Economic Models Show President Trump on Track for 2020 Landslide Win

By Janita Kan
Janita Kan
Janita Kan
Janita Kan is a reporter based in New York covering the Justice Department, courts, and First Amendment.
March 21, 2019 Updated: March 21, 2019

Analysts say President Donald Trump is on track for a 2020 landslide victory. Their forecasts are based on economic models that have successfully predicted the right presidential victors in the past.

TrendMacrolytics, a research firm that predicted Trump’s 2016 election win, unveiled their model (pdf) for the upcoming presidential election on March 15, that predicts Trump will be re-elected by a margin of 294 electoral college votes if the election were held today. It also predicted that if the Republican candidate was someone else, like Mike Pence, that person would win by 214 electoral college votes.

Donald Luskin, the chief investment officer of TrendMacrolytics, told Politico that a booming U.S. economy is the main factor behind the prediction, coupled with the historic advantage for running again as the incumbent president.

“The economy is just so damn strong right now and by all historic precedent the incumbent should run away with it,” Luskin told the news website. “I just don’t see how the blue wall could resist all that.”

According to a Gallup poll released on March 5, 56 percent of Americans approve of how the president is handling the economy, which marked a new high for Trump. Not far behind was Trump’s handling of unemployment, where he gained an approval rating of 54 percent.

Meanwhile, Trump’s overall job approval numbers were recorded at 43 percent, roughly the same numbers as Gallop’s previous February poll.

Similarly, Yale economist and election forecaster Ray Fair also predicted Trump would win re-election on the basis of a flourishing economy and the incumbency advantage. He also predicted Trump would win in 2016 but missed on the president’s share of the popular vote, according to the news website.

“Even if you have a mediocre but not great economy—and that’s more or less consensus for between now and the election—that has a Trump victory and by a not-trivial margin,” Fair told Politico. He predicted that Trump would receive 54 percent of the popular vote compared to 46 percent for Democrats.

On his website, Fair wrote, “The current case is the best possible one for the Republicans according to the equation: President running again and no negative duration effect. In this case, it takes a weak economy to have the voting equation predict the Democrats getting close to 50 percent of the two-party vote.”

Epoch Times Photo
President Donald Trump at a Make America Great Again rally in El Paso, Texas, on Feb. 11, 2019. (Charlotte Cuthbertson/The Epoch Times)

The analysts warn, however, that their data only takes into account economic variables and historical trends but ignores factors like election polls and personal characteristics of candidates—which are other important considerations. For example, TrendMacrolytics’s model looks at key economic data such as gross domestic product growth, tax burden, disposable income, inflation, payrolls, and gas prices in order to predict election outcomes.

Analysts also warn that a lot could change from now until election day in 2020. They note that changes in the variables like an uptick in the unemployment rate could change how the election would go for Trump.

“The model’s forecast is likely to be very different on election day, 596 days from [March 18], as all six economic variables fluctuate,” TrendMacrolytics said in their report.

Luskin told Politico that “[the economy] would have to slow a lot to still be not pretty good,” but added that a sharp move in the wrong direction could change how voters would behave.

On March 18, a new CNN poll conducted by independent research firm SSRS, revealed that 71 percent of Americans think that the country’s economy is in good shape, which the highest number since February 2001 and the best rating Trump has received during his presidency—by two points. Meanwhile, 51 percent of Americans approved of the way Trump has handled the nation’s economy.

The Epoch Times Reporter Bowen Xiao contributed to this report.

Janita Kan
Janita Kan
Janita Kan is a reporter based in New York covering the Justice Department, courts, and First Amendment.