Thanks, Gretchen: Poll shows Trump taking the lead in Michigan

Is the great swing-state flip to Trump finally happening?

Sure looks like a ‘maybe’ at least, based on a new poll out on the voter sentiment in Michigan.

According to the Daily Caller:

The president carries a narrow 46-45 lead Biden in the state, a poll published by the Trafalgar Group shows. The poll, conducted between Aug. 14 and Aug. 23, comes a day after Trump wrapped up the Republican National Convention, and less than a week after the Democratic National Convention.

The poll surveyed 1,048 respondents and carries a margin of error of 2.9 percentage points. More than 40% of the people the firm polled were between the ages of 45 and 64, and white people made up 81% of respondents.

The Daily Caller reports the news with skepticism, citing the polling firm’s mediocre track record and the fact that the GOP had pulled its ads in Michigan in June, suggesting that its internal polling showed a hopeless picture.

In contravention to that, other polls, such as this one from CNBC/Change Research, show that Trump has gained in six battleground states in the wake of the Democratic convention. That’s before the GOP convention and the latter is expected to give Trump yet another bounce.

Michigan’s governor, Gretchen Whitmer, who chairs Biden’s reelection campaign in that state, sounds like she’s a believer:

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said Democratic nominee Joe Biden shouldn’t trust polls showing he has a strong lead in Michigan, arguing her state is “definitely a tossup” and will be a “dogfight” in the 2020 presidential race.

Whitmer appeared on MSNBC before her speech at the Democratic National Convention Monday night when she was asked about an MLive report about recent polls in Michigan. The governor said she agrees with other Democrats who warned Biden not to take the state for granted, considering polls had similarly shown President Donald Trump faced an uphill battle before he narrowly won Michigan in 2016.

What’s Biden’s election strategy? Well, staying in his basement and taking Michigan for granted, which would explain why she sounds worried. Trump’s 11,000-margin of victory in Michigan in 2016 was attributed, by Democrats at least, to faulty get-out-the-vote organization.

Michigan has its urban and rural cultures, with basic urban-blue / rural red dynamics, yet there are a few little anomalies: Grand Rapids is a beautiful small city which tends to vote red, some parts of the rural Upper Peninsula, Muskegon, and Manistee tend to vote blue. Rural Cadillac is fiercely red, leftist university town Ann Arbor is never going to be anything but blue. Detroit, which is urban, and unioned-up, often dominates as big blue. Yet it curiously had very little in the way of riots that other cities had, mainly out of a been-there-done-that sensibility – they know that riots will set a city back decades because it happened to them.

Michael Moore, the soul of Flint, a rabid leftist, and a historically accurate prognosticator, warns that Michigan is on track to vote red, too, citing polls and says it goes for Minnesota, too.

Here are his hysterical ravings as reported by The Hill:

"Are you ready for a Trump victory? Are you mentally prepared to be outsmarted by Trump again? Do you find comfort in your certainty that there is no way Trump can win? Are you content with the trust you’ve placed in the DNC [Democratic National Committee] to pull this off?" Moore wrote in a Facebook post on Friday.

"I’m warning you almost 10 weeks in advance. The enthusiasm level for the 60 million in Trump’s base is OFF THE CHARTS! For Joe, not so much," he added. "Don’t leave it to the Democrats to get rid of Trump. YOU have to get rid of Trump. WE have to wake up every day for the next 67 days and make sure each of us are going to get a hundred people out to vote. ACT NOW!"

If Moore and Whitmer are concerned, one can only guess what their internals are telling them.

There’s also Whitmer herself who may be a factor in moving Michigan red. Does anyone really believe the polls out there that claim Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is popular? Supposedly, she is, but in light of her harsh measures to keep the economy shut, schools closed, her husband’s corrupt bid to jump the queue for a boat ride in a partial reopening, her persistent orders to seed nursing homes with COVID patients, and her constant fighting with President Trump, it’s very hard to understand why she would be. Some of that might rub off onto support for President Trump.

Biden himself is a problem, too, not just in hiding but in his disrespectful treatment of a Michigan voter when he does come out, telling a Michigan autoworker 'you're full of sh**!' when he asked Biden about the Second Amendment, Midwest-wise, he also abused an old Iowa farmer, who asked him a tough question. Instead of answer the question, Biden challenged the voter to pushups during the primary, calling him ‘Hey, fat!’ Both incidents are likely to disgust voters in Michigan.

Historically, Michigan has always been the toughest of the battleground states to flip red – Wisconsin and Minnesota have been just a little easier. But a poll like this Trafalgar one, even if imperfect does say something when coupled with other factors.

Could Michigan turn red? Nobody should get cocky, but that poll was just the latest in a string of flashing red lights suggesting so.

Image credit: SpeedMcCool, via Wikimedia Commons // CC BY-SA 4.0