Trump in a landslide? This historically accurate model predicts exactly that


President Donald Trump has a love/hate relationship with polls, surveys and predictions. He loves the ones that paint him in a positive light, and, of course, he hates all those “fake” ones that don’t.

He’s going to absolutely adore this one.

According to Moody’s Analytics, Trump is headed toward another four years in the White House. And, if the numbers are right, it won’t even be close.

In fact, his Electoral College victory could very well be wider than the 304-227 margin he enjoyed over Democratic rival Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election.

Since 1980, Moody’s has managed to nail the outcome every time but once — like many, it didn’t see Trump coming.

“In our post-mortem of the 2016 presidential election model,” the report said, “we determined that unexpected turnout patterns were one of the factors that contributed to the model’s first incorrect election prediction.” Here’s Moody’s track record, including a 2016 adjustment for the turnout variable:

Will it return to its winning ways? The team takes into account how consumers feel about their finances, the performance of the stock market SPX, +1.00% and their job prospects. Essentially, today, they’re feeling pretty good.

“Under the current Moody’s Analytics baseline economic outlook, which does not forecast any recession, the 2020 election looks like Trump’s to lose,” the authors wrote. “Democrats can still win if they are able to turn out the vote at record levels, but, under normal turnout conditions, the president is projected to win.”

From the MarketWatch archives (August 2016): To professional economists, Trump isn’t even the second best candidate in the 2016 presidential election

Moody’s uses three models to come up with its forecast. In each case, Trump gets at least 289 Electoral College votes.

The “pocketbook” measure, which focus on how people feel about their money situation, is where Trump shines brightest, grabbing a whopping 351 electoral votes. “If voters were to vote primarily on the basis of their pocketbooks, the president would steamroll the competition,” the report said.

The stock-market model gives him the slightest edge of 289-249, as investors continue to navigate a volatile investing landscape. Then there’s the unemployment model, which leans heavily in his favor at 332-206.



Majority of Americans back impeachment inquiry: Polls

Stephanie Grisham appointed new White House spokeswoman

The White House says the impeachment inquiry into President Trump is “baseless” and “unconstitutional.” Most Americans disagree.

Four new national polls released in the past two days show at least 50 percent of respondents support the House probe, which was triggered by a whistleblower’s complaint against Trump over his repeated requests for Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son.

And all four surveys found more Americans back the impeachment inquiry than do not.

• An NBC/Wall Street Journal poll found 55 percent of Americans believe that Trump’s actions “are a serious matter and merit an impeachment inquiry,” compared with 39 percent who do not. (Six percent were not sure.) What’s more, nearly a quarter of those polled (24 percent) say there is already enough evidence for Congress to impeach Trump and remove him from office.

• A Quinnipiac poll found 53 percent of registered voters support the impeachment inquiry, compared with 43 percent who do not. (Four percent were undecided.) The same survey found voters virtually split on Trump’s removal from office, with 45 percent saying he should be impeached and removed and 49 percent opposing the idea — a divide that falls within the poll’s margin of error.

• A Washington Post-Schar School poll found 58 percent of Americans endorse the decision by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to begin a formal impeachment inquiry into Trump, compared with 38 percent who do not. The same survey showed nearly half (49 percent) of the respondents believe the president should be removed from office, while 44 percent do not. The remaining 7 percent say they are undecided about his fate.

• A Politico/Morning Consult poll found 50 percent of registered voters would support removing Trump from office, while 43 percent oppose the idea. Again, 7 percent of voters were undecided. Oddly, the survey found a higher percentage of respondents “strongly” supporting Trump’s removal (40 percent) than “strongly” supporting the inquiry itself (38 percent).


The latest polls were conducted following a flurry of developments in the impeachment probe. Last week, it was reported that Trump also pressured Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison for information in an effort to discredit former special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia probe. Then, while speaking to reporters on the White House lawn, Trump called on China to investigate the Bidens.

The new surveys come on the heels of a half-dozen others that not only showed growing support for the impeachment inquiry but also support for the president’s removal from office.

Early Tuesday, the State Department blocked Gordon Sondland, U.S. ambassador to the European Union and a central player in the Ukraine controversy, from testifying before House committees probing impeachment. Defending the move on Twitter, Trump called the Democrat-led panels a “totally compromised kangaroo court.” House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff said he would consider it “additional strong evidence of obstruction.”

The White House then sent an eight-page letter to Pelosi calling the impeachment inquiry unconstitutional, setting up a legal showdown between Trump and Congress.



Newly Revealed Trump Administration Texts On Ukraine Appear To Show Clear Quid Pro Quos

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Trump’s call with the leader of Ukraine has prompted an impeachment inquiry as Democrats condemn what they call brazen efforts to extract political favors.

Newly released text messages sent by senior Trump administration officials appear to show clear instances of the White House brazenly pressuring Ukraine for political favors in exchange for cooperation from the U.S. government.

The texts were released late Thursday by the chairs of three House committees, who wrote in a letter to colleagues that they had “grave concerns” after speaking with State Department officials as part of the chamber’s unfolding impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump’s July 25 call with the leader of Ukraine. The three chairs wrote that the shocking texts were “only a subset of the full body of materials” that had been obtained, the entirety of which they planned to release in the coming days.

The text message were largely sent by Gordon Sondland, the U.S. ambassador to the European Union, and Kurt Volker, who was until last month the State Department’s special envoy to Ukraine, to Andriy Yermak, a top aide to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

In one instance that appears to be an overt quid pro quo, Volker texted Yermak just hours before the two presidents were set to speak. In the message, Volker said the White House would work to “nail down the date for [a] visit to Washington” but only on the assumption that “President Z convinces trump he will investigate/‘get to the bottom of what happened’ in 2016.”

Trump’s July 25 call with Zelensky has become the flashpoint for a Democratic impeachment inquiry after a reconstruction of the call showed multiple instances of Trump pressuring his counterpart to investigate a prime political rival, former Vice President Joe Biden, and his son Hunter.

In the texts, Yermak later wrote that the call  “went well” and that Trump and Zelensky had agreed on a visit to the U.S. Later in August, however, Yermak pressed Volker to nail down the date, saying that once it was locked in, Ukrainian officials would outline their “vision for the reboot of US-Ukraine relationship, including among other things Burisma and election meddling in investigations.”

Hunter Biden served on the board of Burisma, a Ukrainian energy company, for five years, ending in early 2019.

Yermak also texted Volker at the end of August expressing concern about a report Trump was withholding military aid to Ukraine. Trump canceled a planned visit to Poland to meet Zelensky a day later.

The text messages also show concern among some Trump administration officials. In multiple instances, Bill Taylor, the top U.S. diplomat to Ukraine, expressed worry that the White House was withholding military aid until any investigations into Biden were launched.

“Are we now saying that security assistance and WH meeting are conditioned on investigations?” Taylor asked Sondland on Sept. 1. Sondland later replied “call me,” and it’s unclear what the pair discussed.

But the issue came up again a week later: “As I said on the phone, I think it’s crazy to withhold security assistance for help with a political campaign,” Taylor texted Sondland on Sept. 9, saying diplomacy had moved into his “nightmare scenario.”

Sondland later rejects that characterization, saying Trump had “been crystal clear no quid pro quo’s of any kind.”

The texts were attached to a letter condemning Trump’s effort to minimize his call with Ukraine. It was signed by Democratic Reps. Adam Schiff (Calif.), chair of the House Intelligence Committee; Eliot Engel (N.Y.), chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee; and Elijah Cummings (Md.), who chairs the House Oversight and Reform Committee.

The lawmakers expressed worry about the White House effort to delegitimize the impeachment inquiry, saying the Trump administration was “engaging in a campaign of misinformation and misdirection in an attempt to normalize the act of soliciting foreign powers to interfere in our election.”

Trump has vehemently rejected claims that he did anything improper, referring to the inquiry as a “coup.” On Thursday, the president publicly urged China to investigate the Bidens just moments after saying that “if they don’t do what we want, we have tremendous power.”

In the letter, the chairmen urged their colleagues to reject such claims, calling them “unethical, unpatriotic and wrong.”

“We hope every Member of the House will join us in condemning in the strongest terms the President’s now open defiance of our core values as American citizens to guard against foreign interference in our democratic process,” they wrote.

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