After the Republican National Convention, Democrats were hyperventilating because Donald Trump got a bit of a bounce that showed him pulling even with Clinton. This came at the same time as a dip for Clinton following the DNC hack “scandal.”
But then a few things happened: The Democrats had a brilliant and uplifting convention and Trump picked a fight he couldn’t possibly win with the parents of a slain Marine. And just like that, Trump’s bump disappeared and he plummeted in the polls while Hillary got a fairly large boost.
So now, fivethirtyeight.com has Hillary’s chances of winning at 65.4% with Florida now leaning blue and North Carolina coming perilously close to being in play:
As you can see from the map, there’s reason to be optimistic but not wildly so. While she has a comfortable lead in Nevada, Colorado, Pennsylvania and Virginia, Hillary’s lead in Iowa, Ohio and Florida is pretty thin. Remember, the goal is not just beat Trump, but to utterly crush him. Anything less than a massive defeat will legitimize everything horrible thing he’s said and done throughout this campaign. And that would be a disaster.
Think of it this way: If Hillary only wins by the same kind of margin the last couple of presidents have won by, it will mean that the conservative movement in America will literally vote for the most horrible, ugliest and repulsive person imaginable short of a child molesting serial killer as long as they have an (R) next to their name. This will mean that the Republican Party will never be able to recover from Trump. They will be forced to offer up the most extreme candidates they can find to appease a rabidly racist base and destroy their electoral future.
While this may sound great in the short run, the damage to race relations in America is staggering and real people are being hurt and killed because of Trump’s unhinged rhetoric. Without an overwhelming rejection of the toxic hate Trump has been spewing, our politics is going to get a whole lot uglier.
Featured image by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images