Trump’s Change in Campaign Strategy Might Be His Downfall.

A lot’s changed since 2016, and Trump’s new ways of appealing to voters just isn’t working.

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Yuri Gripas/Abaca/Bloomberg via Getty Images

As I’ve said many times before, under what we might consider to be “normal” circumstances, I firmly believe presumptive Democratic nominee and former Vice President Joe Biden would not have a chance against Donald Trump. But as the coronavirus pandemic and the resulting fallout continues to affect lives all across the country, with over 130,000 people dead, polling consistently seems to indicate that the current occupant of the White House may indeed be voted out in November. While it will be incredibly satisfying to see him potentially leaving office in just a matter of months, I can’t help taking notice of how drastically different his campaign style has been in comparison to 2016, and part of me has begun to wonder if that might be contributing to what could be a massive loss in November.

In 2016, as dangerous and vile as his campaign might have been, there’s no denying that he touched on some substantive issues, coupled with the fact that he undeniably had his finger on the populist sentiment that’s only continued to become more . While it has been frankly difficult not to focus on the racism and xenophobia so prevalent with his platform, looking back it’s easy to forget that aside from building the wall, he promised to end wars in the Middle East, railed against the establishment, vowed to “drain the swamp”, and promised to protect American jobs. Perhaps even more importantly, he made a point of identifying Hillary Clinton’s corruption and elitism.

As ridiculous as he might have sounded, it worked. Far better — it seems — than his campaign rhetoric today, which is little more than arguing for the defense of statues, the economy will bounce back, and antifa is bad.

It feels as though the President has become so consumed with the thought of the upcoming election and doing everything he can to ensure he has another four years in office, he seems to be straying away from what actually got him there in the process. While of course there is a certain segment of the American population that will vote for and support him no matter what, it appears as though Trump has been unable to once again appeal to the independent voters so critical for electoral success.

Aside from the pandemic and the fact that he has strayed from any shred of substance in his messaging, part of me can’t help at least hoping that part of the reasoning for the steady decline in his support might have to do with the fact that his racism has only grown more and more overt with time. There’s no denying the fact that using Nazi imagery in his campaign ads has taken away any plausible deniability anyone who might want to conveniently overlook his racism while reasoning why they might vote for him.

A lot can certainly change in four months, but it’s been refreshing as it is fascinating to watch Trump’s growing desperation cloud what had once been somewhat decent political instincts. His intense fear of failure — whether his campaign team would be willing to admit it or not — no doubt has prompted him to forget that he cannot win this election with just his core supporters. Years have gone by since he was elected in to office, and hoping that people will overlook the fact that he has nothing positive to show for it is not going to work.

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Lauren is a writer & leftist with analysis on topics related to politics & policy. She can be reached at or Twitter @xlauren_mx

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