The Atlantic

How Not to Lose to Donald Trump

A winning 2020 candidate needs three things: authenticity, credibility, and viability.
Source: Jonathan Ernst / Reuters

Few could have predicted that President Donald Trump would be this good at surrendering the political advantage of a strong economy. Not only is he now underwater in the three states that pushed him to victory in 2016—he’s now unexpectedly vulnerable in places such as Texas, Florida, and Ohio as well. His popularity rises to 50 percent or higher in states that total a mere 102 electoral votes. Probably of more concern to his campaign: He’s fallen below 40 percent approval in states encompassing a 201-electoral-vote bloc.

But Democrats haven’t won the 2020 election yet—and we’ve got a long way to go. At this stage in the 1992 election cycle, President George H. W. Bush was riding high, buoyed

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