Stop me if you’ve seen a headline (or five) that proclaims something along the lines of: “Most Trump voters still support Trump.” Typically, the article includes quotes from Trump voters in Pennsylvania or Michigan. Sometimes it revolves around polling showing people don’t “regret” voting for Trump. The takeaway is usually: Trump still has the support of his base, which means Democrats haven’t cracked the Trump nut yet.
But here’s the thing: Democrats don’t need to crack that nut by 2018; Trump can hang on to most — if not all — of his base, and Democrats could still clean up in the midterm elections…
Let’s start with the basic fact that Trump won just 45.9 percent of the vote in 2016. That doesn’t make his victory any less legitimate — winning (the Electoral College) with a plurality rather than a majority is still winning — but Trump has a smaller base than every president elected since 1972, except for Bill Clinton in 1992. Trump voters are not a majority.
More importantly for the sake of 2018, they don’t represent the majority of voters in the majority of congressional districts. Trump won more than 50 percent in 205 of 435 districts. If House Republicans won every district where Trump won a majority in 2016 but lost every other one, Democrats would control 230 seats. Among seats won by a Republican in 2016, Trump fell short of a majority in 40 districts. Democrats need to win only 24 of those to win control of the House.
As Enten notes at the beginning of his article, recent polling shows Trump voters still overwhelmingly support Trump. And Enten’s review of the last eight midterm elections shows the GOP will hold them, because Trump voters are rank and file GOP…..