‘Anything could happen,’ and it did. But political dynamics did not budge

Political Theater, Episode 125

A voter casts a ballot at a drop box in Baltimore on April 28 in the special election in Maryland’s 7th District. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)
A voter casts a ballot at a drop box in Baltimore on April 28 in the special election in Maryland’s 7th District. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call file photo)
Jason Dick
Posted May 6, 2020 at 3:26pm

We are less than six months away from Election Day, and the last few months have already seen an impeachment trial of President Donald Trump and a deadly coronavirus pandemic sweep the globe. Electorally, though, we face much the same dynamics as before those epically historic events.

“I think there was a clear trend before the coronavirus when it came to political handicapping. And that’s that you spend all this time analyzing data and you give your best projections and you say, ‘Well, anything could happen,’ just to cover yourself or to use it as a crutch,” says CQ Roll Call elections analyst Nathan L. Gonzales, the publisher of Inside Elections.

So, the “anything” happened. Now what?

“Nothing really changed, in terms of electorally. Our lives have changed. Our day-to-day lives have changed. But politically, not a lot of voters’ minds have changed about who they’re going to support for president, and I think that has a fundamental impact on even what the down-ballot issues are going to look like,” Gonzales continues.

For our conversation in the latest Political Theater podcast, we delve into some of the states, like Arizona, that feature not just a competitive presidential contest but a potentially majority-determining Senate race. We also talk about some of the broader things we’ve been keeping an eye on, like fundraising, polling and even, God help us, what this might mean for the 2022 elections.

Show Notes