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LostInParadise's avatar

If Trump is re-elected but loses the popular vote, will he be the only president to do this twice?

Asked by LostInParadise (27260points) 1 week ago

It seems pretty certain that Biden will do better than Clinton did in total number of votes. That would mean that Biden, like Clinton, will end up with a majority. If Trump manages to get a majority of electoral votes, that would be the second time that he won the election while losing the popular vote. I don’t think that anybody else has pulled this off twice. It seems strange that nobody seems to be thinking about this.

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21 Answers

zenvelo's avatar

It isn’t that “nobody is thinking about this”. That is the whole point of The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact.

A year ago, it appeared Trump might have built an electoral wall, picking up states in the Midwest he lost in 2016, but still without enough population to overcome the popular vote deficit.

Demosthenes's avatar

Yes, he would be the first. It would mean once again, white working class voters in the Rust Belt determine the outcome of the election and that they went for Trump. I think it’s also the case that only a Republican can win this way and it may be the only way a Republican can win.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Demosthenes Agreed. Bill Clinton’s success (in my opinion) with the popular vote was because he was from the middle, and we really liked him, regardless of party.

Clinton won a plurality in the popular vote and a majority of the electoral vote, breaking a streak of three straight Republican victories.-Wiki

The smaller states — which favored Bush in the 2000 election — are over-represented in the Electoral College. The 22 smallest states had a total of 98 Electoral votes, though their combined population was roughly equal to that of California which had only 54 Electoral votes. Of their 98 Electoral votes, 37 went for Gore while 61 went for Bush.
http://www.thirty-thousand.org/pages/section_IX.htm

JLeslie's avatar

I don’t think it has happened twice either. I never thought about it before, but does that mean more people voted for Bush the second time? Or, people just stayed home? I need to look that up.

I think Biden has a good chance, because I think the black vote is extremely energized and Michigan was a hot spot for coronavirus. I know the gun toting Trump supporters were out protesting the governor’s lockdown in Michigan, but most of my Republican friends in Michigan supported the governors efforts. I really think Michigan goes blue this time. Ohio has a good chance also. That creates a real problem for Trump.

I hope Biden starts talking about the economy and jobs for people and not obsessing about health and covid. A Democrat talking point seems to be accusing republicans of caring about money over lives, and I don’t think it’s a winner to harp on that. What America needs to know is what is their life going to be like moving forward living with covid floating around under Biden.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@JLeslie If you have time to read the full article I posted, it explains in detail. :)

LadyMarissa's avatar

According to this, yes it would be the first time…

Five U.S. presidents have taken office without winning the popular vote. In other words, they did not receive a plurality regarding the popular vote. They were elected, instead, by the Electoral College—or in the case of John Quincy Adams, by the House of Representatives after a tie in the electoral votes. They were:

Donald J. Trump, who lost by 2.9 million votes to Hillary Clinton in the 2016 election.
George W. Bush, who lost by 543,816 votes to Al Gore in the 2000 election.
Benjamin Harrison, who lost by 95,713 votes to Grover Cleveland in 1888.
Rutherford B. Hayes, who lost by 264,292 votes to Samuel J. Tilden in 1876.
John Quincy Adams, who lost by 44,804 votes to Andrew Jackson in 1824.

I’ve been told all my life that my vote counts. It appears to me that 2.9 million votes did NOT count in 2016 & ½ million votes did NOT count in 2000!!!

JLeslie's avatar

@KNOWITALL I skimmed it. I’m on my phone, no glasses, hard to read a long article I thought several states had already passed the electoral votes going to whatever the national popular vote is? I’ve always been in favor of getting rid of winner take all as a compromise and each state giving proportionate votes to their own popular vote. I don’t see why anyone would have a strong argument against that. I really liked the county mosaic map. I always say the electoral map that colors an entire state a single color is a bad visual.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@JLeslie Nope, only 15 states passed it. Kind of like Obamacare needing the healthy to support that system, this one needs 74 more electoral votes to be implemented. (Dated: 10/29/19)

Since its 2006 debut, the NPV Initiative has been
introduced at various times in all 50 state legislatures and
the Council of the District of Columbia. Since 2007, 15
states and the District of Columbia have joined the NPV
Compact. They are listed (1) by the year of adoption and
the order in which they adopted for years in which multiple
states joined; and (2) by the current number of electoral
votes per state. Together, they account for a total of 196
electoral votes, 72.6% of an electoral college majority, but
74 fewer than the 270 or more required by the compact
before the NPV could be implemented.
 Maryland (10), 2007;
 New Jersey (14), 2008;
 Illinois (20), 2008;
 Hawaii (4), 2008;
 Washington (12), 2009;
 Massachusetts (11), 2010;
 District of Columbia (3), 2010;
 Vermont (3), 2011;
 California (55), 2011;
 Rhode Island (4), 2013;
 New York (29), 2014;
 Connecticut (7), 2018;
 Colorado (9), 2019;
 Delaware (3), 2019;
 New Mexico (5), 2019; and
 Oregon (7), 2019.

https://crsreports.congress.gov/product/pdf/IF/IF11191

JLeslie's avatar

^^I think with time the electoral college will shift. More and more people are moving south, so some of the Southern states might eventually become purple rather than red. If enough of those people are from the northeast and New England that could get more electoral votes for Democrats.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@JLeslie Where did you see that more people are moving south and why are they doing that?

JLeslie's avatar

@KNOWITALL As a Floridian we are constantly told how our population grows and grows. Part is migration from other states, and part is from outside of the country. Some of it has to do with retirees seeking Warner weather, but we have a lot of jobs here too.

I see cities like Atlanta and Nashville that continue to attract people from all over the country because there is so much business there. Moreover, the South has purposely bid for businesses stating their lower taxes and lower cost of living overall. Once large businesses are there people move from all over the country.

We have had more people able to work from home for several years now, and they also can seek warmer, lower cost, places to live.

Since the 1960’s when central air conditioning became a widely available thing it has made the South more attractive.

Ok, so I also googled and here are some statistics.

This shows “net domestic migration“ between states, it’s an easy to read table under that heading: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_U.S._states_and_territories_by_net_migration

Also, I found this:
https://www.thespruce.com/map-shows-where-people-are-moving-2435876

KNOWITALL's avatar

@JLeslie Thanks, very interesting, especially that second link, I do love numbers!

JLeslie's avatar

@KNOWITALL Sure. It’s a slow process, and from the tables you can see it’s not all people moving in one direction. With covid it might change some of these patterns since people are seeing they can work more from home and it saves businesses a lot of money not to have large office expenses.

The city I live in is the fast growing in America. https://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/os-ne-the-villages-fastest-growing-us-metro-20190417-story.html It’s not a small city with easy to achieve high percentages. Now, we have 130,000 people. But, with covid, if we wind up having to keep closing our recreation centers and activities, maybe the housing sales will slow here? We are just starting to open the activities now. However, I just became aware of a couple who has covid in our wood shop club, so hopefully no one else has that they may have been in contact with here.

zenvelo's avatar

By the way, there is already a deep effort by rural state politicians and supporters to argue that the Popular Vote Interstate Compact would be unconstitutional,.

janbb's avatar

@KNOWITALL I believe the OP was talking about Hillary Clinton, not Bill, when he talked about who won the majority of the popular vote. We can ask him for clarification.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@janbb Oh I know, but Bill is the one who broke the 3x Republican streak due to his popularity here in the Midwest. :)

LadyMarissa's avatar

When I was a child, Georgia & South Carolina (NC also I think) were both blue states & proud of it. Then those yamn dankies moved south & look at us now

Patty_Melt's avatar

He isn’t going to lose the popular vote.
There is a shift taking place which the left did not expect. Biden brought a small piece of attention to it when he made that comment if you don’t vote Democrat, then you’re not black. A lot of places thought of as blue, where the left believe they can count on results in their favor, are getting wise to the ongoing rhetoric. They see that Democrats are not acting on their behalf, even when they get a black man into office. They see the numbers since Trump took office. They now know it isn’t just bad luck, or an accident of nature. They have been let down repeatedly by Democrats, and they now see a good POTUS can improve the lives of all, or at least most Americans.
The word is out there, and spreading fast.

LostInParadise's avatar

The polls have Biden doing better than Clinton. Link . Historically, the two candidates with the highest unfavorable ratings are Trump first and then Clinton. Biden has the advantage of not being either of them.

JLeslie's avatar

@Patty_Melt Really few and far between. I know black Republicans, but they are in extremely small numbers. Now, with the murder of George Floyd and covid19, you really aren’t going to see blacks flipping and voting for Trump.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Patty Shh, it’s supposed to be a surprise! Ha!

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