The 2020 Election Is Still Wide Open

The New York Times is a few days late with this, but here’s their Halloween scare for Democrats:

Yep, they report that President Trump remains competitive in the states that gave him victory in 2016. Jonathan Chait is irate:

In 2018, Democratic candidates waded into hostile territory and flipped 40 House districts…by avoiding controversial positions, and focusing obsessively on Republican weaknesses.

….The Democratic presidential field has largely abandoned that model. Working from the premise that the country largely agrees with them on everything, or that agreeing with the majority of voters on issues is not necessary to win, the campaign has proceeded in blissful unawareness of the extremely high chance that Trump will win again.

There is something to this. An awful lot of progressives are suffering these days from poll literalism, a fatal disease that takes the form of “the country agrees with us on all the issues!” And sure, the country does. Sort of. Generally speaking, majorities support most progressive ideas, but that support tends to be paper thin outside of the progressive base. Health care for all? Sure, that sounds great! But wait. Long lines and higher taxes and shortages of medication? Let’s put that on hold.

What’s that, you say? None of that is true? It’s just scare talk? You’re right! And it works great at scaring people. Gripe all you want, but the fact remains that the opposition gets to fight back, and progressives don’t get to decide what the opposition says.

So don’t get too wrapped up in the idea that everyone loves Medicare for All. If it were that easy, we’d already have it. As always, the election will turn on voters in the middle.

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TIME IS RUNNING OUT!

We have an ambitious $350,000 online fundraising goal this month and it's truly crunch time: About 15 percent of our yearly online giving usually comes in during the final week of the year, and in "No Cute Headlines or Manipulative BS," we explain why we simply can't afford to come up short right now.

The bottom line: Corporations and powerful people with deep pockets will never sustain the type of journalism Mother Jones exists to do. And advertising or profit-driven ownership groups will never make time-intensive, in-depth reporting viable.

That's why donations big and small make up 74 percent of our budget this year. There is no backup to keep us going, no alternate revenue source, no secret benefactor. If readers don’t donate, we won’t be here. It's that simple.

And if you can help us out with a donation right now, all online gifts will be matched thanks to an incredibly generous matching gift pledge.

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