Two Days In: Catching Up with the Election, Narratives, & PPFA’s Divinity

All right, ten straight days is probably all you’re getting out of me. I have a real job and, though few believe it, a real wife and kids.

Let’s look at where things stand with Presidential Politics for America’s “Five Headlines of the Day.”

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Zero Days Out: Final Predictions

I did it! After a long layoff, PPFA has delivered on its promise of one post per day for the last week of the election. I’m not sure whether to say “You’re welcome” or “Sorry,” so I’ll just say: I’m so grateful to have you here.

But enough about me. Let’s talk about you. Let’s talk about the country. IT’S ELECTION DAY! You made it. The country has forged through a pandemic, social strife, and a Lakers NBA Championship just to get to this election, a process we should never take for granted. In the history of civilization, republican institutions are not the rule. They are the exception. In so many ways we lament our modern misfortunes, but in so many more ways we should remind ourselves how lucky we are to be alive right now.

Enough mushy stuff. You didn’t come here for mush. You came here for rock hard PPFA analysis. It’s now time to lock in predictions for Election Night 2020, even if we might not be able to check my work for days. This post will be split into three parts, the last of which will be the longest.

  1. Part I: the House of Representatives
  2. Part II: the Senate
  3. Part III: the Presidency

As you watch tonight, remember to keep handy yesterday’s post, where I walked you through poll closing times and the states to keep an eye on.

Okay, let’s do it — PPFA’s official 2020 prediction begins… NOW!

Continue reading “Zero Days Out: Final Predictions”

One Day Out: Your 2020 Election Viewing Guide

Tomorrow, it ends. Or, rather, tomorrow is the beginning of the end. Or maybe it’s the end of the beginning? Who knows anymore.

Though days of counting ballots will ensue, we hope that tomorrow, by the wee hours, we’ll have enough hard data and projectable data to determine who will win the House, Senate, and presidency. But don’t hold your breath.

To best prepare you for the big night, I’d like to give you a viewing guide. (It is now my longest running gimmick. I did it four years ago on PPFA, and I did it four years before that for Construction Literary Magazine. My record is 1-1, which technically is with the margin of error of 2-0.) This viewing guide will highlight battlegrounds for control of the presidency and Senate (which will be highlighted in green). Though #AllStatesMatter, in an election year some states matter more than others.

When consuming election coverage, you’ll want to know the following:

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Two Days Out: Presidential Politics for America Op-Ed

For a few years now, my “About the Writer” page labels me a “radical moderate.” At first I thought it a cute, oxymoronic coupling of words, but I’ve since grown to proudly wear the label.

I feel confident in few political positions; I neither watch cable news nor subscribe to slanted newsletters, so I haven’t bought into an army of one-sided talking points, incomplete facts, and uncontextualized claims. Through my fairly balanced Twitter feed and media diet, however, I’ve encountered all of those things. This approach has taught me that few political issues are as clear cut as a devout partisan suggests.

As a result, one of the few beliefs I do feel strongly about is that one shouldn’t feel too confident in one’s ideology. There’s a virtual guarantee that someone out there is smarter and more informed than you, yet they disagree with your politics. That being the case, my conclusion feels axiomatic: you shouldn’t feel confident in your political positions either.

Thus, as a radical moderate, I can’t say I’m pleased with the state of our political discourse.

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Six Days Out: The Race for the Presidency

Yesterday, I determined that the safest bet of this election was that the House of Representatives stays in Democratic hands. In contrast, I wouldn’t feel confident wagering on the the presidential and Senate results. Of the two, I feel more confident — or, that is, less unconfident — in the presidential race, so today it is on that race I’ll focus. Later this week, I’ll look at the scramble for the Senate.

The Presidency

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Where Have You Gone, Ken Bone? (Our Nation Turns Its Nervous Eyes to You)

(Author’s note: You’ll be relieved to know PPFA’s frequent, turgid posts are not permanently back after a six-month hiatus. I found the time and motivation to make a single post with a take on where this election is headed. Just give me 20 minutes of your time, then I’ll leave you alone again.)

It’s an image seared into the nation’s collective consciousness. A balding, bespectacled, mustachioed man studies two debating candidates. The glow of his red sweater lights up the screen while the seams of his backup pants hold on for dear life. His name was, impossibly, Ken Bone, and for the better part of a news cycle he was America’s sweetheart. I literally wrote a sonnet about him.

Mr. Bone quickly became America’s mental picture of the undecided voter, a group that made up an unusually high 15 percent of voters in the 2016 campaign’s closing weeks. It was hard to imagine all the Ken Bones out there unable to decide between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, but there were apparently many.

This time, however, there are apparently few. In 2020, the American electorate, like our President’s favorite crispy dinner, is Boneless.

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Halfway There: After a Midterm Loss, How Do Trump’s Re-Election Chances Compare to That of His Predecessors?

It’s been two years since President Trump’s inauguration — and two months since the Democratic Party had its most successful House midterm since Watergate. Now that all the votes are finally counted, we know that the Democrats did better than … Continue reading Halfway There: After a Midterm Loss, How Do Trump’s Re-Election Chances Compare to That of His Predecessors?