The Corona Tsunami
Of course, I am not involved in activism but sincerely, as I understand the sentiments, Trump is a solid underdog in this election, just because of the pandemic. It is very unlikely for an incumbent to win especially when 231,000 people have died in the US from COVID-19, a massive, fast, difficult to stop, global and deadly ailment. Every household has a deeply moving story. Every home is connected with several people, even if we rationalize with them to vote for Trump, barring some outliers, they are unlikely to change their mind and vote for Trump. The economic devastation and the recession has only added to the suffering. True to Tsunami’s nature, several ripples of Coronavirus pandemic kept radiating until it ravaged the economy.
How the Ethnicities Lean
I see the Mexican (slightly leaning away), Indian (mostly leaning away), Asian (leaning away), Black (solidly leaning away), Arab (leaning away), and most ethnicities from Europe turning away from Trump. These comprise more than 30% of the voting population. I have a pulse of the college sentiments and the metros. He is unlikely to make a dent in these places. Yes, ladies have not forgotten the ill-treatment (mean language) meted out to them in his discourses (Sorry for reminding but remember, the hand comment, where he will put his hand…). It has still left a disgusting taste.
How the Red States lean
I know, in the red states, the countryside makes a difference and this time around, they too are not there with him, naturally because the pandemic and the recession have inflicted a lot of loss for them. Agriculture income has taken a beating and so is industrial production and fossil fuel. Rustbelt (Wisconsin and Pennsylvania) and Sunbelt sentiments are leaning away (Florida and Arizona), so also the sunbelt sentiments. New York and California were never with him and so will be the swing states that are difficult to tilt in his direction.
Good Side – The Indomitable Influence of Trump
Trump is a smart businessman and an effective negotiator, qualities that make him an a very effective leader. Most leaders are unlikely to dive into hotspots, take the risk and negotiate. China, North Korea, and Iran are clear examples. Another staggering example is the alignment between the Sunni’s and the Jews. I don’t think anyone would have mustered enough courage to redefine the Trans Pacific Pact (TPP) or the North Atlantic Free Trade Association (NAFTA). Do you know, recently, Japan and Taiwan have bought defense deals worth 2 billion and 1.8 billion dollars recently. Until now, the US was protecting them. Finally, there is a value coming for providing that protection. Beyond the borders of the nation, he has done phenomenally. I am not sure if he has stitched the fabric internally within the nation. He has pushed the 3 conservatives to the supreme court. These are all long term influences. Unfortunately, people go by the theatrics and indecent talks, despite we have to ignore those and see the substance.
Sunbelt Versus Rustbelt
Sunbelt – Traditionally a forte for the Republicans, it also encompasses, the Bible Belt. Most Southern States starting from Florida (29), Mississippi (6), Alabama (9), Georgia (16), Oklahoma (7), Colorado (9), Texas (38), Arizona (11), New Mexico (5), Arkansas (6), Tennessee (11), Louisiana (8) and California (55) are part of the Sunbelt. Trump has a challenge, his inflammatory behavior alienated most traditional republican vote bank. California has never been
Rust Belt – At its maximum, the rustbelt encompasses a total of 140 electoral college votes. A vestige of the industrial past, that has built the mega cities of China, it consists of the Iowa (6), Indiana (11), Ohio (18), Pennsylvania (20) and Minnesota (10), Wisconsin (10), Illinois (20), Michigan (16), and some regions of New York (29).
There is a simmering discontent amongst the blue collared workers, who are left with dilapidated factories and denuding economy. What binds and boasts their pride is the liberal nature and accommodativeness. traditionally, never a republican strong hold, this region was neglected by Hillary Clinton in 2016, due to some technical analytical snags resulting in less priority of last minute focus, resulting in a massive advantage to Trump. That mistake was rectified from the onset of this campaign as it forms a cauldron of battleground states.
What Trump Needs to do 30 hours before the election
This is the talk that the campaigners should use while connecting with those who are fence seaters. A frank heart to heart discussion that would change the mind. Not just forward some messages – On Facebook, Twitter, WhatsUp or other Social Media. To make it effective, Social media is not enough, You have to pick up the phone and connect personally. To understand the effectiveness of the messages, you have to ask if they can get more onboarded for the campaign.
Negativity is not enough
People are angry, they have lost their loved ones and their jobs and livelihood. Trump has to be sincere and agree that he understands the pathos. That not every thing was in his control, like a natural disaster is, however, he has to assure them he will do the best. Trump has to a clean up, just not focus on Hunter Biden. He has to veer away from personal probity and focus on delivering on issues of national importance. Personal probity and ethical issues are at the heart of most US campaigns. Disguising or ignoring is not enough. Possibly sharing the tax record may provide that confidence. He has to clarify the taxes – $750 as federal taxes and $188,000 paid in China ( you cannot feign in China). He has to provide a plan to share those with the country. He has to consolidate Iowa (6), Indiana (11), Ohio (18) and try his best for Pennsylvania (20) and Minnesota (10). This is a tall order but the 65 electoral votes will counter ‘Biden Blue Bolt’ from the influence of the blue collared rust belt. The worst nightmare if Trump getting Iowa, Indiana and somehow retain Ohio, totaling 35, a defeat indeed.
What should Biden Do?
Biden has to focus on the swing states. Address micro campaigns to those segments that are are likely to impact the outcome – rustbelt, white collar, white, women, agriculture, etc. In Pennsylvania, Biden has to continue with Minnesota (10), Wisconsin (10), Illinois (20), Michigan (16), Pennsylvania (20), New York (29), offering 105 seats out of the 140. It is easy but it won’t stop until the last vote is counted.
As a closing comment, all I can say, fate is sealed for this election. I am not sure who will win but one thing for sure, you cannot, but do some futile efforts in sending too many messages.
This is a straight talk, no hold’s barred, no partisan views, that’s the reality. Pardon me for using language, if any. It is the vestige of the Trump era.