Late Tuesday night, it appeared that Donald Trump had won reelection rather decisively. Not only had he scored a historic win in Florida (about which more later), but the results being reported at 11 p.m. Eastern showed the president with commanding leads in Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin. By the time I woke up Wednesday morning, however, those states had all been flipped into Joe Biden’s column, and cable TV news was claiming — contrary to evidence — that Georgia was still “too close to call.”
The Democrat I mocked as “Landslide Joe” failed to meet expectations, and Democrats also lost important down-ticket races where they squandered tens of millions of dollars trying to take Senate and House seats that the GOP won. Mitch McConnell cruised to reelection in Kentucky, and Lindsey Graham fought off a well-funded challenger in South Carolina.
Details of presidential results in the states that will decide the winner of this election are something that pundits will be chewing over all day, if not for weeks to come. What we can conclude now — without knowing the final official outcome — is that Trump wildly outperformed the results predicted by public opinion polls. Not only that, even if Trump should eventually get edged out in the Electoral College vote, he did better than either of the two most recent Republican presidential candidates.
In 2008, the late Sen. John McCain got 45.7 percent of the popular vote (59.9 million to Barack Obama’s 69.5 million) and 173 Electoral College votes. In 2012, Mitt Romney got 47.2 percent of the popular vote (60.9 million to Obama’s 65.9 million) and 206 Electoral College votes. As of Wednesday morning, Trump had 48 percent of the popular vote (67.3 million to Biden’s 69.6 million) and 213 Electoral College votes.
Those numbers matter, because all the weak, wussy, sold-out, backstabbing, open-borders turncoats of the GOP’s “Never Trump” faction — Rick Wilson and that crowd of cheapjack swindlers — expected voters to repudiate Trump by a decisive margin. Instead, the president in his reelection campaign outperformed either of the two RINO losers that the Republican Party nominated against Obama. The “Never Trump” contingent is finished, wiped out, forever discredited as pundits, analysts, or strategists to whom any conservative ought to pay heed. Block their accounts on Twitter and pretend they have ceased to exist.
Now, let’s talk about how badly the pollsters blew it this time. The final RealClearPolitics average of national polls had Biden winning by more than 7 points, 51.2 percent to 44 percent for Trump. They missed the margin by about 5 points, mostly because Trump got about 4 percentage points more than the polls predicted. Thus, “shy” Trump voters (those unwilling to talk to pollsters) were a major element of these predictive errors.
Among the worst-performing polls was once-respectable Quinnipiac University, whose final poll had Biden winning by 11 points (50-39), and which also predicted Biden to win Florida by 5 points (47-42) and Ohio by 4 points (47-43). In fact, Trump won Ohio with a solid 8-point margin (53-45) and won Florida 51-48. How Quinnipiac missed Ohio so badly is a mystery to me. Less than two weeks before Election Day, I spent a few days in Ohio, and the countryside was covered in Trump signs. This was a state where Trump beat Hillary Clinton by an 8-point margin in 2016, and there was no actual reason to think Ohioans liked Biden any better than they liked Hillary. Intelligent observers must suspect that these pollsters were propaganda agents in what American Thinker contributor Dex Bahr calls “a psy-ops [psychological operations] campaign against conservative morale.”
By the way, remember all that excited pre-election talk in the liberal media about flipping Texas “blue”? Didn’t happen. Not even close. Trump carried the Lone Star State with a comfortable margin of over 600,000 votes, 52-46. Republican Sen. John Cornyn was reelected with a margin of more than a million votes, 54-44, not a single Republican-held House seat was flipped by Democrats, and the Texas GOP also turned back a well-funded Democratic effort to win the lower chamber of the state legislature. Whatever else happened on Election Night, it was not the fabled “blue wave” Democrats and their media allies had hyped.
The most encouraging result Tuesday was Trump’s solid win in Florida. Early on Election Night, it became apparent that surprisingly strong support from Latino voters in the Miami area had destroyed the Biden campaign’s hope of winning the Sunshine State. Even while the chyrons on cable-news networks continued to show Florida “too close to call,” the Miami-Dade numbers told the tale of a Republican victory. Bertica Cabrera Morris, a GOP strategist and board member of Latinos for Trump, told NBC News, “Trump showed up in Florida. He asked us what our issues are and he addressed them. He didn’t take us for granted.” Exit polls indicate that Trump got nearly half (47 percent) of the Hispanic vote in Florida, and, considering Trump’s “build the wall” stance against illegal immigration, this indicates how wrong it is to view Latino voters as a single-issue monolith.
We still don’t know the final result (see Melissa Mackenzie’s analysis of the situation this morning), but what we do know should be encouraging for conservatives. Even if Biden is inaugurated as the next president, the Republican Party is still viable, and the potential of Trump-style “America First” populism going forward is very promising. America is not doomed, and we still have a fighting chance to save our constitutional republic.