After her election model predicted the 2018 election results to within a couple of seats, Rachel Bitecofer has applied the same standards to the 2020 presidential race.
The Christopher Newport University Watson Center for Public Policy assistant director used the “Negative Partisanship” model to determine that President Donald Trump will likely lose re-election to the Democratic Party nominee.
Her forecast shows the incumbent with 197 electoral votes and another 63 up for grabs. Under such a result, Trump would be unable to secure another term.
And Bitecofer said it has little to do with which of the two dozen candidates ultimately gets the Democratic Party nomination.
“Does the Democrat’s nominee matter? Sure, to an extent,” she said. If the ticket has a woman, a person of color or a Latino, or a female who is also a person of color, Democratic Party turnout will surge more in really important places. If the nominee is Biden he’d be well-advised to consider Democratic voter turnout his number one consideration when drawing his running mate to avoid the critical mistake made by Hillary Clinton in 2016.”
Nevertheless, she said voters are likely to be driven by their own fear than inspiration by a candidate.
“The complacent electorate of 2016, who were convinced Trump would never be president, has been replaced with the terrified electorate of 2020, who are convinced he’s the Terminator and can’t be stopped,” Bitecofer concluded. “Under my model, that distinction is not only important, it is everything.”