2020 election: Conservative pollster warns about the ‘hidden vote’ as he predicts a Trump victory

Danielle Zoellner
·2 min read
Conservative pollster Robert Cahaly has predicted a Donald Trump victory come 3 November (Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)
Conservative pollster Robert Cahaly has predicted a Donald Trump victory come 3 November (Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

Trafalgar Group chief pollster Robert Cahaly, who made headlines in 2016 for being one of the few pollsters to predict Donald Trump’s victory, has said the sitting president is on track to win reelection.

The conservative pollster appeared on Fox NewsHannity on Tuesday evening where he discussed the “hidden vote” that was often missing predominantly from polling showing Democratic challenger Joe Biden leading nationally and in certain swing states.

“I see the president winning with a minimum high 270s and possibly going up significantly higher based on just how big this undercurrent is,” Mr Cahaly said, referring to Electoral College votes a candidate needs to win the presidency.

“What we’ve noticed is that these polls are predominantly missing the hidden Trump vote. There is a clear feeling among conservatives and people that are for the president that they’re not interested in sharing their opinions readily," he said. "These people are more hesitant to participate in polls. So if you’re not compensating for this, you’re not going to get honest answers.”

In 2016, Mr Cahaly was one of the few pollsters to predict the president winning key battleground states like Pennsylvania and Michigan. Mr Trump then surpassed that prediction by winning Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin – a feat not done by a Republican presidential candidate in decades.

Most polls currently show Mr Biden with a substantial lead of about nine to 10 points ahead of the sitting president nationally. Additionally, Mr Biden has held a lead in the battleground states of Arizona, Florida, Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin.

However, Mr Cahaly predicted that the president will hold Florida, Georgia, Ohio, and North Carolina given the slim lead Mr Biden currently holds did not factor in the “hidden vote”. Winning these states would help the president on his path to victory.

The signs are showing a Biden campaign victory, with FiveThirtyEight giving Mr Biden an 88 per cent chance of winning come 3 November, but Democrats remain jaded by the 2016 election.

This hesitancy to declare victory early comes as FiveThirtyEight was also predicting an 87 per cent chance Hillary Clinton would win around this same time in 2016.

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