President Trump’s campaign told Time magazine this week that its strategy for reelection relies on stoking turnout among his base. If that’s true, the president is much likelier to lose than many Republicans think.
Turnout-based strategies have become all the rage in recent years. With data showing increasing polarization among voters, many strategists think persuading swing voters is passe. Better to give a smaller group of voters exactly what they want to hear, drive up their enthusiasm and, thereby, raise the likelihood that they will vote.
The data, however, don’t support this approach. For all the talk about how enthusiasm last year among the Democratic base was way up, a recent analysis shows Democrats would not have won the House without persuading millions of former Republicans and independent voters to back them.