This plays into the Fox News narrative that Dems are soft on crime. Sanders proved his critics right: he's too far to the left, too irrational, & has poor political instincts. His supporters will say he's right on all the other issues: climate change, the economy, etc. Guess what? It doesn't matter. There're 23 other Democratic candidates who don't want to give incarcerated felons voting rights. This was a gaffe of epic proportions. On this basis alone he will lose the majority of independent swing voters. But even someone like Sen Warren will find beating Trump a challenge. There's no progressive majority in America & never will be. The numbers are simply not there. And there certainly is no progressive Electoral College coalition in America that could get to the needed 270 votes. This point can't be emphasized enough: almost every progressive candidate in whom Democrats invested tremendous time, money, & emotional energy in 2018— lost. Almost every progressive initiative on the ballot in this country was voted down. Biden gives us our best chance to win.

  49. Climate change movement does not look elite to me, it’s mostly young people in school or college who carry it and who will suffer the consequences of the climate crisis It seems rather the older generation who caused the problem and denies it who support Trump. The denial units them not a scorn of elites.

  50. @Oliver Herfort The climate change movement is anti-elistist, since it's based almost solely on Science. But, in this country, one wouldn't know that. Instead, they are conditioned to believe it is a left-wing creation or a chinese hoax. I'm embarrassed to call myself an American.

  51. The crowds of people in Florida 20,000 strong love President Trump. The cheers and roars of approval are not just displayed in Orlando. Other parts of the country love him too. He has an appeal that has not been seen before. He speaks to them and there is mutual respect. Their love for each other is genuine and real. If all continues going well with our successful economy and stock market he should be a second term president. That would be a real boost to the nation and its citizens.

  52. They may love him, but the fact that they believe he loves them is the biggest tragedy in all of this.

  53. The respect is far from mutual. Trump despises his followers and delights only in his ability to pull the wool over their eyes.

  54. @KMW "mutual respect?" Oh, please. No one who acts like the president has respect for the people of this nation. DO you forget HE works for US. Would you allow your employee to lie to you, to make disparaging comments about other employees and clients? Do you allow him to come to work unprepared? Do you allow him to double-deal on contracts? Do you allow him to golf on your dime? Nah. He doesn't respect you.

  55. On point article which may come at the dismay of traditional NYT readers on the coasts. I live in MI and Trump is likely to win here again largely for two reasons. Many educated independents don't want higher taxes, especially those on their wealth. It's simply poor politics to run a campaign on increasing taxes as it gives the opponent a considerable edge up front. If the republicans are going to run up the debt, dems should be contrarian and actually run on cutting taxes also. Second, the less educated here are firm believers in his policies on illegal immigration as many believe it is reasonable, and the dems policies defy common sense. Trump is shrewd in portraying dems as caring more about illegal immigrants than US citizens. Statistically, Trump is very likely going to win again in 2020 and dems best chance to check him is keep the house. If they want any chance of winning the midwest, they'll need an upstart moderate candidate without baggage like Bullock. Personally, I voted for Obama and HRC but will go with Trump if the far left candidates like Warren, Harris, or Sanders get nominated.

  56. @Satishk Agreed, somewhat. People complain about taxes. At the same time - here in MI - they gripe about the crumbling infrastructures (I'm sure you know all about the infamous roads being yourself a resident of MI!), and wonder why it never gets fixed. So, you make a good point. It's just that the people complaining about "problems", are themselves "the problem".

  57. @TommyTuna When governor Whitmer proposed the massive gas tax to fix the roads, the pitchforks came out quickly. The people want to put everything on the credit card not pay with cash. Upfront promises of increasing taxes(higher marginal tax rates, taking cap off ss, and wealth tax) are simply going to turn voters toward the path of least resistance. Whitmer is a good model for the dems in the 2020 elections though. She beat a socialist in the primary al-sayed by being moderate and beat the pro trump republican candidate by focusing on healthcare, not taxes or immigration.

  58. @Satishk Yet many in the midwest and Pennsylvania voted in the 2016 primaries for Bernie Sanders, as they could see they finally might actually get something for their tax dollars. I think he could very handily beat Trump if nominated.

  59. This piece leaves no room for folks to have finally got hip to the 'Master Manipulators' manipulations...That there is no 'there' there. If folks had more economic savvy, they would certainly have caught on to the fact that borrowing money from tomorrow to inflate stock prices today is a bubble and it will eventually pop. If only that would happen BEFORE the election.

  60. What exactly is an elite, in your mind? Is it someone who is more knowledgeable than yourself on policy issues? Someone who enjoys reading and learning about issues that impact themselves and those around them? An altruistic person? Is an elite someone who makes rational decisions, based on evidence? A person who understands that change is needed, no matter how unpopular or discomforting, without which we condemn ourselves and future generations to catastrophe? To quote someone you probably view as an archetype elitist, "we must choose between what is easy and what is right." You conveniently leave out how the world is moving away from centrists, but towards those who are willing to make the right choice, not the easy one. (rise of the Greens, Independents, Justice Democrats, failure of Brexit implementation, failure of Netanyahu to form a government) Or, in your words, those darn elitists.

  61. There is something people should remember about 2016: more people voted AGAINST Hillary Clinton than FOR her. Yes, I know. Clinton had 3 million more votes than Trump. But add up all the votes for everyone other than Clinton (Trump, Stein, Johnson), 3 million more people voted AGAINST Clinton. That should give anyone pause here. The nation was telling us that they did not want members of the establishment. Are Democrats now running yet more members of that establishment? If Biden is nominated, that's just Hillary 2.0. Expect another vote against the establishment, paving the way for Trump.

  62. @Jason W Biden is not Hillary. Biden has charisma. People like him personally. Hillary had a kind of anti-charisma which made people hate her no matter how reasonable she was being. A while back Madam Secretary had 3 ex Secretaries of State on as guest stars, Clinton, Powell, and Albright, and Hillary was the only one who couldn’t manage to appear sincere. This despite actually caring about the subject matter. Policy wise, Biden’s pretty much More of the Same, but people vote more on perception than issues.

  63. @Jason W - the same can be said about Trump - more people voted against him than for him.What’s your point?

  64. If people voted against the establishment, then why did they get a President so embedded in the establishment? I cannot understand how people can vote for someone who is in the establishment or the elite as it has been called because they wanted to vote against it! Remember, Trump boasting that he could kill someone on 5th Avenue with no recourse. Your average person would get locked up for that, in fact your average person would get locked up for many of Trump’s behaviour, yet being part of the elite and establishment favours him over others ... and he knows it!

  65. Depressingly correct. That's why the House investigation and public hearings for potential impeachment must take place, and soon. The public uncovering of Trump's behind the scenes wrongdoings, with sworn testimony, coupled with his daily openly defiant refusal to follow the rule of law, may change enough minds about his viability to continue as President. And hopefully Democrats will not snatch defeat out of the jaws of victory again by thinking it will be easy to win against even a wounded Trump.

  66. I’m black and a son of immigrants, an automatic vote for Dems. I’ll be voting for Trump. His ways are not my ways but I do believe in his way he will always put America first. To me that’s refreshing. Also the border crisis just enrages me and seeing the Dems not doing anything to help stem the crisis angers me more. They’re putting sticking it to Trump over doing what’s right for the country. I really hope Trump wins though to me these new Dems are scary. They seem to be led by the nose by their radical base with no checks or brakes. If the Dems were still aligned with Bill Clinton’s ideology, I’d most likely vote for them in ‘20.

  67. @Ed In 2017 and 2018 the Republicans had control of the Presidency, House and Senate. What did they do about the border? Nothing. Why did it only become a big talking point after they lost the House?

  68. @Ed As a fellow immigrant I share your views. I just witnessed my state legislature, in all but name, appropriate private property, 'for the people' under the pretense of a 'housing emergency' that has been going on for 70 years. A legislature that will now give illegal immigrants drivers licenses, and endevour to destroy the last working institution in the NYC public school system, the specialized high schools. I have had quite enough! I have voted Dem since Bill Clinton. I have not made the decision to vote for Trump, but it is now not out of the question.

  69. It’s funny you should criticise the Democrats for having no checks or brakes when we have an incumbent in the White House who stated he was going to drain the swamp - he did drain it and then he filled it with murkier waters with worse creatures living in it. The corruption surrounding the GOP these days is not only wide spread but shocking in how they have filled their pockets at the expense of the working communities. There are no checks or brakes on the behaviour of the Republican Party.

  70. Mr. Continetti's warning is right on the money. But some good news is the anti-elitist thing works best only on the 40% of Americans who in the polls say they continue to support President Trump. And President Trump needed 48% of the popular vote to enable his razor-thin victory in 2016, and he'd need at least this share of the voters again to win in 2020. I'd like to think the 8% of Americans who voted for Trump in 2016 but who say they don't approve of him now work a little differently. In many cases what drove them to opt for Trump in 2016 is they felt their status in life had fallen, they were now holding lower-paying jobs, etc., and Trump talked a good game about how he was going to fix their problems. In the meantime the Democrats were obsessed with how awful Trump was, and they failed to appeal to this group. If Trump wins again in 2020 I believe it will be because the Democrats simply repeat the mistakes of 2016, the big one being to fail to appeal to the 8% group and address their pain. Our country is in big trouble, and our problems aren't about things like redoing our electoral system, which Mayor Pete was expounding on today. We need to address the woes of ordinary Americans, and if we simply do that we should be able to retire President Trump and get to work in repairing the damage this evil man has done to our beloved country.

  71. @Jerry Schulz, One big program which could help working class Americans is a HUGE, PLANET SAVING push towards a green, carbon free economy, and all he retrofitting, insulating, building of new infrastructure, retraining, building of solar, wind equipment, etc. And who are the "elites" that are opposed to this?

  72. @Mattie, great point. And I think we can have it all--we can finally get to work on saving the planet AND we can do this in a way that creates great jobs for the 8%, those Americans who need them the most.

  73. Mr. Continetti writes: "[E]lites insulate themselves from the costs of the policies they impose on others. It is the idea on which Mr. Trump and his anti-elitist supporters base their campaigns." Mr. Continetti is absolutely right. The amazing thing is that in this case, it's Mr. Trump playing the role of "elite" and so much of his base in the role of "other." It astounds me that so few of his supporters have caught on.

  74. There are a couple of other anti-elite candidates running - pm the left -Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders. Either one can capture the wave of sentiment against the status quo, which has brought us such vast income inequality - Bernie in particular. Trump mouthed many of Bernie's views in 2016 but he was a total fake. It remains to be seen whether the "elites" will permit an honest playing field in 2020 - if so, Bernie can beat Trump. Not sure if Warren can, she being a woman, and from Harvard (though her proposals would/should help level the playing field and possibly help save the shrinking middle class).

  75. @Ellen But neither Warren nor Sanders can match the primal moronic Bigotry of trump which is, after all, what his base base feeds on.

  76. In the 2016 election Trump took over the populism of Bernie Sanders, while Hillary took the route of the corporatists saying that everything was just swell with the economy. Everything was fine with the economy for those in the bubble of Wall Street , but communities that depended on factory jobs were in despair. This while Obama was pushing for the TPP (NAFTA on steroids) that would further hurt these factory towns, up to the election. No Bankers went to jail for the 2008 crash after Obama named Citigroups picks of Cabinet members that year. People were and are mad that the Democratic Party since Clinton has been the Party of Wall Street, while abandoning Unions because who else will they vote for they told themselves. The people who voted for Trump were deceived just that same as those voting for Obama who were looking for Hope and Change, yet they mostly got an neoliberal agenda. If Trump does not deliver on his populist agenda as he has abandoned so far than a populist such as Bernie, Tulsi or Elizabeth will certainly beat him. If Trump is not facing a populist then he will certainly win. So far the leadership of the Democratic Party has done everything in their power to reject a populist agenda in favor of policies favorable to their Wall Street donors. Sadly they would rather have Trump win than a populist, such as Bernie, Tulsi or Warren.

  77. @steve Unfortunately, you're exactly right. I felt a big cringe when I read that Nancy Pelosi met with Mayor Pete on the topic of how to quash Medicare for All. I doubt a Wall Street candidate can win, even if the game is rigged by the DNC and media. Sanders or Warren for me.

  78. Who are the elites? Is being educated and creating products that may be useful elitist? What do non elitists do? What is their contribution to the world? If Trump is their choice what he does he have to show that helped them? Being empty headed and not educating oneself is not a sustainable state of affairs. Non elitists buy Corporate America's products and support the mandate Maximize Stockholder Wealth which takes non elitists jobs to other countries leaving them without jobs as they are not retooling their skill sets fast enough to stay employed.

  79. @Hrao Well Told !!

  80. What the Democrats and the media have to face is their role in the utterly bizarre situation in which we find ourselves: how can a Donald Trump (like many Republicans before him) successfully sell himself as “anti-elite” and “populist” while single-mindedly pushing policies that steal political & economic power from the public to give to financial & corporate interests? It’s not a new question; Republican politicians & pundits have for decades been running against the government & the establishment that they, in fact, mostly constitute. They couldn’t pull off this trick if the opposition were offering a serious alternative, or if the media were doing their jobs.

  81. "And Jimmy Carter’s presidency was plagued by foreign policy setbacks and stagflation. Neither condition pertains today. The United States is not engaged in a major war. " So a trade war, and the continued loss of jobs to foreign countries doesn't count? Nor the continuation of the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and perhaps a new one with Iran, these don't count? Moreover, the "economic recovery", like all the recoveries this century have left the working and middle class behind. "Unemployment numbers" are an empty statistic, not revealing the lack of access to sustainable jobs that pay a living wage. In fact, the truth is that almost all of Trump's promises have not been kept. And did I mention the ongoing investigations and possible impeachment for his alliance with the Russians? But Mr. Continetti is right to point out the ongoing refusal of the "elites" to understand the forces that are agitating the working and middle class. Even after Hilary's defeat, they still don't seem to get it, and it is this Achilles Heal that Trump can exploit again. And as deeply flawed as he is, these flaws were known before he was elected in the first place, so by themselves they won't hurt him. Being an incumbent is also a difficult obstacle for any challenger to overcome. As much as I despise him, his defeat is not assured by any stretch. But there are two obstacles Trump faces: 1. He hasn't delivered on his promises. 2. The majority of voters despise him. Assuming he isn't impeached.

  82. In his corner though, are millions of deplorable who will vote him in because a tv star is far more important to them than a person with intelligence, who they see as above them.

  83. @Kingfish52 Thanks Kingfish 52 for your two obstacles faces. However you did not add, 3 will all americans believe the higher costs they pay for imported products are great because of Trump's tariffs 4 Will americans feel the Trump presidency will enhance the USA as world leader ? Canada says " we will not be kicked around. London has many anti Trump demonstrators . France government and Germany will not supported him Does not look to him as a leader! Mexico does not say it will pay for the wall 5 North Korea leader " loves him (so say Trump) Iran will back down because Trump is a great dealer(Look at Plaza hotel casinos etc) Good Luck Trump

  84. Good luck getting all those global voters qualified to vote for Trump. If there's one thing that Trumpies ain't, it's international in their vision--so unless global anti-elitism is a an infectious disease, I don't see his base as caring much what's going on in Poland, Turkey, Hungary, etc. Rather than a continuation of the anti-rational fad, I expect to see a turn back toward moderation at some point. Maybe 2020?

  85. Trump now loses to every top tier Democratic candidate in national polls of prospective voters. Yet the author is correct that we cannot assume today's polls will translate into a Democratic victory in November, 2020. Working against Trump's right-wing populist appeal, however, is Trump, himself. The polls clearly and rather consistently reveal the unprecedented revulsion that most Americans have for Trump. So while the world's flirtation with right-wing populism continues, it is not the world, but American voters who will render the verdict on Mr. Trump next November. One is heartened by this.

  86. What I thought would happen last election happened. No one believed me, but I just knew it. And I have a feeling it'll happen this time too.

  87. @Sue Please keep us posted.

  88. Anti-elite wave? Thanks. That explains why Bernie Sanders polls better with Trump voters than Elizabeth Warren, though both Bernie and Warren have similar goals.

  89. @DC Bernie Sanders has held his positions for years. Elizabeth Warren used to be a "traditional" Republican, and while she has numerous, interesting policy proposals, she was a Harvard professor for a long time. I know several die-hard Republicans who were quite interested in Sanders in 2016 and are interested in him again this time. So, while they might seem the same, in the eyes of many they clearly are not.

  90. Warren was a Republican over 20 years ago. She has been a Democrat a lot longer than Bernie Sanders.

  91. The Democrats need to figure out how to drop the collusion/obstruction issue. Trump has won that fight. He openly asked for and accepted help from Russia and openly obstructed the Muller investigation. So what? His grassroots base and the wealthy donors and benefactors of his policies are fine with both of those things. He will not be penalized for them. The only thing that matters is that Trump has tapped into a toxic reservoir of racism and anti-intellectualism that is sweeping the country and the world.

  92. We live in strange times when standard methods of analyzing political contests seem outdated. Thus it would be a mistake to dismiss Mr. Continetti's column as simply a piece of conservative wishful thinking. Trump will surely enjoy some of the advantages of incumbency, especially if the economy remains strong. The real question remains whether his selective use of evidence captures the important factors that will determine the outcome of the election. He admits that any predictions nearly eighteen months before the voters render their verdict are highly speculative. My real objection to his analysis, however, stems from his reliance on the voters choosing a candidate based on their ignorance of his real performance. He calls Trump a populist, implying that he is anti-elitist. But in most important respects the president follows policies that the economic elite favors. His tax bill did not favor the working class, and the same could be said of his efforts to gut the ACA. His promise to restore the coal industry has not prevented the demand for coal from continuing to fall. His foolhardy trade initiatives, aimed in large part at our allies, have hurt farmers while driving up consumer prices. His selection of judges who will oppose abortion might please the evangelical minority, but it will hurt poor women, whom any real populist would want to help. Economic growth is strong, but most of the benefits have accrued to the elite. Ignorance, I suppose, is bliss.

  93. So many of these so-called anti-elites are in fact the elite people they rail against! It amazes me that the people who vote for someone who isn’t at the top of town don’t realise that their candidate sits at the very top of the town! Trump is a billionaire - a long way away from the common man.

  94. @James Lee I agree I would argue that deregulation benefits elites. It's a way of socializing the costs to the rest of us to clean up their mess. Often times costing us a fortune legally because of harm done and then also for the actual work. One thing is true the main author is missing. Trump has been deeply unpopular even with a strong economy. He has only been strong with his base and his polling the entire time has matched that base. His tax cuts for those with capital were massive. And the tax cuts that no one noticed for the rest of us will expire. He also had a punitive tax on blue states to hurt the liberal majority. What's quite apparent isn't that Trump is a populist but that he is anti-liberal. Conservatives truly hate liberals for everything in the world and play the victim card just like their leader. You will see it constantly in the way they communicate and respond. They always paint themselves as victims, constantly.

  95. @Stephen W The biggest lie Trump ever told is that he is a billionaire. He is not a billionaire and that was his original reason for not showing his tax returns.

  96. All these examples of the success of foreign "populist" candidates. During the early twentieth century the world saw the rise of Communism, Fascism and National Socialism. Yet, through all the trials and travails experienced by the citizens of our own country during that time. the majority of Americans rejected those ideologies. Call it American Exceptionalism if you wish, but let's hope that today, the majority of Americans retain the ability to remain exceptional. And reject hate.

  97. "What unites these issues is the idea that elites insulate themselves from the costs of the policies they impose on others. " And what makes Trump unique is that not only does he insulate himself from the costs, he also finds ways to make a profit from his policies while managinh to convince the people he is stealing from that he has their back. He is a brilliant con man, but he is still a con man selling snake oil.

  98. Very perceptive article. It must be understood that nobody liked or likes Trump, not the Democrats, and, very importantly, not the Republicans. But the voters did and do. The politicians who listen to the voters needs and concerns instead of telling them, forcing upon them, what they want--those are the ones who will win. Democrat or Republican.

  99. @Farley Morris Um, no, the voters didn't like him. He only won because Republicans along with Russians made Hillary look as bad (okay, with some help from Hillary), and even then he couldn't win the popular vote. And if the voters still like him, why did the Republicans do so badly in '18 - they only increased in the Senate because the field was so imbalanced. But that said, the Democrats need to run someone who can make economics (especially middle-class economics) their centerpiece. Bleeding heart liberalism toward immigrants and gays is all fine and good, but in the words of Bill Clinton's campaign head, "it's the economy, stupid".

  100. There is one crucial difference between Campaign 2016 and Campaign 2020: Trump has to run on, and defend, his record, which is mediocre. If the Democrats can manage to avoid running the worst possible candidate (Biden in my view), they have no end of ammunition to use. Trump had both Houses of Congress for two years and passed one tax bill that benefited corporations and the wealthy, but not regular people. Still no wall. Still no health care plan to replace Obamacare. Vulnerable on North Korea, which rolled him in negotiations. Out of his depth on Iran - war possible. Was audibly laughed at by world leaders at the U.N. for his unbelievable boasting. The world leaders didn't believe it. Right now I see five Democrats who could probably beat Trump. I don't see that changing.

  101. @Vesuviano Trump has to go. Biden can beat Trump. I support Biden! PERIOD

  102. @Doon And what will you do if Biden is not the candidate? He's vulnerable on a number of points, and may well not survive the primaries. I personally do not like him and do not think he can necessarily beat Trump. He's vulnerable on his hypocrisy, his waffling, his support of the Iraq War, his support of corporations over labor, and his handling of Anita Hill in the Clarence Thomas hearings. He's also exactly the sort of establishment politician that tens of millions of voters rejected last time. What will you do if he's not the candidate?

  103. @Vesuviano Here's an opposing list to yours, one that many American's care a lot more about. GDP growth over 3% with anticipation of more Lowest unemployment rate in 50 years for all races, ethic groups and sexes. Deregulation = growth Energy independence Minimal inflation Biggest tax decrease in two generations Stock market at all time high Highest labor participation in history Increase in military spending and respect Highest increases in income for all races and sexes in 30 years

  104. MAGA is out! "Make Americans Work More Than Everybody Else Again" will ignite Donald Trump's base in 2020. In 2018, we witnessed three government shutdowns which the President Of The United States forced the government to shutdown insisting we build a wall on the Mexico - US boarder. The support for the wall is another example of the tragedy of the commons whereas the demand for undocumented workers in certain industries in the U.S. creates incentive for others to cross the boarder which has led to the increase in illegal residents in the United States. On the supply side, many Americans don’t know what to study in college, because no one knows what skills learned at 20 will be relevant at 40. The number of these somewhat not in demand citizens increases, not through chance but by definition diminishing incentives for this group to invest in developing additional skills in higher demand or outperforming undocumented workers in low skill work. Put another way, the fastest way Americans can exponentially reduce illegal border crossing is by outperforming undocumented workers in low skill industries. Americans outperforming all immigrants will discourage business owners from hiring other workers.

  105. Thank you Mr Continetti, for putting this is a context that some of us can get our head around and, with that information, try to do something about it going forward. By that somewhat obtuse statement I mean exactly this: people, pay attention to how you are coming off to 'the other side' when you are engaged in conversation. I could go on but that's really the point I wish to make - this article's title and subtitle should be internalized by anyone who thinks the upcoming election is worth fighting for.

  106. A hard right commentator is gifted with an opinion piece in the NYT, and an unusually high percentage of the comments agree with him and suggest that Trump will be re-elected. Why is this when no other stories elicit a like response? This is nothing but classic confirmation bias. Individuals click on stories that confirm what they want to hear. Those who do not like the message, and perhaps like me recognize the author’s name, stay away. I say relax. Poll after poll after poll confirms the fact that approximately 55% of the electorate will not vote for Trump no matter what. Obversely his support never exceeds 43%. Seventeen months is a very long time, particularly with the extreme volatility in evidence today, but in a rational world he is not going to win.

  107. But the polls in 2016 predicted that Hillary Clinton would win. I don't have faith in polls anymore. I'm deathly afraid that he will win again.

  108. @Chuck Burton In 2016, poll after poll after poll predicted Clinton in a landslide and here we are, relying on polls again to predict the next president. "In a rational world, he is not going to win," you write. That's true, but we're not in a rational world any longer, so all bets are off.

  109. @RJSteele People misread polls. There was no projection of a landslide. What happened was that one model (assuming each poll was statistically independent) predicted a >90% chance of Clinton victory - not a landslide, just high probability of getting 270 electoral votes. The problem was that the polls were NOT independent events - they all had the same systematic flaws - so the probability that several of them were wrong wasn't that low. Nate Silver's group did the best in this regard, predicting Clinton victory at ~80-85%, about the same odds as surviving a round of Russian Roulette. Obviously, sometimes when playing Russian Roulette, you lose.

  110. Why do the same pundits and newspapers say "Trump proves all the conventional wisdom doesn't apply anymore!" and then immediately turn around and cite conventional wisdom regarding the strength of the economy and the power of incumbency? A prosecutor got on television and practically begged congress to impeach this man for the obvious obstruction of justice he committed, and it didn't make a dent in his approval rating. But we're supposed to trust he'll be buoyed by the same factors that would help a normal president? As for the notion that Trump's support is rooted in anti-elitism, all we have to do is look at the examples provided by the author. The powerful elites they're so angry at are... poor, Mexican immigrants and poor, Muslim immigrants. And who are the downtrodden people who need to be protected by the vicious environmentalists? Energy companies.

  111. The candidate who will beat Trump will have to engage him directly and remind voters every day that Trump is nothing but a rich daddy's boy who has no idea what it is like to wake up every day and go to work, and has no concept of public service. Ask the voters how their Trump tax cut has worked out? Ask the voters if tariffs have helped their small businesses and farms prosper? Ask the voters if they have any idea what Trumps end game is with trade? Does Trump?

  112. No doubt I agree with this articles that Trump will be re-elected. However, I am confused when the author states that Trump is anti-elite. Trump has dismantled Health-Care, Consumer Protection Bureau, Student Loan Protections and many more which all destroys the poor but somehow the appearance is that he is anti-elite and pro-poor. Democrats, Democratic presidential challengers and the media should highlight these specific issues and unveil the true colors of Mr.Trump and GOP

  113. " continued economic recovery" -- sorry to bother you with some metrics here. I know, the issue is complicated by multiple methods of assessment ... This is, precisely, what the Orfal Office, and much of the electorate at large fails utterly to understand. What they do understand, and glom to, is "how to lie with statistics". The stats they like are those they assume. Those they don't like are just "alternative facts". The US is, by n large, an undereducated society, the undereducated now dead set against the overeducated. When it comes to policy, undereducated gets us, i'm afraid, nowhere. Overeducated may not be right every time (i'd never claim it is), but at least, it has some *arguable* purchase on how issues at hand might, in an ideal scenario, be dealt with, ameliorated. When you find, in a debate, the other side has no substantiate-able claims, but only gut feelings, how can the debate go forward? It "goes forward" thanks to the undereducated turning up at the polls in greater numbers than thinking americans.

  114. Quoting from the last paragraph: "What unites these issues is the idea that elites insulate themselves from the costs of the policies they impose on others". A statement that sounds like the perfect definition of Mr.Trump and his behavior ...

  115. To suggest that Trump is anti-elitist, when in fact he and his party have produced huge tax cuts for the rich, fought universal health care, and done nothing to promote the betterment of the common man is hardly the actions of an a person opposed to elitism. Trump and the GOP are the elite, and they will lose badly in 2020 if the Democrats stand up for the average person and expose Trump to be the phony that he is. Turn out will be everything in 2020, and I believe the complacency of 2016 will be replaced by a genuine concern for the future of America with resulting record turnouts for the Democrats.

  116. @kevin cummins I hope you are right!

  117. Unchecked immigration will cause a huge increase in the cost of social services. Look at California where more than half of new immigrants receive state assistance. Unchecked immigration from Muslim countries in particular leads to greater danger of mass terrorism since, as Tom Friedman of the NY Times has observed, most terrorists these days are Muslim. Climate change provisions will cause big fall offs in employment for workers. Look at the huge unemployment of coal miners in West Virginia and the poverty of upstate New York that could be alleviated by fracking. None of these problems affect the one percent that are happy in their gated estates. Perhaps progressives are right on all these issues but we cannot expect the great masses of people to bear the associated burdens while the rich one percent make no sacrifices at all. That is what drives the popular support for Trump.

  118. @Alex "Perhaps progressives are right on all these issues but we cannot expect the great masses of people to bear the associated burdens while the rich one percent make no sacrifices at all. That is what drives the popular support for Trump." I fail to see the logic of your argument when it's Trump who has increased government debt by 1 trillion dollars to fund tax cuts for the wealthy and extremely wealthy. This money would have been better spent on programs that help and support the majority of citizens who will bear the cost of this give-away to the rich.

  119. @Alex Dang, mistruths (lies) all over the place. Undocumented immigrants, including DACA holders, are ineligible to receive most federal public benefits, including means-tested benefits such as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, sometimes referred to as food stamps), regular Medicaid, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF). The most and largest terrorist attacks are White Cristian American Men. Easily more that Muslims. Green energy production employs as many as the Gas 'n Oil, and coal COMBINED. The growing employment trend is to Green energy. Not dead Dino's. There is no greater enabler of rich 1% and corp. welfare that Trump and his administration. If these lies are what Trumpers believe; they really are duped rubes. I believe grifters and cons call them Marks.

  120. @Alex You seem to be promoting coal and fracking yourself. No. The answer lies in creating jobs in green technology. No reason that can't be done in WV or upstate NY. We actually need to expand those green technologies in middle America, where there is room to build.

  121. Every step of Trumps journey to the White house was marked by people sure that he got this far but he will fail at the next judgement. It never happened. He won every time. Now we are saying the same old thing again. It is wishful thinking. If we really want Trump out we need to get fair voting machines. We really do not understand just how flawed our voting system is. It is run by changable software and every voter gives his vote to a programmer who does what he/she wants with it. Paper ballots are never looked at but are simpley read by another machiene with the same flaws. It is a beatable system.

  122. Warning Trump can win re-election. He’s brilliant (yes, brilliant) at maintaining his base and discouraging opposition from turning out and voting for his main opponent. He hasn't even begun to tear down his opposition, let alone the destructive force of Bernie's supporters when he doesn't get the nomination.. Don’t take his unpopularity for granted. 2020 is going to be brutal.

  123. @Brad I agree, it will be brutal. Hopefully, Bernie supporters have learned their lesson. Just because YOUR particular choice is not nominated, you do NOT stay home or protest vote.

  124. @Brad Suggestions?

  125. "In the past century the public has booted a party from the White House after a single term just once. And Jimmy Carter’s presidency was plagued by foreign policy setbacks and stagflation." Has the author forgotten the presidency of George H.W. Bush, who was booted out of office, indeed, after a single term?

  126. George Bush term is a continuation of Reagan. So that's a total of 3 terms for GOP.

  127. Trump is the ultimate insider. And while he peddles in various outrages, he continues to line the pockets of the billionaire class, most notably his own clan. More people are seeing through this duplicity now than in 2016, I believe. Meanwhile, the democrats are energized far more than in 2016. I don't see a repeat.

  128. Exactly correct. Warren is an example. She is proposing massive overhauls in virtually everything. I want to vote for a Democrat, but I don't want to give free tuition to people who made foolish choices. I don't want medicare for all--I want Obamacare. I don't want to give up my gun. I support the Hyde Amendment and a woman's right to choose. I don't want to break up Amazon--I love Amazon. All that the progressives are doing is giving voters things to vote AGAINST. Trump will win.

  129. @Travelers actually quite a few of us want those things. We're looking at other countries that adopted these changes - it seems to have worked for them. We need to invest in our people now. Set aside whether or not an individual deserves it because society as a whole is improved when we invest in ourselves.

  130. @JRDN Still not getting the point. All of these radical changes are only preaching to the choir. Yet within them are things that some people even in the choir will not support. And that will be enough to turn some people to voting for Trump. College tuition costs: paying off foolish loans people took out to attend graduate school (the bulk of money owed) or for-profit schools. People spent wildly and foolishly. 30 years I was working TWO jobs so my kids could go to college, and they worked at summer jobs (and had to save half of their earnings). If Warren is going to reimburse people for foolish choices then I, and all other parents over the past 50 years, should likewise be reimbursed for what we worked and saved and paid for. Where does it end? With interest, I estimate that for my children the government would, under Warren's plan, owe me about $100,000. And would owe that to millions of people who made smart choices but will want the government to pay for their college too. Still like her plan? If you do, dig VERY deep into your pockets.....for the rest of your life.

  131. Let me see if I have this straight. "The people", frustrated by "the elites" failing to take action on climate change, have responded by finding "their own solutions" -- electing climate change deniers whose stated aim is to bring back coal. "The people", frustrated by growing inequality, have elected to vote for candidates who dole out tax cuts for the rich and slash workers' rights and healthcare. "The people", afraid of terrorists, elect candidates who are willing to ignore or even encourage militant white nationalism while white nationalists commit mass killings around the world. Is that about right?

  132. Trump is applying for the job of being our first dictator with AG Barr is campaign manager and protector. If the country wants a dictator they may not know what living in a police state is like. AG Barr could have facial recognition technology and access to complete data on everyone highlighting dissidents much like China, North Korea and Russia do. Trump admires dictators because he wants to rule America as one he is telling us that every day we are forewarned it can happen here . Trump is talking about staying in office after 2024 by "popular demand" the Mad King is ready to take over and AG Barr is hand is ready to help him rule with an Iron Republican fist.

  133. Trump's Achilles heel continues to be his tax returns. If they surface in the next 12 months, that whooshing sound will be the air rushing out of the Con Don's personal mythology.

  134. @The Whip No one outside the bubble cares about his tax returns. Trust me.

  135. The latest Fox News poll shows Bernie Sanders beating Trump nationally by 9%. The latest Daily Beast poll shows Sanders beating Trump nationally by 12%. When running against Sanders, Trump becomes a member of the elite establishment, a selfish member of the billionaire class, the enemy of working people. The biggest anti-elite wave is firmly and powerfully supporting Sanders. The mainstream news media just can't face it.

  136. @Joe You are referring to the same polls that were completely wrong the last time

  137. @Shehzad The polls were wrong about Hillary, not Bernie. Hillary conceded the anti-elite and populist vote to Trump. He took that gift and rode that wave to victory over her. He would not have been able to pretend to be a populist when facing a real populist.

  138. @Joe Yep, and Joe does does just as good as Bernie, right Joe?

  139. If things are so great, why are they begging the Fed to cut rates?

  140. I think it is more of an anti-democratic surge, now. That to me, is the danger of a Trump dictatorship, today. I am reminded of the "Democracy" song of Leonard Cohen. He prophetically sang, "Democracy is coming to the USA in 1992. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Now, with Trump, I am hoping for a new democratic wave. And I hope that Democrats will rally to the words of "Democracy." But I fear that Democratic arguments are easily forgotten, as Trump continues to dominate the daily media, cycle. Perhaps Democrats can sing this song, again and again: "Sail on, sail on, O Mighty Ship of State ... Democracy is coming to the USA..." -----------------------------------------------

  141. I did not vote for Donald Trump in 2016, but I am convinced Trump is going to win re-election for the following six reasons: 1) He is the incumbent; 2) He starts with 260 electoral votes--the states won by Romney plus Ohio, Florida, and Iowa--the Democrat literally needs to run the table to win; 3) Most of the 4 percent that voted for Gary Johnson and Evan McMullin will come home to the Republican Party; 4) Trump is the ultimate Saleman/Performer--all the Dems are several orders of magnitude less entertaining than him; 5) The economy is the best since--well probably ever--but pick your time mark; 6) During the primaries the Democrats will tear each other apart and make fools of themselves (I know Trump makes a "fool" of himself every day, but there is method to his madness.) Mr. Continetti offers a seventh reason, Trump will benefit from the global populist revolution (I know, I know Trump doesn't deserve to be called a populist, but apparently the masses disagree.)

  142. @Charles 2) Romney won 206 electoral votes, not 260. Even winning Ohio, Florida and Iowa would not have been sufficient for him. 3) Johnson and McMullin voters are less, not more likely to select Trump this time. Basically Republican in nature, they were already uncomfortable with the Walking Disaster before he was elected. Now they are appalled. 6) the Democrats are unified in their opposition. Your assertion that they will tear themselves apart. 5) You are amnesiac. The rate of improvement in the economy after the Bush catastrophe was much better under Obama than it is now and all signs are that a recession is gathering force. 1) you did indeed vote for Trump in 2016 and will do so again in 2020. All disinformation aside.

  143. @Chuck Burton Yes, Romney won 206 + 29 (FL) + 18 (OH) + 6 (IA) = 259. I did not say it, but Trump will also win the 2CD of Maine for 1 more, which equals 260. Yes, it is not enough, but the Democrat will have to run the table. He or she will have to win in Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, where Trump won, and hold on in Minnesota, Virginia, Colorado, Nevada, and New Hampshire. It can be done, but I think the odds favor Trump. I voted for Gary Johnson. I would have voted for McMullin, but he was not on the ballot in Michigan, where I lived at the time. You see I have pretty good insight into where the erstwhile Never-Trumpers stand, because I am one. Yes, Trump is appalling, but even the most ardent Never-Trumpers were more appalled by the treatment of Judge Kavanaugh (read Bret Stephens, if you don't believe me). I hope we have a real third alternative this time, like Howard Schulz, but it is unlikely. As for the economy, we have had slightly better employment numbers over 50 years ago, but never when women and minorities were this fully participating in the workforce. Growth of GDP under Trump has been much more robust than under Obama. You don't have to credit Trump, but you cannot deny the numbers. I am not omniscient, but if the Democrats all play nice with one another and don't drive one another to ridiculous left-wing positions, I will be surprised.

  144. You haven't seen nothing yet. Our resolute AG has only just begun to get to the real truth. As the real investigation of the hoax investigation picks up steam -- unraveling and draining the establishment swamp -- it will clinch more independents like me, just in time to re-elect Trump by a landslide in 2020. Just watch!

  145. You seem very independent.

  146. Should we feel ashamed for being educated? Since Trump's base seems to be composed primarily of white males, with no or some college, in the age bracket of 45-65+, shall we apologize for having taken the initiative to study hard, get good grades, and go on to finish college? Are we supposed to ignore our fears that there has been a huge rise of white supremacists in our country, encouraged by Trump's racism and xenophobia, and fired up by his constant attacks on nonwhites and immigrants? "What unites these issues is the idea that elites insulate themselves from the costs of the policies they impose on others." The "costs" of NOT having policies in place to address global warming are, of course, ever increasing severe weather patterns (tornadoes, thunder and hail storms, excessive precipitation, increasing numbers of polar vortex events, high winds and wildfires). Melting glaciers means higher sea levels, so flooding will become the norm, along with land erosion on the coasts and on riversides. I could go on, but I'm afraid that I've already lost Trump supporters, who apparently are only interested in how many people have come across the border. I wonder if they know that Mexico is home to millions of undocumented AMERICANS? Probably not.

  147. Really. Why just we cannot go back to the good old days where we work for nothing , and be proud of the products we make . you know, take pride in your work , and that should be enough. Sure I can't support my family, but I take so pride in the ballet shoes I produce, but you know what,? I don't do it to make a living, I do it to support ballerinas. By the way, my second kid just died. So sad.

  148. The author is right, in that there is a definite global rebellion against neoliberal, global capitalism, which has enriched the few at the expense of the many. This is such a real problem that it was on the agenda at Davos this year - the summit of the elites. What he doesn't mention here is results of elections in some European countries where candidates who are on the left - Democratic socialists and Greens - have made real headway. We have a chance to do that here, as two of the Democratic candidates are refusing to take corporate/1% campaign donations and are proposing solutions that will help correct the vast income inequality now extant.

  149. Interesting arguments, but hardly convincing. The Republicans took a shellacking in 2018. That doesn't fit your description. And Trump couldn't save the Republicans in either Montana or Arizona, and he mostly trotted himself out in safe N Dakota, Indiana and Missouri. Trump is still underwater in every poll out there and even Mr. Continetti all but admits that the economy is likely to at least soften. My guess is that even a softening economy will put him in great jeopardy. Let's face it, the only way Trump is likely to win in 2020 is the same way he did in '16, by making the Democrat looking as bad as him. That may be possible, but this time the country is aware of that trick, so hopefully this one trick pony is going down.

  150. @BruceS That last midterm wasn't a "shellacking." The "shellacking" occurred in Obama's midterm. That was the worst midterm loss since WWII. Trump actually did much better than Obama.

  151. @AACNY Nope. Not even close. This was the biggest landslide victory in a midterm. You can't have your own set of facts because there is reality.

  152. Interesting that growing income inequality is not mentioned among the reasons for the appeal of Trump and other nationalists throughout the West. Fear of terrorism and immigration certainly belong on the list. But it seems fairly well established that voter fury stems in large measure from working and middle class families seeing their communities, standard of living, and children's opportunities erode, all while our political economy steadily and unrelentingly shifts money to the most affluent. Elites from both parties spent decades creating this wealth transfer system - there's plenty of shared blame to go around. But acknowledging this obvious fact might lead to consequences the political right finds uncomfortable. Instead, the author ascribes anti-elite anger to . . . climate change mitigation?

  153. He barely won in 2016, in fact he lost the popular vote. Unless he gets Russia to hack voting machines on his behalf, I find it hard to believe he will get re-elected. However I’m totally down with his supporters staying in that Fox News bubble all day and believing he will be back for another 4 years.

  154. "What unites these issues is the idea that elites insulate themselves from the costs of the policies they impose on others." A good example is Mr. Macron in France and he learned the hard way when the Yellow Vests were more concerned with surviving gasoline prices going up today than in saving the environment for the future. Anti-Trump feelings as expressed in organs of the the elite, such as this newspaper, are sometimes so filled with venom and hate for Trumpism that they fail to recognize that there are many who feel the same way about those who express these feelings, i.e. the perceived elite (perceived!!). But they are invisible or belittled or treated with disdain. But those people are out there and they have a lot of anger. They will vote Trump regardless of NYT op-eds and the numerous anti-Trump comments.

  155. Senator Warren has noted that she’s not running against Trump, but for the American people. This is the winning approach. Notwithstanding the low unemployment, the fact is that while working two jobs American families are barely making it. Are families better off today than they were in 2018? No! A resounding no! How many people in manufacturing have lost their jobs. Are farmers not hurting as the result of his tempestuous, visceral tariff wars ? Do they want to send their children to die in a made up war against Iran invented by Netanyahu? No! Trump still running a “lack her up” campaign; a “deport millions of immigrants”campaign, neither of which provide healthcare nor fair wages. Trump can be defeated if Democrats run a progressive people’s campaign, not the traditional “CENTRIST” campaign pundits and their billionaire donor patrons recommend.

  156. A few things to keep in mind here: 1) Donald Trump lost the election in 2016 by about 3 million votes. He's not the democratically elected President of the US. He's the US electoral college winner of 2016. Anti-Trump, yes. Anti-elitist, no. 2) If the anti-elitist (anti-Democratic) movement is so strong, why did Democrats win the 2018 midterms so resoundingly in the House of Representatives? 3) There was significant interference in the 2016 election by the Russian GRU. I don't think this counts as a homegrown American anti-elitist bunch. Anti-US, anti-Western Democracy, yes. Anti-elitist, nyet. 4) There was significant voter suppression throughout many red states in the election due to a vast array of (uncharged) criminal offenses. Voter poll purges, reduction of times to vote, unreasonable requirements on IDs, misinformation about election times, shutting down of polling places, etc. The Republican Party's treasured IP. Anti-democratic process, yes. Anti-elitist, not by a long shot.

  157. @Gavin Bowlby "A few things to keep in mind here..." Welcome to the New World Order.

  158. @Gavin Bowlby Oh geez, boring! You think people want FACTS? Don't be ridiculous.

  159. I'd rather think of Mr. Trump in a micro context, not a macro one, as his mind is pretty much fixated on his nose.

  160. And yet you keep asking what more Elizabeth Warren needs while the current president is embroiled in countless investigation and actively works to dismantle our democracy on a daily basis. Stop giving this person legitimacy.

  161. Mr. Continetti, of the conservative Washington Free Beacon, do you think that using the "e" word—elite— Doesn't apply to many "conservatives", especially business conservatives and particularly evangelicals as they strut around? And Mr. Trump of course has been a 4+ elitist all his life, despite his "everyday-man" con for his campaign. [Yes, there is a long world-wide history of such tactics.]

  162. @srwdm I agree entirely. Thanks for pointing out the hypocrisy and deceit in Mr. Continetti's misleading opinion piece. Hypocrisy and deceit are the defining features of today's GOP and it's complicit water-carriers.

  163. Agreed. This is one reason why the Dems lost in 2016. And they, apparently, didn't learn.

  164. @TommyTuna But the Democrats won the popular vote and trump won the Presidency with a mere technicality. Those are the facts.

  165. Donald was right about one thing. In polls, people don't always tell the truth. People will vote for Donald but they won't admit it. Like Tom Bradley. The only thing that will beat Donald is the continued dismantling of his persona, his aura. What people like about Trump is not true. Showing the flaws in the facade may convince people that Donald is a fraud. It's not the way to bet, but there's a chance.

  166. @Occupy Government You assert that people lie to pollsters and don’t want to admit that they support Trump. I have heard this argument before, but have never seen a scintilla of evidence to back it up. As far as I am concerned it is nothing but wishful thinking.

  167. @Occupy Government His supporters know he is a fraud but they prefer a fraud over other options

  168. Then how do you explain Hillary missing the 85 percent sure thing field goal in 2016? The polls had her wining easily. What happened?

  169. Keep in mind (1) Donnie lost the popular vote;(2) Comey threw the election the Friday before election day and (3) when it comes to voter remorse, the change is all in one direction: you don't see or hear of people who voted for Hillary now saying they wish they had voted for Donnie but there are a significant number of people who voted for Trump expressing remorse. Look, even some on Fox "News" are defecting as Donnie's behavior becomes more and more bizarre. This might be a landslide election similar to 1964--a real GOP bloodbath.

  170. @Jay BeeWis Why would Hillary’s voters regret their vote when she didn’t win. Makes little sense.

  171. I think he has a better-than-even chance of winning. Fortunately, I gave up my US citizenship earlier this year, so now I feel a little less sick knowing that he is (and might be for another few years) the putative leader of a once-great country.

  172. @Alex "once-great country", I think only in its own opinion. Forget about the paper Constitution, Bill of Rights, etc., etc. By any objective standards, the US has been a very "mixed bag" -- institutionalized slavery, decimation of indigenous people (admittedly Australia shares here), coupled with occasional economic opportunity for migrants, when they appeared on the scene under the "right" economic conditions. The US has always gone too easy on savvy capitalists ... just look at the current situation!

  173. @Alex On what basis?

  174. @Alex LOL. You think anywhere on earth is safe now? Silly.

  175. If you are going to look at past elections, don't forget that only one president who was elected without winning the popular vote was able to win a second term. That was George W. Bush, and he had a war to help him. Trump has never had an approval rating of 50% or higher. While Trump has juiced the economy with tax cuts for the rich, his policies have done nothing to improve conditions for the average working person or the middle class. Health care is still a mess, and Trump has not offered a replacement for the ACA. On his key agenda point, immigration, Trump has not found a solution, and there is only so much blame that he can put on the Democrats and sanctuary cities before it will become obvious that he wasted too much energy on his big beautiful wall and not enough on a comprehensive immigration policy. The only area where Trump can claim sizable success is in his appointments to the judiciary. Trump may still win if the Democrats put forward a weak candidate, but he has too many flaws and weaknesses to be considered an odds on favorite. If he wins again, it will be a squeaker.

  176. A thesis that relies on so much 'special pleading' is a bit suspect. None of the 5 presidents between Eisenhower and Reagan filled out a full 8 year term. LBJ (and Truman) would have lost if he opted to run. Bill Clinton won with a paltry 48% of the popular vote in 96' and Geo. Bush II squeaked by with 50.7% in 04' only with the help of Mohamed Atta. Castigating environmentalists as ivory tower "elites" is a right wing slur, it doesn't make them so. The 'elites' are the Koch Bros. and big oil with their multi-billion dollar P.R. campaigns. Nor does widespread opposition to climate change mitigation policies among the corpulent denizens of the nation's exurbs make such policies wrong. Alas, climate change is coming for all of us. The real deal is that there is no opinion survey thus far that shows Trump more popular than unpopular. Even Truman, a man with history's lowest approval rating, had moments when he shined. That should tell you something. In a highly polarized political environment I don't want to be the candidate that 53% of the electorate has consistently hated for the better part of three years.

  177. Arguing about who is and who is not the leader loved by the elites is silly. Democrats, Republicans and even so-called Populists and Disruptors serve an elite establishment of one sort or another and are themselves as candidates and officer holder pretty darn elite too. Trump, Bush 1 and Bush 2, and Kennedy were born ELITE and certainly all were backed by elites. Carter and Reagan and Clinton were more hardscrabble in their roots but make no mistake they were accomplished persons , self-made elite who served and were supported by elite interests too. The elite epithet rings hollow as a slur of one party opposite the other.

  178. @Gary F.S. Keep writing, dude.

  179. "What unites these issues is the idea that elites insulate themselves from the costs of the policies they impose on others."....When Obama left office he handed Trump a budget deficit of about $540 billion dollars. This fiscal year the budget deficit is estimated to be around $ 1000 billion dollars. Who is it that insulates themselves from the costs of the policies they impose on others? Facts matter.

  180. @W.A. Spitzer. The increased budget deficit does not effect a person’s daily life. It is an abstract concept to most people. Voters care about the policies that effect them now, today - things they can see with their own eyes and things that effect their pocketbooks. So yes, elites like yourself, do insulate themselves.

  181. @W.A. Spitzer Bush left behind a $1.1 TRILLION deficit.

  182. You mean a trillion?

  183. Elizabeth Warren has proposed concrete policies that address the issues that Trump is exploiting. Trump's base appears unable to hear or understand how her policies will work in their favor. Clearly, better communication is required to express empathy and understanding of the issues motivating Trump supporters and then, showing how each policy proposal addresses them.

  184. @Joann I like Elizabeth Warren a lot. I think she has more know how about how to get things done than anyone running. People are just beginning to pay attention to her. Her message is starting to resonate. Her megaphone isn't nearly as loud as Trump's. I hope it gets through in time.

  185. You can’t communicate with someone who isn’t listening and can’t recognize truth from fiction. You can only work on Independent voters and get lazy Dems off their votes and to the polls.

  186. Elizabeth Warren is to ugly to be President. Sorry to be so harsh but that's the reality of the matter.

  187. The economic crash will be here in the fall of 2019, they will not be able to stave it off until after the election. Bush and his minions tried the same thing it didnt work either and neither will it work for Trump.

  188. @DG One would hate to bet against one's own country, but if a crash comes, it could not be worse that a Trump presidency.

  189. Trump could not have won by less. So a Democrat who goes hard in the key states that Hillary barely lost could win. Trump does have the advantage of incumbency, although, as has been pointed out elsewhere in the comments, there is a bit of an inconsistency in treating Trump as a sui generis candidate and then applying the conventional wisdom about incumbency and a strong, or at least non-recessionary, economy. The Trump base is still mostly fiercely loyal, because even though he hasn't built the Wall (and never will), nor done much of anything of substance except tax cuts for the rich, he continues to excel every day in outraging liberals on Twitter. Maybe anti-immigrant dissenters of the likes of Ann Coulter will make some of his voters stay home; maybe not. For the Dems, party unity and turnout will be central. A "moderate" candidate may not appeal enough to the "socialist" wing, and vice versa. A divisive primary campaign could be terminally damaging. So Trump may not win. But then again he may - in which case he can run again in 2024 after getting cleared by his Supreme Court.

  190. All of this is true, but children are being traumatized at the border, families who have lived long term in the US are being split apart, there is an attack on women's rights that has not been seen in a generation, hate crimes are way up and so are mass shootings. Farmers are hurting and depending on subsidies to carry them through and some may have lost markets long term, corporations that depend on trade are in danger of cutting back and cutting workers, and asylum seekers are way UP. The Great Depression was preceded by a trade war. Maybe Trump is depending on the other side knowing that, or maybe he will push the envelope too far.

  191. If elites are those who "insulate themselves from the costs of the policies they impose on others," then Tom Riddle here is the leader of the pack. He's all about lining his pockets while others suffer. In fact, he brags about making people suffer. He actively calls on people to harm one another. And he's delighted when they do it! He might seem anti-elite because he is proudly anti-education and prefers loyalty over competence. But he loves hobnobbing with royals and absolutely has his in-group of global elites.

  192. Will Americans especially in crucial swing states finally grow tired of this Trump chaos and vote him out? We won’t know until the 2020 November election.

  193. @Garry What chaos? Economy is humming, people are working, and everyone left of center is unhappy. Go figure.

  194. @Bruce Do you farm? Do you work retail? (Which by the way is the largest single job category: retail sales worker.)

  195. @Bruce Wages are still flat. Inflation is still above wage growth. Record farm bankruptcy's. Record retail stores closing. Highest trade imbalance ever. Record National Debt, cresting $22 trillion. Corp./manuf. still closing and moving out. 63% of 'merican's can't come up with $1000. 48% can't find $400. 4 in 10 jobs are min. wage. Min. Wage sets Gov. record for not being raised in over 10yrs. Shall we go on? Shall we talk about the record medical bankruptcies? How about the record student loan debt. Total US household debt soars to record above $13 trillion. Credit card debt had the second largest increase of $26 billion to a total of $834 billion. This idea of a *humming economy* is a LIE~! The top 10% own 85% of all stocks. The bottom 80% own 6%. But Right-wingers think everything is fine. Except for the majority it isn't. But they will spite their on children to pwn the libs. Go figure.

  196. Just like they behave watching sporting events. When the multi-millionaires on "their team" are winning, the "fans" think they themselves are winning.

  197. It's not an international anti-elite movement. It's an anti-intelligence movement. Emotive souls making emotional decisions based upon...nothing one could call reasonably deliberation.

  198. Exactly. The "elites" they are against are those smarty pants scientists who know what's good for everybody and make them feel guilty about being shameless consumers.

  199. No, it's actually a common sense movement. @HoodooVoodooBlood

  200. Nixon won every state except Massachusetts in 1972, and he was gone two years later. Not too hard to imagine history repeating itself. He is too dependent on the Russians not releasing compromising information on him. They may not like having malware planted in their nation's power grid, and look for a way to get him out of office quickly.

  201. Globally, populism may still be ascendant, but Trump isn't a populist -- he just plays one on TV. Populism (in the modern sense of the term) combines nationalist sentiment and social conservatism with real, tangible, material assistance for citizens facing economic challenges. With regard to that aspect of populism, Trump has done literally nothing -- no infrastructure jobs, no real tax relief for the 99%, no plans to shore up Social Security or Medicare (let alone Obamacare) -- nothing. And this is why I suspect that a good number of his supporters who aren't at least upper middle class are beginning to realize they've been had. Even if they're afraid to say so in their social milieu, they won't be voting for him again.

  202. The people that voted for Trump in 2016 don't give a hoot about political labels: elitist, populist, etc. Trump won because he tapped into a deep reservoir of distrust of a political system that was no longer helping the blue-collar, middle-class people. They felt abandoned. Their pocketbook was worse, not better, after the Great Recession. Trump blamed their circumstances on their favorite bogeymen: immigrants stealing our jobs, government takeover of healthcare, etc. None of which were true, but Trump channeled their anger. Brilliant strategy. If Trump wins again, it will be because they're still angry about the same things, and Trump can claim that he's trying to fix them -- the wall, tariffs, etc. But he can't because Democrats are obstructing him. Tellingly, Trump hasn't improved their individual economic circumstances much, despite aggregate statistics like GDP and DJIA. If Trump wins again, it's because he'll be the only politician listening to and speaking to the ongoing pain of the American middle class, whether it's fixable or not.

  203. You mean it's a little like wealthy Democratic politicians telling their supporters they will raise taxes on the wealthy, increase support for public programs, etc. and then blame their inability to do so on the Republicans? But Democratic party voters are far too smart to get played that way, of course.

  204. @Ken L I've heard many of the Democratic candidates speak. Most, maybe even all are "listening to and speaking to the ongoing pain of the American middle class": So you are 99% wrong about that. The difference is that these candidates are generally telling the truth about the situation whereas Trump is lying. His supporters prefer his lies because it shifts blame to others they are inclined to dislike or hate.

  205. Don’t forget the Farmers, those whose bean market will h China has been decimated by Trump Tariffs! He’s has to bail them out with twelve billion dollars! How do you think they feel about Trump’s trade war?!

  206. The international "anti-elite" movement is pushed and supported - hard - by Putin. As was Trump. Don't forget that.

  207. @Carol Yup. Pretty much a pro-oligarch, one-tenth of one percent party.

  208. Ha! @Carol

  209. It's not the people wearing the hats who should be happy, it's the people who import the hats. If he dealt in facts, the one thing the president could point to that has actually been benficial is the stock market. But I wonder how many angry coal miners, steelworkers and farmers have substantial investment portfolios.

  210. "Only two of the nine presidents up for re-election since World War II have lost." You might add that both were honorable and decent men, and were recognized as such even by their political opponents. If we're talking about odds, I think I will go with the polls rather than statistics from the past.

  211. An "anti-elite surge" led by millionaires and state-sponsored mafiosi... Yes, authoritarians are having a moment in the sun, but I would argue it has more to do with unfocussed panic over generalized helplessness in the face of global catastrophe, at least as much as economic anxieties or resentment over so-called "elites." The anti-elitist narrative seems like a political canard, a facile dividing line all too eagerly embraced by the media. If we survive the next couple of decades, let's check back and see how well that cliche ages.

  212. @Joe S. The thing is, anti-elitism will always be a valid argument as long as the corporate media leans so hard to the left, and either ignores or misrepresents the views of conservatives. People don't like being lied about and demogogued by those with political and economic power over them.

  213. @Chris What conservatives? I see an administration hell bent on destroying US credit and credibility to the advantage of only themselves.

  214. @Chris Hello Chris! The largest, most viewed "corporate media" in USA is Fox! And yes, Fox corporate media happily lies and supports demogoguery. But, oddly.... many people buy into it. Why is that? Sorry but the answers are not simple. The real answers to the current USA nightmare are complex, not the simple- minded stuff you prefer, which Charlatans like Trump can deceive many people with!

  215. To predict the outcome of the 2020 election answer two questions: Is there any reason why everyone who voted for thump the first time would not do so again? (note "those who voted for him the first time", not whether You see a reason to not vote for him) Will everyone (and more) who voted for Hillary in 2016 come out and vote for whoever wins the Dem primary? A third question could be: Is there any reason to vote against Trump in 2020 that did not exist in 2016?

  216. @Alec Dacyczyn A few of the Trump voters who voted in 2016 who have been hurt by tariffs, burned by broken promises may sit this one out. That's all we need. The loss of a few thousand voters here and there and a high turnout for Democrats might make this one a squeaker in the other direction.

  217. The Democrats need to do three things: 1) Start impeachment proceedings against Trump without further delay or equivocation 2) Unite on one candidate for President as quickly as possible 30 After uniting on that candidate, campaign nonstop to turn the Senate Democratic in 2020.

  218. @alank They don’t have to “unite on one candidate as quickly as possible“ they should have a proper debate of ideas and a well fought primary election. This way the candidate will be primed and ready for the general elections. We tried the uniting behind the old bag who has been waiting their turn and ended up with the horror show we are living through. If anything should be done differently from what is going on - good people should stop watching media nonsense about who is polling how now. The only thing that matters should be issues and candidates stands on them. All the jibber jabber about polls is worse than predicting where the stock market will be in a year, or what the GDP will be in 18months and other fact free, research free garbage peddled by lazy journalists looking for ratings and quick money. Time to sober up and love country and the Constitution.

  219. @alank Your points # 2 and 3 are great. But #1 is silly. Impeachment is a big nothingburger (except for making folks like you feel righteous), will waste time, accomplish naught. Hoping I dont have to explain this further ...(i.e. Senate will of course reject the impeachment pronto, thus Trump will announce he's "exonerated" once more, and this time even "more greatly" ...he'll say. And so on...

  220. All politics is local. Trump has finally made women of all colors and social status realize how fragile their hard fought staus is in the market place and in their control of their own bodies. Their participation and voting Democratic in 2018 and in 2020 will be the downfall of Trump. The global anti-elite surge did not help Trump in 2018 when the election was really about him and it will not help him in 2020. He will not be running against HRC this time.

  221. Here's what trump is up against. After George Bush's win in 1988, the republicans have won the popular vote for President one time. Yes, that's right one time in 30 years. The Democrats are not going to take this election lightly and will do everything in their power to take back WI, MI, and PA. FL too.

  222. Almost invariably, when I see the term "elites" used in an opinion piece, I know there will shortly be a red herring showing up on the kitchen floor. In a political sense, the term "elite" is typically used to sell a highly improbable conspiracy by those who lack the intellectual honesty to make a truly valid case for their point of view. The term is well beyond tiresome. There may indeed be a growing global anti-"elite" (a.k.a. ultra-right nationalist) movement. I'm sure one can hear all about it any day of the week on the Rush Limbaugh show. The entire affair is likely exceeding Putin's expectations. The thing is, though, only U.S. citizens can vote here. Not Hungarians, not Poles, not Italians, not Brexiters, not the AfD. So, where are these pro-Trump, anti-"elite" voters coming from? Did any of them vote Democratic in 2016/2018? I'll tell you where they are coming from: Trump's ever-shrinking 2016 base. Like most Americans, if I ever do think about the global-"elites", it's the Trump's that come to mind.

  223. As a Trump voter/supporter (and former Obama voter), I find it funny that 3 years after the election, progressives are still trying to understand why Trump was elected.

  224. The Rise of the Know Nothings is a global phenomenon. I don’t know if it’s a reaction against the ravages of globalism, income-disparity-fueled rage against the “elites,” or something else, but it doesn’t bode well for us as humans. We need some divine, or alien intervention to stop this madness soon. Maybe getting rid of Fox News and its global affiliates would help, too.

  225. Maybe it is better to let Trump win. If he feels he is losing, he might try something desparate to rally the country behind him. After his reelection, he will loose steam. After all, then he has less to fear.

  226. The vote that still counts at the end is still the Electoral College, right? Your popular vote is more of a non-binding popularity contest, which Hillary won last time. Correct? If so, is it likely to happen again?

  227. @MKS I believe I read that there has to be an 8 or 9 % increase in democratic votes to overcome the gerrymandering and win the electoral college. I believe we will do it this time.

  228. [[A global anti-elite surge improves the president’s chance of victory.]] An "anti-elite" surge will help a guy who claims to be a billionaire?

  229. Trump has not picked up any supporters since his election. On the other hand, he has infuriated everyone else, including Democrats who disliked Hilary Clinton enough to sit out the election. And as Trump knows better than anyone, there's nothing like good old fashioned fury to get out the vote. The man rode a wave that has crested. He will lose.

  230. @Kaleberg Thats a great point, im not sure ive heard anyone say they didnt vote for trump first time but will now. That would be an interesting poll. What percent/how many people who didnt vote for trump will do so this time..

  231. If the DP can come together and quit fighting over who is too liberal or progressive, then they should outpoll the yo-yo President. If they continue bickering in semantic terms, they will probably lose. They must be united in the ‘get out to vote’ posture needed to succeed.

  232. Two things scream out to be added to this article, which is off target and inaccurate. First, Donald Trump is the elite. He was raised to be elite. Attended elite schools and associates only with society's elite. That fact denies him the title of a populist. His unique policy of "If it ain't broke, break it" worked for him with NAFTA, TPP, Immigration, DACA and a host of other programs that worked just fine until he took a hammer to them. Second, the writer misreads the issues in Europe and the U.S. as having to do with fuel taxes or immigration. Because it is not PC to call someone a racist, I will do so. Trump's policies are racist. The reaction to the immigrants from North Africa in Europe is racist. The bottom line, at least in the U.S. is that Trump policy foundations rely on his followers basest instincts against Muslims, Mexicans and African Americans. They appeal to racists and racists will support him in 2020. Finally, when are we going to stop calling a 10-year economic expansion "recovery"? Is it still a recovery because it hasn't broken four percent annual growth? Or is it the new norm that Trump has brought us to expect. This is it folks. Slow growth, massive increases in debt and tax breaks for the rich. There's Trumponomics!

  233. @James M. Grandone I did not and will not vote for Trump. I do believe that the right wing, whether in the US or elsewhere, is far more tolerant of and stained with racism. I don't believe though that it is automatically racist for a French person to want their country to remain France or for a British person to feel the same way about the UK or for a Dane to feel the same way about Denmark. People aren't automatically bad because they don't want to become a different nation. European nations are not nations of immigrants or of civic nationalism. They're ethnic homelands based on shared background and culture. The international left wing insistence upon moving Third World populations into Europe and North America regardless of what citizens want will continue to bring electoral headaches-that is right up until the point of civil war.

  234. @James M. Grandone: Trump gets by on a 500 word vocabulary. His whole schtick is anti-intellectualism. People who think are the enemy.

  235. Hatred sells. It won by a squeaker in 2016. But count on the threes: 1. The largest protest in American history erupted the day after Inauguration- The Women's March. 2. That force did not evaporate, it fueled a historic crushing of an incumbent president, and made real the fact that America is not yet ready to abandon democracy for hate, the Election of 2018. 3. The Spirit of 1776 has defeated kings and tyrants, over and over, and will again as the forces unleashed in the Women's March and the Election of 2018 rise up once more in the Election of 2020.

  236. "What unites these issues is the idea that elites insulate themselves from the costs of the policies they impose on others. It is the idea on which Mr. Trump and his anti-elitist supporters base their campaigns." Mr. Continetti has offered up a dog's breakfast of global populist impulses lumped together as some sort of coherent movement. But no credible connective thread has been provided. One may exist, but Continetti has yet to find it. Tribal impulses are by definition stubbornly local, so each country will have its own unique variations. What is held in common is the subliminal tribal urge, not the surface issues where the urge manifests. On the deepest level there is a grieving over a loss community to the bland soulless forces of global capitalism -- but we have as yet to see more than an inarticulate lashing out. Trump may have won running against the vague bogeyman of greedy and incompetent elites in 2016, but he will need more than that in 2020 to rise above his 40% base of hard-core true believers. Trump is now the elite -- visibly far more greedy and incompetent than his predecessors. This will not again win him the Rust Belt states. Trump's only viable path to victory is to wholeheartedly embrace the Biblical role laid out for him by his fundamentalist Protestant and conservative Catholic supporters, then raise the abortion issue to top priority to bring out the vote. The problem is that abortion is an issue that will energize Trump's opposition as well.

  237. @woofer This is all too DNC Politburo byzantine. It's not complicated: protection of sovereignty above all, citizens first, an economy not slave to China, not outsourced to Mexico, and the watering of the American spirit best expressed by the Bill of Rights. The things that matter most.

  238. @woofer: Trump's religious backers want their Revelations played out. They want their God to show itself.

  239. Yes - and this is precisely why we need a candidate from the left who also taps into this current - AKA Sanders or Warren. They can siphon off a good deal of these voters.

  240. What defines Trump isn’t his faux populism. What sets him apart from genuine populists like Sanders, Warren, his nativism. This is a critical distinction that the article has glossed over.

  241. The commenters discounting the idea of an anti-elite wave supporting Trump's reelection need to get out and actually listen to regular people. They are frustrated and angry at the elites and Trump has convinced many of them that he's on their side because he's got the elites in an uproar about him, about his "dangerous populism" and about his "deplorable," "uneducated" and "easily duped" supporters threatening the elite-friendly status quo we had before Trump. Which it why it's absolutely vital that the Democrats actually run against both Trump and the "centrist/elitist" status quo that caused the anger that allowed Trump to win in 2016. To do that the Democrats cannot again nominate a centrist champion of the status quo like Biden. The hard-core Trump supporters may be a lost cause, but there are many potential swing voters who are also angry and will only come out to vote for a Democrat who credibly promises to shake things up as much Trump. This means a Sanders, a Warren, or possibly even a Harris or a Gabbard. It does not mean a Biden. Trump can only be beaten by a candidate who can credibly convince voters he or she, unlike Trump, is willing to really take on the elites, "drain the swamp" and disrupt the rigged status quo that they believe the elites, Wall Street and the 1 percent. The anger must be redirected and the opportunity seized by the Democrats. A middle-of-the-road candidate running against Trump will end up roadkill like the GOP primary field he crushed 2016.

  242. @Guy Baehr Hey Guy, "For every difficult problem there is a solution that is simple, clear,.... and wrong." -Mencken. Your simple, clear solution to Trumps egomania ignores how the Dems who actually won their historic sweep of the House in 2018: it was the middle-of-the road candidate, not the lefties or extremists sticking it in someones face as you prefer. These winners are sensible, pragmatic, and like it or not, are definitely the "elites" in most cases (experienced, educated, but moderate) who won those seats from Repubs. Speaking of the dreaded "elites", I'm happy and grateful for my higher education. Ironically, its one thing that actually made USA "great" over last 60 years. Yet, those feeling left out of that American dream are rightly resentful. But, sadly for them the solutions are not the deceptive, simplistic pitch of Trumpism, but are complex and a middle way between unfettered capitalism and social democracy. People like me are not the problem. Fact is, those feeling left out dont really want to kill the whole system....they actually want in! Trump promised to "un-rig" the system, so they could get in, but he and other autocrats lie, and do the opposite. They move fast to protect their own wealth and power, by throwing bones and sophisms to the "poorly educated", whom they claim to love. Look at the bigger picture beyond the tabloid view of "elites" as the problem. They are the scapegoat, an old story.

  243. This article puts some realpolitik on the table, about what issues will actually make voters, rather than identity politics and the marked growth of progressive candidates for the Democratic party nomination. Unless a massive financial collapse or a war that directly affects Americans occurs Trump will likely win re-election. I do take exception to labelling an arbitrary group as "Elites", however this article deftly highlights the conundrum Democrats voters are faced with. The critical question for Democrats is how pragmatic are they willing to be in order to vote Trump and the Republican party out of office? Perhaps play the middle ground. Democrats want to see Trump defeated, and I daresay that most would feel any Democratic president would be better than another four year of this current administration. If the Democrats elect a candidate that is the embodiment of the anti Trump movement, they will lose. There has been some dumfounding, crazy and highly unsettling moments in the administration but it remains that most Americans want security, financial and otherwise. The economy is still relatively strong and Trump and his enablers have not caused another war or unalterably damaged it's global standing- yet. It might sting to vote for a candidate that doesn't perfectly align with your principles but let's be pragmatic: Trump must be defeated and even a Democratic moderate would be supremely preferable to another four years of a Trump presidency.

  244. @James Pollock I think you missed the point of the article. There is a worldwide revolt against the establishment and the elites that control them. You might succeed if you nominate someone like Biden for one election cycle but he is the embodiment of the Democratic elite. Another Hillary Clinton. People want profound change at the same time they want stability and an end to political warfare. They can't have both. The world is changing too quickly and candidates who want to adapt to the new reality without making radical changes to the structure of American government and economics will satisfy no one in the end. What we are witnessing is the end of democracy and the rise of managed authoritarianism as we see in China because we cannot cope with the coming new reality and have a comfortable middle of the road democracy at the same time.

  245. @Andrew Zuckerman I think you've raised some interesting and valid points. Perhaps the idea of a new reality where democracy is becoming almost outmoded in the current political climate is true. I certainly hope not. It's basically a question of can whether people have their cake and eat it too and if so, for how long before democracy dies in long standing democracies.

  246. @James Pollock No system of government is prepared for what is coming. We have the growing existential threat of climate change looming and politicians are afraid that electricity prices will rise, balking at doing anything. If you have a better plan that won't raise prices, offer it. Otherwise, get off the pot and support radical carbon reduction. Electricity prices won't matter if we can't raise crops and cities are flooded. The price of everything will go up and survival of many will be in question. How does any system of government which depends on popular will or the will of oligarchs make decisions in the best interest of the people.

  247. I am an Independent now, I was a lifelong Democrat until one year ago; now the Democrats have gone just plain bizarre; we cannot have socialism with open borders, uncontrolled illegal immigration and constant calls for war in the Middle East will destroy our country. The problem we are currently having with the left that want radical socialism is that most of these people are first or second generation Americans. We who had relatives who fought in the 2nd World War understand this to be a bad choice; sure health care for all is a great idea, but not so great when we have open borders. Trump will win; Democrats will ensue this to be the case. Too bad.

  248. @JRS I haven't heard any Democrats calling for war anywhere--quite the opposite. And "radical socialism"? You mean single-payer healthcare coverage that virtually every other country offers its citizens? I don't know what "open borders" means, since immigrants have always had to go through legal channels to enter the country; it's Trump's cruel "solutions" that have made a more crowded situation worse. I think you've been listening to the wrong media (Russian accents?).

  249. @JRS The Indy/Dem candidate that isn't for Open Borders is Sen. Sanders. The only candidate that has actually taken steps (see Yemen bill) and has voted against constant wars and Trumps(& Dems) bloated military budget is...Sen. Sanders. As for *radical socialism* nobody is running upon that. The Democratic socialism ideals of healthcare for all, Pushing Green Energy/Climate Crises, Gov. that works for all of us, ending Citizens United, Taxing the 1% and Corp. to pay their fair share, improving our schools and educ. ; none of these are *radical* ideas. They are all pragmatic, middle of the road, basic common sense. Your relatives who fought in WW2, fought against Fascism. *Socialists* were on the front lines in WW1 &2 against fascism even before America entered the wars. Just as many *socialist* are again taking the fight to our streets against Rightwing fascists. No, a vote for anyone else but BLUE, is giving into the growing Rightwing fascism here in the US. That would be *too bad*.

  250. @JRS The Obama administration deported more illegal immigrants than any previous administration. Illegal immigration was greatly reduced under Obama. He came up with a plan that registered and enabled the government to identify many undocumented people. He was a Democrat. Under the Republicans we now have a "border crisis" and naturalized citizens are worried about their immigration status. There are no Democrats calling for war in the Middle East. It is your Republican president who has a bee in is bonnet about Iran and tossed a peace deal that was working. You are not a Democrat. If you were, you wouldn't get your news from Fox.

  251. The United States most decidedly IS engaged in a major war...actually several.

  252. In analyzing politics, as in analyzing the stock market, it's unwise to argue, "This time is different" with much self-assurance. However, it must count for something that America has never before had an incumbent president who was such a bizarre parody of the office and also such an electoral fluke. There have been multiple confirmations, by people who should know, that Donald Trump's run for office was intended only as a business venture, a strategy for promoting his brand. Then he surprised himself by winning. This victory resulted from a freakish distribution of votes that gave him a majority in the Electoral College even as he lost the popular ballot. Since taking office, he has recklessly played the fool with Kim Jong-un and the lackey with Vladimir V. Putin while merely riding favorable domestic economic numbers. The one legislative success he's been permitted by the Republican establishment is a tax law that benefits the rich at the expense of most other Americans. He has appointed conservative judges and justices, but Trumpists can rouse their families to just so much rejoicing at that around a Spartan dinner table. Donald Trump is by any measure The Man Who Never Should Have Been President. As president in fact, he's a yawning black hole at the center of the US Government. As a public figure, he's increasingly ridiculous. His incumbency is nothing short of a bad dream to millions. There should be more than usual grounds to believe that this time is different.

  253. @Longestaffe If and only if there is a larger turnout than last time. A turnout of younger voters. Of the candidates, Elizabeth Warren is the one I could most get behind. We need a change in the Senate--an admitted long shot.

  254. @Longestaffe You're so right and this time it is different. I know that we're going to have a massive turnout that will overcome the gerrymandering and shatter the GOP.

  255. The Democrats need a dose of Realpolitik. 1. Cut back on support for immigration/asylum. About the worst thing that has ever happened to the Dems was the border invasion by central American teens in 2014. That issue led to Trump. 2. Trump = War! Trump = War! Trump = War! 3. Government guaranteed health insurance for everyone who works. The government can get the health care industry to heel. The money saved by American businesses will fuel a wave of prosperity. 4. A Marshall Plan for alternative energy creation. Include nuclear energy. 5. A concerted effort to develop central America. Create a wall of prosperity.

  256. @Caveman 007 For a caveman, you have some decent awareness and political insights. But some of things you mention are excellent, overdue policy.... but not wise to campaign on: E.g. "Gov guaranteed health insurance" is inevitable since it's economically sensible as you say, yet it still raises fears ("socialized medicine", "Government bureaucracy, blah, blah!) . Here in Canada (I'm a US citizen living in Canada), at first universal health care was successfully attacked by the right until it was bravely tried in a few provinces, and people could see the results... this took several years.

  257. @Caveman 007 so agree with you! And if there is a war, it won't be the children of the "elites" fighting it.

  258. @Caveman 007 Of course Trump will be reelected ...It's ludicrous to pretend otherwise... All the machinations on the left are for 2024, Mayor Pete, at 43, will be well positioned to be the first young gay President...Hope he blocks robo calls, the truest blight on this nation...

  259. It is unlikely that Trump will find any new supporters but he can't afford to have any leave his base. The Democrats need to be politely more accurately aggressive. Any and all comments regarding Trump should mention: 1. Trump loves everything about the military except to serve in the military. 2. How many games of golf has he played since becoming President? 3. He lost the popular vote 4. If everyone was as smart as Trump and avoided paying taxes how would anything be paid for? 5. When will Mexico pay for the wall 6. The "best' are no longer in the Cabinet Many of his supporters realize that the don't really have the "American dream" and never will not because of others but because of themselves.....but they blame others Trump allows those who have "lost it" to blame others vs themselves. He has collected the Pro -Life/ Pro- Gun/ Anti -immigrant /Anti same sex etc groups as supporters. They have felt left out and now are part of MAGA group. IF we vote we win

  260. @PhilipOh I love post, but golf, serve in Military, paying taxes, other women, etc,etc. People just don't care about that. They are losing issues. I just don't see people that voted for him in 2016 not to vote for him in 2020. The economy is to good to vote a President out. It just does not happen. I think he is the winner if the election were held next week. Maybe even a landslide.If that happens lookout, he will try to remove the term limits.

  261. @bigruss Not happening. He can't remove term limits unless he gains control of the military in an absolute sense. He wouldn't have the votes to remove term limits from the Constitution.

  262. Has he bribed enough of the electoral college? No matter how big his lies or how destructive his policies...or wars, if the recession that he will use to justify terminating social security and medicare starts after the election he’ll win. His friends will cover up the true economic statistics until after the election. The greed principle is what really motivates his supporters. If the market tanks before hand and he doesn’t use a made up war to terminate the press, impeachment, the elections, etc. it’s possible that he might lose.

  263. All the more reason for Democrats (and Independents) to turn-out in support of the Democratic nominee, whoever the nominee is. It shouldn't matter if Biden, Warren, Buttigieg, Booker, Harris, or someone else gets the nomination. We turn-out as never before and we vote Democrat. I'm tired of Trump. I'm tired of the Republicans. I'm tired of solid policy losing out to rhetorical sleight of hand. For me, 2020 is the year all of that ends. It's a new day for America, vote Democrat.

  264. @POW No, actually it does matter who gets nominated. If the nominee cannot energize and inspire the base, then it will be a repeat of 2016.

  265. @Andre Yes, and the Dems base in swing states is moderate. Its mostly concerned about everyday things (e.g. access to health care, to higher education) whether the left wing likes that or not.

  266. @john grover The left wing of the Democratic Party is home to the only candidates willing to redistribute wealth in order to provide health care and education for people of ordinary means.