Trump can win. There seems to be a growing consensus that the billionaire who often goes off the cuff can win this election. From President Obama, who said on the "Today" show that “anything is possible,” to…Mitt Romney? Romney has been a high-profile member of the Never Trump crowd, and one of his harshest critics; he said that Trump could bring about “trickle down racism.” Yet, the former 2012 candidate and Massachusetts governor (who got Trump's endorsement in 2012) said that it wouldn’t be a landslide (via
Romney was speaking with Republican consultant Mike Murphy’s Radio Free GOP podcast released two weeks ago when he made the comments.
“You have to give Donald Trump credit, he was able to bring a rhetoric and a style that he had perfected over his career to the political sphere and connect with people and become the nominee,” Romney said. “Despite the fact that I and a lot of other people thought he would not be an ideal nominee, he is. At this stage, it’s rougher going, but I can’t predict what’s gonna happen.”
“To be honest, it’s very possible in my view that Trump wins,” continued Romney. “I wouldn’t think it’d be by a landslide, but I think he could win. I think he could lose, I think he could lose by a landslide. But, I don’t know which it’s going to be and a lot of that depends on what happens to Hillary Clinton. Is there a meltdown moment, or some implosion of some kind?”
On Monday, FiveThirtyEight had Trump beating Clinton in an Electoral College landslide if the election were held on July 25. After the Democratic Convention, Trump would still win if the election were held today—July 30—but just squeaking by Clinton 272/264. While Trump surely has his faults, more Americans think he’s honest. Clinton has been marred by scandal over her emails, which is a driving factor that’s killing her favorable and trustworthiness numbers with voters. On top of that, almost 30 percent of Bernie Sanders supporters could go third party is she isn’t successful reaching out to the coalition (i.e. young people). At the same time, the Trump camp seems to be playing this thing out as if this 2016 contest is an extension of the primaries. It’s not.
In terms of the Electoral College, the Democratic blue wall already nabs them at close to 240 of the 270 delegates needed to win. As with any election, turnout will be key, with the high-level of animosity aimed at both respective candidates from their party bases being a key factor in that effort. One thing the Trump does have on his side is the ability to change Washington. Whether you love him or hate him, more voters thinks he’s a person who can shake up D.C.—though those voters have not definitively crossed over into his camp. If they do, expect a surge for Trump that could land him in the White House. It’s an unpredictable year—but even some of Trump’s most brutal critics are saying he can win.