The Donald continues to pull away from Her Imperial Majesty in the polls in several key states. He’s made an impressive run, aided by Her Majesty’s serial scandals and gobsmacking, unrepentant dishonesty; what’s more, he’s managed it in spite of being outspent by orders of magnitude (so much for the corrupting influence of money in politics, eh?) Bear in mind that polls are lagging indicators. The Trumpmeister may actually be farther ahead than the polls would indicate. He still has a pretty good hill to climb in the Electoral College, but it’s becoming a serious race.
Could we be seeing the beginnings of a preference cascade?
In short, average people behave the way they think they ought to, even though that behavior might not reflect their own personal feelings. Given a sufficient “A-HA!” moment when they discover that their personal feelings are shared by a large portion of the population their behavior may change dramatically. An example of this is the British colonists before and after publication of Thomas Paine’s Common Sense. A year before the Declaration of Independence, America was full of patriotic British convinced that things could be worked out with King George, but on July 4, 1776 the colonies were full of Americans determined that they needed independence. Another is the relatively recent “Arab Spring.” The catalyst there has been credited to the self-immolation of Tunisian merchant in protest of his treatment by government authorities.
Veteran blogger Robert Stacy McCain proposed the possibility four years ago. At that time, the polls between Romney and Obama were closer – at least in the Electoral College – than they are now, but the momentum wasn’t in Romney’s favor.
As of this writing, it’s pretty clear that this year’s race is turning in The Donald’s favor. In Ohio, there seems to be an exodus of Democrats to the Trump camp. The Donald has pulled ahead in at least one poll in key states Nevada, North Carolina and Ohio, and he’s narrowing the gap in Virginia, Wisconsin and our own Colorado. Florida is definitely in play, and The Donald seems to be making plays for Michigan and Pennsylvania.
Remember the Electoral College, though, True Believers; The Donald has to flip pretty much all of these states in play if he’s going to walk into the Imperial Mansion in January.
Still; this late in the game, momentum is the key, and the momentum – at least now, in late September, seems to be moving Trump-wise. Which brings us to the preference cascade.
Her Imperial Majesty has based her whole campaign on one thing – “Trump is awful.” That’s not enough. But with a complicit legacy media in her corner, it does carry some weight, for a while. But as the tide turns towards The Donald, it may turn dramatically – the aforementioned preference cascade may well be taking effect. If it does, we’ll see a Trump landslide in November.
As I keep saying, the first debate on Monday will be key. Trump needs to come out swinging, he needs to keep Her Royal Highness back on her heels, he needs to come out clearly and unequivocally the winner. Her Majesty is rumored to be preparing for whichever Trump shows up to the party, but what she can’t prepare for is the fundamental flaws in her own personality; namely, that next to Trump she appears exactly what she is: Old, tired, sick, dull, and boring.
If there is to be a preference cascade, that’s what will kick it into high gear.