Monday, June 6, 2016

The presidential election...

...will be held on Tuesday, November 8, exactly five months from Wednesday. Where do we stand?

Tomorrow Hillary Clinton is expected to clinch the Democratic nomination with a victory in New Jersey, before the polls in California even close.

Forgetting the Electoral College for a minute, in which the Democrats have a big advantage, here are just a few numbers to put it all in perspective.

Donald Trump won the Republican nomination with 11,676,355 votes out of 28,055,109 cast (before tomorrow's contests). That's about 42 percent of the total. That's a plurality, of course, but only of a party that represents about 42 percent of the overall electorate. Or, only about nine percent of the roughly 126,000,000 votes cast in the 2012 presidential election. In other words, Mr. Trump will have to persuade almost 50 million more Americans to vote for him in the general to exceed Mitt Romney's total in 2012.

Now, admittedly, that's a little misleading. After all, Romney only garnered a little over 10 million votes (52 percent) in the Republican primary of 2012 and managed to take over 47 percent of the popular vote against President Obama. So the election will probably be a lot closer to 50/50 in November.

But right now, according to Election Betting Odds, Hillary has about a 70 percent chance of winning vs. less than 25 percent for Trump. And if last week -- in which Trump struggled while Hillary seemed to gain confidence -- is any indication, Clinton could even exceed Obama's 2012 margin.

P. S. I'll say last week was the one in which Donald Trump finally peaked.

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