Donald Trump may lose the election in 2020 thanks to a subset of Republican voters that the party largely ignores: so-called “progressive” Republicans with economic views more in line with Democrats.
As Yahoo Finance reports, a recent poll of 7,000 likely voters showed that a small, but significant, number of Republican voters may wind up tipping the scales in favor of whoever winds up being Trump’s Democrat opponent in 2020. That subset of Republican voters consists of low-income voters disappointed in the policies of the Trump administration and whose economic views on things such as income inequality and minimum wage don’t square with traditional fiscal conservatism.
Trump was elected in 2016 at least in part because of low-income conservatives in places such as Appalachia or large swaths of the Midwest frustrated with a political apparatus that they believed had ignored them for decades. However, years into the Trump administration, things don’t appear to have turned around for poorer conservatives. Trump’s tax cuts are largely seen to have benefited mostly, if not exclusively, the wealthy, as Forbes notes.
For these reasons, and others, some voters who self-identify as Republicans are identifying more with Democrats when it comes to fiscal issues.
Specifically, a small, but not insignificant, percentage of likely Republican voters — 33 percent — supports raising taxes on the incomes of Americans earning over $200,000 per year; by contrast, that’s a position favored by 82 percent of voters identifying as Democrat.
This is THE prototypical mainstream media article about @BernieSanders, dripping with sarcasm & mockery. It's hard not to loathe these protectors of the status quo posing as "journalists." And they claim they're not biased. Hilarious! @IsaacDovere reports: https://t.co/H0c2dm1kqW— Cenk Uygur (@cenkuygur) June 13, 2019
Similarly, 29 percent support raising the minimum wage; 44 percent support paid parental leave; and 36 percent support breaking up big banks.
Traditionally, such policies have been the purview of Democrats, not the more traditionally conservative Republicans.
Also on the minds of Republican voters is access to health care. Although the recent poll being discussed here didn’t specifically mention health care, many low-income conservatives lack access to affordable health care. Almost every 2020 Democratic candidate has made easing access to health care, in one form or another, part of their platform. That may very well play a role in switching some Republican votes over to the Democrat side.
In fact, that subset of “progressive” Republican voters dissatisfied with Trump may amount to about one percentage point in the overall vote. As Yahoo Finance writer Rick Newman notes, that may not seem like much, but in some states, such as Michigan, Trump won by a lower margin.
Meanwhile, other polling suggests that Trump may not win in 2020, regardless, as most of the major Democrat candidates would beat Trump if the election were held today, according to recent polls.