All anyone knows for sure at this point is that the electoral map is a yuge mess. The answer to one critical question could sort it all out. Who exactly are Donald Trumps voters?
If Trump isn’t bringing the promised wave of new voters into the GOP, it’s far less likely the Manhattan businessman can transform a 2016 Electoral College map that begins tilted against the Republican Party. And whether Trump’s voters are truly new is a question of urgent interest both to GOP operatives and Hillary Clinton and her allies, who have dispatched their top analytics experts to find the answer.
Obviously, primary voter enthusiasm is great news for Trump:
Any way it’s sliced, the historic primary turnout of 2016 is good news for the GOP. It is a sign, as it was for Democrats in 2008 when the Clinton-Obama contest shattered old turnout records, of energy and enthusiasm that can often be translated into volunteer hours and campaign cash. And Democrats this year, despite the surprisingly close contest between Clinton and Bernie Sanders, are far below their previous turnout highs—raising the specter of a problematic enthusiasm gap this fall.
But it’s not all roses for Trump:
While Trump’s insurgent candidacy has spurred record-setting Republican primary turnout in state after state, the early statistics show that the vast majority of those voters aren’t actually new to voting or to the Republican Party, but rather they are reliable past voters in general elections. They are only casting ballots in a Republican primary for the first time.
According to the quick and dirty analysis by Politico it looks like Trump isn’t really bringing large numbers of new voters into the Republican Party but he is exciting existing voters. Politico’s analysis suggests that the political map won’t change too dramatically. Trump has already changed the political landscape by putting a few normally partisan states such as Michigan and Georgia into play. Overall, this election is slowly starting to look more like a minor shift than a major realignment for the political map. But things can change fast so stayed tuned to Presidential Politics!