Trump underperformed in majority of counties where he held rallies in during last two weeks of election campaign

James Crump
·4-min read
President Donald Trump speaks during a rally on 3 November 2020 in Grand Rapids, Michigan (Getty Images)
President Donald Trump speaks during a rally on 3 November 2020 in Grand Rapids, Michigan (Getty Images)

Donald Trump underperformed in a majority of the counties that he held rallies in during the final two weeks of the 2020 US election campaign.

Despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Mr Trump held 30 large rallies across the country in the last two weeks of the election campaign, as he trailed the now President-elect Joe Biden in several polls.

A report released by NBC News on Sunday showed that Mr Trump underperfromed in 25 of the 30 counties he visited in the final two weeks of the campaign, compared to the 2016 election.

The analysis showed that the president either won the 25 counties by a smaller percentage than in 2016, or saw the areas flip to the Democrats.

In Michigan, which flipped to Mr Biden in November’s election, Mr Trump lost five points in Ingham County, which includes Lansing, six points in Oakland County and nine points in Grand Traverse County.

While in Pennsylvania, which also flipped to the President-elect, Mr Trump had a worse result in three counties he visited, including Erie, which he lost by one point after winning the area in 2016.

Mr Trump visited Florida four times in the last two weeks of the election campaign, receiving a reduced vote share in one of the three counties he held rallies at, while making a marginal 0.1 per cent gain in another.

However, in Mimai-Dade, which he visited on the day before the election, Mr Trump made a significant 21.7 point gain from 2016. Florida was one of the only battleground states he defeated Mr Biden in on 3 November’s election.

NBC said that the data does not prove that Mr Trump’s rallies hurt his vote share in the counties, but confirmed that his appearances did not do enough to improve on his 2016 election performance in a majority of the areas he visited.

Although Mr Biden was declared the winner of the 2020 presidential election earlier this month, Mr Trump has yet to concede to the president-elect, despite officially launching the transition process.

The president and his campaign team have filed more than 30 unsuccessful lawsuits in battleground states that Mr Biden won. The Trump team has so far provided no definitive evidence of any voting irregularities.

Both Eric Trump and his wife Lara Trump have baselessly claimed that the size of the president’s campaign rallies illustrate that the election was rigged.

“Well I think whenever you look at this election it's become clear to people that something is very very wrong here.

“I think people have a hard time rationalising… how is it a guy like Joe Biden who throughout the course of his campaign could barely scrape together a dozen people at an event all of a sudden got 80 million people so inspired to vote for him,” Ms Trump said in an interview with Fox News last week.

She added: “You contrast that with what we have seen continually throughout the entire time that Donald Trump has been in office which is that he has continued to hold rallies and those rallies have attracted tens of thousands of people.”

While, the president’s middle son falsely tweeted: “Biden couldn’t get 10 people to a rally & went days without leaving his house.

“@realDonaldTrump received 11 million more votes than 2016, nearly doubled African American support - this was every stop, multiple times a day. This election was rigged from the beginning.”

However, in the report on Sunday, NBC News data analyst Dante Chinni suggested that the size of the rallies might have put off voters concerned by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

“While the crowds were visible sign of enthusiasm for Trump, there were much bigger, and less visible, groups of people who were not at the rallies and who may have seen them in a negative light,” he wrote.

Mr Chinni added: “If the goal of all the barn-storming was to inspire and turn out the Trump base, the data at least suggest the rallies may have stirred the president’s opposition as well.”

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