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Todd Blodgett of Clear Lake Iowa is an accomplished writer and political strategist. He has been the most-popular writer in the history of the Globe Gazette, been published in numerous news publications, and has written a book, “Republican Crackhead.”

In 2016, Donald Trump annihilated the so-called Blue Wall, which was to have assured Hillary Clinton’s victory. In 2020, he’ll likely carry each state he won then, and is more likely to snag some states he lost than lose any state he won. Biden may pick off Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Arizona. But that’s unlikely, and even if he somehow gets those three and holds every state Hillary won, he’d barely edge Trump in the electoral college. So, aside from running the table, what’s old Joe’s game plan? The two presidential candidates to lose 49 states were George McGovern and Walter Mondale. They were clobbered, respectively, by Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan- whose effective appeal to blue-collar workers scuttled any chance of a Democratic victory. Trump won’t win 49 states, but his tremendous support among blue-collar voters, including millions of unionized employees, is his ‘trump’ card.

Biden hopes his blue-collar background can somewhat mitigate Trump’s substantial reach into the realm of average, workaday voters. But Trump is proving that even as his pool of voters shrinks – due to ever-accelerating demographic changes which hurt Republicans – he nets an increasing share of a diminishing milieu. What undermines Biden, aside from himself, is Trump’s agenda, and how he sells it. In 2016, blue-collar workers who’d never supported ANY presidential candidates slapped Trump bumper stickers on their vehicles and placed his yard signs on their property. Some ladies even wore a T-shirts with the message: “Donny, you can grab mine!”, referencing Trump’s controversial conversation with Billy Bush.

Can former Vice President Joe Biden grab victory this November?

These voters respect leaders who understand their concerns and stand up for them. They don’t care if Trump is labeled a racist, and aren’t worried about his crude tweets and politically incorrect statements. Reagan and Nixon counted ‘Joe & Jane Six-Pack’ among their strongest supporters, but for them, such voters were frosting on the cake. Their base chiefly consisted of Republicans and Independents, many with college degrees and most with above-average incomes. But with Trump, these voters ARE the cake. So, what’s his secret? For decades, Presidents of both parties effectively did nothing about illegal aliens. Republicans wanted cheap labor for their corporate supporters, and Democrats viewed them as future voters. When Americans who were upset about jobs lost to illicit, cheap labor complained, their valid concerns were effectively ignored. Not so, with Trump. More than anything, his efforts to enforce existing immigration laws explain his iconic status among America’s working class. It’s not ‘racist’ to be upset with your own government for not having your back, and Trump is remedying that. Moreover, he’s doubled down, by championing the second amendment and appointing strict constructionist, pro-Law-and-Order Judges. Such moves have nailed down the votes of this decisive block of likely voters.

President Trump

The coronavirus outbreak, by November, will likely help Trump. That’s because Americans typically rally around Presidents in a crisis, and this pandemic will be no different. The Covid-19 pandemic has isolated Biden, who has trouble dealing with the audio-visual equipment rigged up in his basement. His recent ‘virtual Town Hall’ wasn’t merely awkward; it was a technical disaster. The former VP moved about, onscreen, while responding to questions; at one point, he shuffled totally out of the camera frame. “Am I on camera?” Biden asked an aide, while facing a live audience. Far from appearing even semi-presidential, Biden was more like a testy, semi-lucid octogenarian who should’ve stayed at the senior citizen center to play Bingo and quaff Ensure. Then there’s the fact that Biden is a globalist – which Trump, unequivocally, is not. With Covid-19, that’s yet another, MAJOR advantage for Trump.

Senator Bernie Sanders won’t have many more rallies to attend – he’s out of the race.

Mollifying supporters of Bernie Sanders and Liz Warren will hurt Biden, especially with some urban voters and registered Independents. That’s because even attempting to make inroads with such voters means taking positions which won’t resonate with blue collar workers in the rust-belt and swing states, or with most senior citizens, farmers, and small business owners where this election gets decided. After all, Trump proved that Trial lawyers, Soccer moms, Yuppies, Social Workers, and even high-income professionals in the suburbs aren’t as important as the average, everyday Joe and Jane Six-Pack.

To tens of millions of workaday US citizens, Donald Trump is like a rock star, or folk hero, whose iconic status will likely guarantee him victory. Labeling him as a racist denigrates tens of millions of Americans who need no convincing that most Democratic presidential aspirants are clueless. Anyone watching a Trump rally knows that the President’s adoring supporters are always there for him; that’s because he’s there for THEM. When Aeschines spoke, ancient Greeks swooned, and said, “How well he speaks!” But when Demosthenes addressed a crowd, they said, “Let’s march!” Trump may not be a polished speaker like Bill Clinton or Barack Obama, and no college professor would award him an ‘A’ in debate. But how he says what he says resoundingly resonates, and, unlike his opponent, Donald Trump is highly adept at reaching likely voters via the mass media – even from his house.

Clear Lake’s Todd Blodgett with President Ronald W. Reagan, 1981. Official WHITE HOUSE Photo.

Todd Blodgett served on the White House staff of President Ronald Reagan, and on the presidential campaign staff of President George H.W. Bush. He also worked for the Republican National Committee and the FBI. Mr. Blodgett, who lives in Clear Lake, and in Tyler, Texas, can be reached via his website: www.ToddBlodgett.US.

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