With Major Media Outlets Announcing Texas as a New Battleground State, Our Resident Political Strategist Jett James Pruitt Chimes In With an Even Bolder Prediction.
As incumbent President Donald J. Trump, and former Vice President Joe Biden make their final pitches to voters before Tuesday, media outlets are preemptively calling this historic election a win for Biden, despite hard lessons learned from 2016.
Even Biden himself showcased his confidence in the small lead reported across multiple polls by staying home more than attending rallies in the previous weeks. Yesterday, Biden openly confirmed his quiet confidence when he stated at a Broward County event that, "If Florida goes blue, it's over."
Pollsters from major news organizations such as FiveThirtyEight, The Washington Post, and RealClearPolitics, are reporting that Biden is leading Trump in several battleground states. For example, an October 29th Washington Post article reports that Biden is leading Trump by nine points in Michigan and Wisconsin—two pivotal states that propelled the president to victory in 2016.
While The Gen Z Post received backlash for our supposedly “outlandish” prediction of a Trump electoral win back in August, teen political strategist Jett James Pruitt continues to believe that President Trump will be victorious on November 3rd. According to Pruitt, several battleground states—including Florida, Minnesota, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin—will appear red on the election maps of cable news networks.
As Pruitt continues to stand by his prediction, one state has emerged as a last-minute toss-up. Pollsters speculate that Texas, with its 38 electoral votes, is leaning away from the president in favor of his Democratic opponent. Recent polls indicate that the election in Texas has become a highly competitive race, thanks in part to the state’s population boom. In fact, according to the U.S. Census, Texas had the nation’s largest annual population growth between 2010 and 2016.
The race in Texas has become so competitive that the Cook Political Report, which is a widely-respected polling organization, moved Texas on Wednesday from the “Lean Republican” to its “Toss Up” column. Political analyst Amy Walter commented that “Texas is a state that Biden doesn’t need to win, but it is clear that it’s more competitive than ever,” as per CNBC. Early this morning, Politico followed suit, moving Texas into unknown territory.
As most Americans know, Texas is ruby red. The Lone Star State hasn’t voted for a Democratic presidential nominee since Jimmy Carter won it in 1976, a whopping 44 years ago. Moreover, both Senators Ted Cruz and John Cornyn are ardent Republicans; 23 out of 36 congressional representatives are Republicans.
On the state level, the GOP controls both houses of congress and the governorship.
So, as exemplified by the political demographics of the state, how can the Democratic Party even dream of winning Texas? What is causing many voters to shift to the left? And, even if Biden wins Texas, can Trump still win the presidency?
There are three main factors that benefit the Biden-Harris campaign in Texas:
1. Statistics show that counties outside major metropolises are rapidly becoming more populated. Cities such as Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio typically vote for Democratic nominees unlike the rest of the state. Therefore, Texas’ large population boom adds more uncertainty to the final result.
2. A surge in early voting—particularly among people ages 18 to 29—indicates an increase in Democratic enthusiasm. According to TargetSmart, more than 900,000 voters under the age of 30 had cast their ballots in Texas by midweek. While most voters in the state are registered Republicans, Tufts University found that younger voters tend to favor Democratic candidates by a 30-point margin. This could serve as an obstacle for the Trump-Pence campaign.
3. After Beto O’Rourke almost unseated Senator Ted Cruz in the 2018 election cycle, many Democrats are optimistic that O’Rourke’s spirited campaign will translate to a Biden win. O’Rourke performed so well, in fact, that he only lost by a 2.6% margin against his Republican opponent. Compare that to 2012, when Senator Cruz defeated Paul Sadler by a 15.9% margin.
Former Texas Congressman, Beto O'Rourke
While these are valid concerns for the Republican Party to address, Trump is still the mostly likely candidate to win Texas. Most polling averages show the president ahead of Biden by two or three percentage points in the Lone Star state. This time, the polls are correct.
Why? Because, as the New York Post reported earlier this year, Republican voters are less likely to express their political views compared to their Democratic counterparts. Therefore, when we account for the number of Trump supporters who refuse to participate in surveys, these polls are actually more accurate than the national average.
Furthermore, O’Rourke’s performance does not indicate any blue wave in Texas.
If pollsters were to predict presidential wins based on midterm elections, Alabama would be a tossup state.
After all, in 2017, Doug Jones became the first Democrat to represent Alabama in the senate since the mid-1990s. Yet, as polls indicate, Trump is expected to carry Alabama by a resounding margin.
The same thing applies to Kentucky, which recently elected Democrat Andy Beshear as its governor. Just like Alabama, ruby red Kentucky is projected to support the president by a wide margin.
As Pruitt said in the ripe months of the campaign season, presidents frequently face backlashes in the middle of their term. If modern history tells us anything, the Blue Wave that occurred in 2018 was simply part of an ever-existing pattern. Therefore, we can reasonably conclude that O’Rourke’s enthusiasm will not carry Biden to victory on November 3rd.
So, there remains one question to be answered:
What happens if the president loses Texas? Can he still win re-election under this unlikely scenario?
Data suggests that a Biden win in Texas would significantly narrow Trump’s path to victory. In fact, a loss in the state could make him a one term president.
With all else being equal to Pruitt’s prediction, even if the president won the battleground states of Florida, Georgia, Minnesota, Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, but lost Texas, he would have failed to attain the 270-mark required for victory.
Under that scenario, Biden would receive 272 electoral votes against the president’s 266.
So, as demonstrated by the electoral map, Texas is an extremely important state for the president to win. If Biden were to win Texas, the president’s best chance would be to win Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, New Hampshire, Nevada, or Virginia to propel him to the top. While this wouldn’t be impossible, it may be difficult to accomplish.
For this reason, even though he is likely to win the Lone Star state, the President cannot take Texas—and its 38 electoral votes—for granted.
However, we still stand by our prediction first made on August 21, 2020 of a Trump win by 288 electoral votes. Yet, only time will tell if our call was correct.
Article Written by Jett James Pruitt
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