Derek Mooney: Biden Will Win Bigly

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From top: Joe Biden in Dublin Castle during a visit to ireland as US Vice-President in 2016; Derek Mooney

When trying to forecast an election result a few weeks out from polling day political pundits protect themselves by saying well, this would be the result if people were voting tomorrow, but there are still a few weeks to go and anything could happen.

But, when it comes to this American presidential election, people are voting tomorrow, just as they were voting today, yesterday, last week and even back to mid-September.

According to Vote.org, 27 States are already voting in person and/or have totally mail-in ballots. 9 out of the 50 States have been open for early voting from six weeks before the November 3 polling date, including Pennsylvania, Illinois, Virginia and New Jersey. Early voting started in California a week ago.

Over 9 million Americans have already voted, this is 8-10 times as many as voted this early in 2016. In five states the number of ballots already returned is more than 20% of the 2016 turnout.

This suggests that many people have long made up their minds. This is confirmed by data from those early voting states that also provide party registration information, with twice as many registered Democrats turning out to vote as registered Republicans.

It is why forecasting the result of the election now is not a big problem. Joe Biden is going to win and win big. Biden may even be on the cusp of winning a Nixon or LBJ style clean sweep…. making Trump the McGovern or Goldwater of this political age.

It has been clear for some months that Trump was on his way to defeat and may even be about to take much of the GOP/Republican party with him. It is very likely that the Republicans will lose control of the Senate and maybe even of the House of Representatives such is the scale of the swing against Trump, exacerbated by his handling of the covid-19 pandemic.

As David Frum, a former speechwriter for President George W. Bush and a senior adviser to the Rudy Giuliani presidential campaign, commented a month ago:

“The anti-Trump ceiling has been as hard and unyielding as the pro-Trump floor – and a lot bigger. And that was before Trump drove US society and the US economy into the worst catastrophe since the Great Depression.”

So while Trump firmly holds the support of the vast majority of those who identify as Republican, there are fewer of these than there were 4 years ago and Trump support among independents is low.

Biden’s support among independents is high, especially among women. This includes many of the soccer Mom’s and suburban women who backed Trump in 2016, but now abandon him not out of any great love of Biden or the Democrats but because they disapprove of how Trump has conducted his Presidency, a sentiment aggravated by his handling of the coronavirus pandemic.

Now, before I proceed any further let me point out that I got the 2016 election wrong. I thought Hillary Clinton would win and she clearly didn’t. I thought that Hillary Clinton get about 2 million more votes than Donald Trump. She did.

I did not underestimate Trump. I predicted that he would win Florida and Ohio but was confident Clinton would win traditional Democrat (blue wall) states like Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin. I got that badly wrong.

This is precisely where Trump won the Presidency, getting less than a hundred thousand people who voted Obama in 2012 to swing to him in Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin. It was a targeted operation.

The point to bear in mind now is that Trump lost to Clinton in the popular vote in 2016 and today Trump is far behind the levels of support he was getting at this point in 2016.

I know the dangers of complacency or of summarily dismissing Trump. While he has lost a lot of ground, his campaign has the capacity to whip up conservative white males, the religious right and assorted other disaffected Americans from those who justifiably still feel let down and left behind to those who believe with near religious zeal that Trump is all that stands between them and a deep state, QAnon, pizzagate day of reckoning.

But while Trump is many things, a master self-marketer, a dime store despot he is not a political genius. He is a one trick pony, as his business career has shown.

Tony Schwartz, the man ghost wrote Trump’s The Art of the Deal book that helped create the Trump legend reckons Trump knows he is already beaten and is therefore determined to create maximum chaos and destruction as he watches his world crumble.

Schwartz says Trump is going full authoritarian, becoming a blend of Brazil’s Jair Bolsinaro and Jim Jones. Schwartz repeated the Jim Jones line on CNN a few nights ago adding:

“he’s feeling a sense of terror “I believe that he believes, he’s going to lose this election. And that’s making him crazy… he’s fearful of being seen as a loser.”

The one trick that Trump might try to pull is to challenge the election result. Small wonder Trump wants another pro Trump judge on the Supreme Court as soon as possible. He hopes the Supreme Court could decide the election outcome, not the voters.

This is what people outside the US should start to focus on now.

It may take several days to finally count all the votes given the volume of mail-in ballots, social distancing and other restrictions. For this reason it seems unlikely that the networks will be able to definitively project a winner on the night of the count – unless Biden is winning in a landslide.

This gives Trump a further opportunity to question the result. It is a racing certainty he will do this as he has spent months framing a public argument that the election is both unfair or improperly conducted. He and his Attorney General have spent weeks fuelling baseless claims on voter fraud.

Trump is preparing his last-ditch attempt to steal the election in the classic Trumpist move of accusing his opponents of doing precisely what he plans to do himself. Over recent days we have heard him call on his supporters to go out in strength, and for many of them that means armed, and watch the polling stations.

It has already happened in some places with the cohort of Trump supporters that Hillary Clinton rightly labelled the deplorables back in 2016 out on the streets attempting to impede and prevent voting in areas were Trump will do badly, particularly urban centres. While Trump won the state of Pennsylvania by 0.7%, (Trump 48.2% Clinton 47.5%) Hillary Clinton beat Trump in the biggest city, Philadelphia, by 67% (Clinton 82.3% : Trump 15.3%).

So, while I confidently predict Biden win, there will be much political upheaval between now and Biden’s inauguration on January 20th, 2021. There is a distinct risk that this will pour out on to the streets as Trump’s desperation to evade the thing he fears most: public humiliation and defeat, tests the US constitution to its limits. Nonetheless, I still think sanity will prevail and any attempt to steal the election will fail.

As happy as I am to predict a Biden win, I fully expect a Biden presidency will soon begin to disappoint his supporters. While most Americans and almost all Europeans will welcome the return of a normalised, measured and courteous presidency, expectations about Biden are so high that he cannot match them.

****

Turning briefly to the domestic front, the next 2-3 weeks will be critical. Tomorrow we have the budget which, despite the difficulties facing the country, should be quite straightforward – well relatively straightforward when compared to next year’s budget – assuming this government gets to producing a second budget.

The Covid-19 infection rates are the real test. Yesterday’s statement by Taoiseach, Micheál Martin on sticking with level 3 for a few more weeks, is probably the right course of action. They also contrast with Tánaiste Varadkar’s flip-flopping on a circuit break lockdown as he attempts to undo the damage of his attack on Nphet on last Monday’s RTÉ Claire Byrne tirade.

If we are going to go for a circuit breaker, and the Taoiseach sensibly attempts to dampen expectations on this front, then it must be a consistent circuit breaker across the entire island with the same rules applying across the 32 counties.

Meanwhile there are indicators that the level three restrictions in Dublin are working with the city’s 7-day average falling from 188.9 to 144.5.

The situation can be brought back under control by our actions and other people’s choices. We need both, one alone will not do it. So keep well, keep safe and see you next week.

Derek Mooney is a communications and public affairs consultant. He previously served as a Ministerial Adviser to the Fianna Fáil-led government 2004 – 2010.  His column appears here every Monday.Follow Derek on Twitter: @dsmooney

Rollingnews

54 thoughts on “Derek Mooney: Biden Will Win Bigly

  1. Dr.Fart

    no stats, or polls, or anything matter because Trump is and will cheat on levels people never thought possible. The biggest one being vote count centres. People presume these to be dependable and tamper-proof. And to an extent they are. But if you think he won’t try and meddle in that area you haven’t being paying attention. Get down to the bookies and put what you like on Trump winning. It’s going to happen.

    Reply
    1. goldenbrown

      +1 Dr.

      expect all sorts of shennanigans including armed militia turning up at polling stations to “observe”

      on the betting side it’s decent value you’ll get 2/1 today….I got a good bit better a few weeks back so looks like they’ve come in a bit

      PS. anyone still believe that he actually contracted C19? lol

      Reply
      1. Dr.Fart

        i thought initially that he faked having covid so he could use it as an excuse that Biden got two more weeks on the trail than him, and that he could use it to say “hey everyone i got thru it, its not that bad” to try a new angle of downplaying. But being carted off to hospital straight away says to me that he was scared. but he’s still using it as expected, while also throwing in weird lies like he discovered a cure while being treated for it, and that he understands it now because he had it and Biden doesn’t because he never even had it! but honestly, it doesnt matter what he says, his supporters won’t shirk. he will get in for a second term, and i think this is where we’ll really see his dictatorship kick in, to the detriment of the world. has been happening already, but it’ll ramp up in january.

        Reply
    2. The Gripper

      I’d love to say I was more optimistic but American Laws change very slowly.
      As long as there isn’t a law against breaking laws Trump will continue breaking Laws.

      It’s what he does.
      It’s how he works operates.

      He isn’t the idiot he pretends to be.

      Reply
  2. MME

    Biden might win but Trump might very well steal the election. I would not put a brass farthing on the eventual occupant of the White House post-election. Remember voter suppression measures in the US are unparalleled in any democracy.

    Reply
    1. The real Lindsley G

      Democracy?
      Not in MY America, no Sireee!

      I ain’t letting no Libertard give me no Health Insurance during no Global Pandemic, and I’ll stand on that principle until the day I die, so help me God!

      Godammit, who’s shooting all these arrows?

      Who let all these Native Americans into the building?

      Reply
      1. MME

        Don’t worry- Amy Coney Barrett will soon
        make sure you will never have to worry about health insurance, particularly if you have a pre-existing condition.

        If you can’t pay privately, tough, just throw yourself into a grave now…

        Reply
    1. Dr.Fart

      So people will die unneccesarily, but its worth it so you can scoff at someone you dont like being unhappy? Where the fupp is your mind at?

      Reply
          1. The rock

            Fact based on what?
            All over Europe the virus is spreading

            Soon Europe will be getting the same results as the USA

            And Biden is no knight in shining armour

          2. Dr.Fart

            im not even talking about the virus handling. Trump divides. That’s what he does. He also encourages violence. this has an effect when theres a population of 327 million. He also blocks any medicare, so people who wouldve gotten treatment, won’t under trump. Many will die who wouldnt. These are just some examples of many. Bejasus, you have a very vague and undetailed view on the world. Try to take more in.

  3. Gay Fawkes

    Trump will win. Think of the money he generates for social media by being the controversial figure he is. He’ll nick it with a little help from his friends. He may not be popular on the face of it but he gives big business what they want. Money. Watch this space.

    Reply
    1. The rock

      They could of had Bernie whose brand of communism is more in the lines of European democracy

      They chose Biden a complete puppet of the elite

      So the USA had no choice 4 years of trump or 4years of the so called liberal’s that created the politics that led to trump

      I know which one I would go for

      Reply
      1. Nigel

        Why do people think Trump will win in a landslide against Biden, but would lose against Sanders? Sanders is certainly a few degress left of Biden, but other than that the same conditions exist around the whole election – voter supression, disinformation, potential legal challenges to a packed court, and a media that absolutely loves nothing more than finding some ridiculous thing about the liberal candidate to latch on to while Trump’s endless scandals just seem to float on by. What extra voting power would he mobilise that he failed to mobilise in the Primary?

        Also – how did the liberals create the politics that lead to Trump? Are the conservatives who voted for him and elected him and supported him not the ones responsible?

        Reply
        1. The rock

          Bernie has little stench of corruption around him and remember the accusations of the max bygraves hands touchy freely joe

          Also was it not stated due to his age that he might retire after two years putting his Vice President in his job

          Many Americans might ask

          Am I voting for Biden or Harris

          Throw that into the mix and even if not true the electorate have the final say

          With trump as an opponent it’s going to get pretty dirty

          Reply
    2. :-Joe

      The amorphous blob of orange toxic poopie, drumpf..

      Wins easily with 362 electoral college votes and a +10 or -10 range of error..
      – If you fancy a bet on it that’s the best one I know of since March and hasn’t changed but the odds at 40-1 have halved since.

      Why anyone pays any attention to mooney beyond trying to learn more in how the corrupt system and his delusional spin tries to influence public opinion is beyond me…

      :-J

      Reply
  4. d

    Im surprised Derek is so confident having regard to last us election and the brexit referendum.

    remember it was predicted hilary would win by a landside according to the liberal media.

    im predicting a trump victory. people get the leaders they deserve.

    Reply
      1. Haroo

        Don’t see it myself. 2020 is not 2016. Even if we discount polls etc. based on logic I think poor Donnie is up against it.

        He can’t run on drain the swamp, he can’t run on change (he is the incumbent) and he no longer has a clean record (he inacted or did not inact policies – therefore he can be judged on policies and a track record and impact on voters).

        Think it is fair to say Biden is not as disliked as Clinton. Think it is fair to say that a lot who swung to Trump will swing back (in terms of disaffected/mild leaning Dems). Think it fair to say that the coronavirus handling is THE issue for this election – he has not done well according to polls on that and approval ratings. And as for more traditional swing voters, I think a lot (not all) will swing toward Biden based on the rona response, the economy, perception of a more stable/normalised presidency etc.

        In fairness, it is not like he romped home to victory last time (results in Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin were so close – if Biden wins those 3 back and all current blue states he wins) and lost the popular vote. Can we honestly say that he has increased his vote? Is it unlikely that those who dislike him are more numerous this time (the anyone but Trump vote)? Can Biden win North Carolina, Arizona, Florida? He is definitely in with a good chance.

        Anyway, everyone will just say that 2016 polls were wrong etc. etc. so no point arguing. We will all see in a few weeks. Until then we can argue about masks or lockdowns or paint chairs or something like that.

        Reply
        1. MME

          Even Nate Silver is advising that Trump can win via his Twitter yesterday. American elections are decided in a handful of swing states that are generally largely rural and red. Of course the popular vote counts for little – it is the electoral college in these few states that matters. And in these very states there is a sizeable amount of people who will vote for Trump even if he ripped a new born babe from his mother’s arms, sprinkled it with salt and devoured it whole on live TV. To be honest, at this stage such an occurrence wouldn’t really surprise anyone!

          Reply
        2. ian-oh

          I don’t take trump supporters seriously.

          At this stage, if you think lying, shouting and playing the victim for 4 years are qualities for leadership, then you are part of the problem.

          He is merely the symptom, can’t blame a career conman for taking advantage of the worlds largest pool of morons.

          Anyway, for ‘balance’, I wouldn’t vote for Biden in the normal run of things and faced with Clinton last time and trump I’d have been very sympathetic to US voters who went with trump because they were trying something new.

          The guy failed bigger than I would have though possible, but then I guess I did not take into account how spectacularly dumb his supporters actually are.

          Sigh.

          Anyway, no, I detest Biden and felt worse about Clinton in case anyone asks but at this stage, the trumptanic is going down and if voters feel the old wooden door that Biden represents is better, who can blame them? You might have some chance on the door, trump would have people injected with unsafe vaccines (or bleach, he did ask about it) just to win an election, but yay he’s the hero here.

          You guys are beyond parody. Work away.

          Reply
          1. MME

            I’m a card carrying liberal who laments the destruction wrought by Trump who is nothing more than a bungling petty Mafioso. BUT, I am in no way writing him off despite the cascade of incompetence – he has serious systemic advantages on his side and a blindingly loyal base who delight in the mess and the possibility of saying f-u to what they perceive as an establishment. They are also not as thick as you think- they know well he is a conman- they just don’t care. As I said above, Trump remaining on in the White House for another 4 years (at least) by whatever means will not and should not come as a surprise.

    1. Nigel

      The ‘liberal’ media spent weeks on ‘butter emails,’ and then came the Comey letter, which obviously harmed her significantly – is it that you think there will be an equivalent period where the liberal media focus on an non-substantive ‘scandal’ involving the liberal candidate punctuated by an explosive intervention that also turns out to be non-substantive, but which gets blanket coverage, while the multiple scandals of the conservative candidate get largely ignored?

      Reply
      1. Johnny

        The chairman of the senate judicial committee was twice on fox recently begging….his opponent has raised at least 100 million,this is in deep red South Carolina,can you hear us now Republicans.

        HELP ME HELP ME
        PLEASE
        THEY ARE KILLING ME

        As he tilts the Supreme Court right,electing a fully fledged member the god squad,yet is begging for cash.

        The Trump campaign is getting out spent two to one,the liberals and lefties are financing this coup Nigel,the media prefers a closer race,better for business.

        Reply
  5. Eoin

    Not if the turnout at Biden ‘rally’s is anything to go by. His policies are disastrous. Harris is universally disliked. Biden himself is mostly viewed as corrupt, a career politician…..basically an elderly Washington swamp creature. There aren’t enough stupid people in the US to vote for Biden. It’ll be a landslide for Trump. If Biden wins it’ll be because they rigged it. And that’s not too far fetched an idea either. They’re already rigging the debates with biased moderators…and they still can’t manage a win.

    Reply
    1. The rock

      Add in the sector that Biden’s job creation is based and its yep the very swamp that trump promised to drain

      You see the echelons of the democrats are so detached from the reality of the rust belts they did nothing to tackle do not realise what poverty brings and Obama care means nothing when you are homeless

      Reply
      1. MME

        Lol. I’m not sure Republicans and Trump give a toss about these guys either. They are just voting fodder. Rile them up with something obvious to herd then to the polling stations, then throw a few Opiods at them and forget about them for the next four years.

        Reply
  6. Johnny

    Rally’s,policies,but do you like me,oh FFS-show me the money Eoin,he diverted too much,this SC senate race is good example.
    Jaime Harrison’s campaign announced Sunday it raised $57 million in the third quarter of 2020,in American cash talks bullpoopy walks.
    Americans ain’t voting for no broke ….,he’s skint it’s over.

    Ps-pedantic point-House is already solidly D not in play.

    Reply
    1. Vanessanelle

      Harrison is going to need every cent of that if he’s to win South Carolina Johnny

      If the Republican incumbent there in the traditional Deep South is going to be ousted – it won’t be by money
      Harrison has been collecting twice as much and more than Graham since he announced earlier this year
      and has been spending it
      I’ve just checked there now
      and he’s still only neck and neck with Graham

      Don’t get me wrong, Lindsey Graham is an odious POS, and has disgraced himself on the Judiciary Committee, everything that is rotten in hard conservative politics and getting control of the courts, he’s pulled.

      But Trump took SC with over 15 points to spare, while Tim Scott romped home with 20+
      And Trump today, now, is still 5 up on Biden there

      Money won’t budge the GOP out of South Carolina – IMO anyway

      The race to watch folks is in Kentucky
      That hoor of a man Mitch McConnell v Amy McGrath
      11 terms v Challenger
      5 weeks in boot camp v fighter pilot (1st woman to fly in combat btw)

      Amy has raised about 47 mill to Mitch’s 37 mill, but she was an easy sell for rich Dems v the Republican they hate as much as Trump
      over 30 years between them and both with plenty $s left in the war chests
      Mitch is still quiet comfortable 10+, but polling hasn’t been recent, I can’t find anything since September (19th)

      OK, Trump hammered Clinton here in 2016 – like by 30% hammered
      And is still up 20+ on Biden there

      But I fancy Amy’s chances here to cause an upset, Mitch McConnell hasn’t done himself any favours during this campaign,
      So hopefully the Dems in HQ think she’s worth backing right up to polling day

      Hon Amy

      btw lads, use the State polls not the National ones

      Reply
      1. Johnny

        It’s not just about “winning” the seat V in many ways they already have,the message is be afraid,very this is a coup and we coming for you.
        Cruz just limped home,in Texas,this is red red South Carolina !
        Cronyn in a safe seat in Texas is in the fight of his life,one the biggest losers in all this are the brits,who made a big losing bet on Trump and trade,back the life for them:)

        Reply
          1. V AKA Frilly Keane

            Lemme tell ya Nidgie
            If Amy McGrath unseats Mitch McConnell
            There’s a whole new Politics about to break in America
            Which will be felt – eventually, over here / Western Europe too

            It’ll be the start of something

            Bodger ‘ll come in now an tell me she’s a gender quota obligation in the Treadstone programme
            Or some sort a Manchurian Candidate sent into Nellis to knock some fella off and ended up being a fighter pilot
            Or maybe French Secret Service looking to get close to Pelosi
            Anyway – it won’t be a straight forward Dem Candidate anyway

  7. Joe Small

    “It is very likely that the Republicans will lose control of the Senate and maybe even of the House of Representatives such is the scale of the swing against Trump, exacerbated by his handling of the covid-19 pandemic.”

    Th Democrats already control the House of Representatives. It would take a pretty decent swing to get the Senate too though. It has some built in advantages for the Republicans.

    Reply
    1. Johnny

      …show me the money-HELP HELP P L E A S E

      Dems built a better mouse trap,burying the R’s in a coup with a avalanche of dark dodgy cash,mega donor days are over….
      3rd quarter raises.
      Jaime Harrison D S.C. $57 million
      Theresa Greenfield D Iowa $28.7 million
      Cal Cunningham D N.C. $28.3 million
      John Hickenlooper D Colo. $22.6 million
      Mitch McConnell R Ky. $15.6 million
      Gary Peters D Mich. $14 million
      John James R Mich. $14 million
      MJ Hegar D Texas $13.5 million
      Raphael Warnock D Ga. $12.8 million
      Al Gross I* Alaska $9 million
      Mike Espy D Miss. $4 million

      …normal senate race 4-7 million,Trump gritted too much but yet not enough,who’s gonna vote for a broke ass president,some dictator,he can’t even scam enough to finance his own re-election,campaign finance reform anyone:)

      Reply
      1. Nigel

        So the Democrats are out-fund-raising the Republicans, and suddenly it’s a coup? Wasn’t it the Republicans who worked so hard to make campaign finance less regulated? Wasn’t it one of the Supreme Court decisions they celebrated that made Dark Money possible?

        Reply
        1. Johnny

          Senators represent their states,when Barbara Streisand and Rosie boast about headhunting Lindsey,by flooding the zone with out state of money,it’s a leftie liberal coup.
          If he’s such a corrupt crook,why is his campaign broke ?

          Reply
          1. Johnny

            Now Nigel,two wrongs don’t make it right.
            His health is poor,his political instincts gone,but most importantly.
            America is always about the cash,he doesn’t have any which is why he’s going lose in a landslide.

  8. Delacaravanio

    “…with the cohort of Trump supporters that Hillary Clinton rightly labelled the deplorables back in 2016 out on the streets…”

    She may have correctly labelled them as deplorables, but she was wrong to do so as it played into Trump’s portrayal of her as a snob.

    Reply

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