Republican operatives are terrified that the GOP base actually believes all the lies spouted by Trump.
Trump is deluding his base by painting an overconfident picture of Republicans gaining seats in the House of Representatives, and Republican operatives are terrified because the GOP base is buying it.
A private RNC poll obtained by Bloomberg shows Trump's outlandish statements could actually reduce GOP turnout in November and lead to more and bigger Democratic wins.
"President Trump’s boasts that a 'red wave' could increase Republican majorities appear to have lulled GOP voters into complacency, raising the question of whether they’ll turn up at the polls," reports Bloomberg. "If overconfident Republican voters stay home, Democrats could win a landslide."
The prospect that the GOP base actually believes Trump is telling the truth has Republican operatives scrambling. "We need to make real the threat that Democrats have a good shot of winning control of Congress," says the private RNC poll.
Most reputable pollsters believe Democrats will gain seats in the November midterms, and many expect Democrats will pick up at least 23 seats in the House of Representatives to gain control of that chamber.
Yet, as Bloomberg notes, Trump is preaching the exact opposite. He is touting confidence that Republicans will expand their majority, "contrary to conventional wisdom and polling," notes Bloomberg.
The Republican base believes Trump and dismisses contradictory information from neutral observers. After all, the poll asks, "Why should they believe the same prognosticators who told them that Hillary was going to be elected President?"
Yet the base seems willing to believe Trump, who has told more than 4,200 lies during his short tenure in the White House.
The internal GOP poll is not the first warning sign to Republicans. Last month, Axios reported on Republican focus groups that mirrored Trump's confidence.
"That’s not going to happen, that’s stupid," is how one Republican strategist described the GOP base reacting to the notion that Democrats would take control of the House.
Evidence of Democratic enthusiasm abounds in the data from special elections in the Trump era. An analysis from NPR shows the average vote in each of those special elections was 10 points better for Democrats than in the 2016 election. If those margins are applied nationwide in November, Democrats would gain more than 60 House seats.
If Trump's fanciful predictions depress Republican turnout, he could help usher in a massive electoral wave ... just not the one he predicted.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.