Donald Trump’s campaign manager suggested in a recent interview that Donald Trump may actually be winning the election even though the polls are telling a different story.
Kellyanne Conway, a pollster herself when she’s not running campaigns, told UK’s Channel 4 that Clinton’s lead is due to “cherry-picked polling numbers that are put out there by media outlets that are also bent on his destruction.” But — “Donald Trump performs consistently better in online polling where a human being is not talking to another human being about what he or she may do in the election.”
She added, “It’s because it’s become socially desirable, if you’re a college educated person in the United States of America, to say that you’re against Donald Trump.” That has led to what Conway calls the “undercover” or “hidden” Trump vote. “The hidden Trump vote in this country is a very significant proposition,” she insisted.
“Have you been able to put a number on that?” the interviewer asked.
“Yes,” Conway confidently replied.
“What do you think that is?”
“I can’t discuss it,” she answered. “It’s a project we’re doing internally. I call it the undercover Trump voter, but it’s real.”
As you can imagine, not everyone is buying Conway’s theory about “undercover Trump voters.”
For instance, political statistician Nate Silver seemed to be ridiculing Conway when he tweeted:
"Polls miss our voters' enthusiasm, as you can see at giant rallies!"
"Our voters are too ashamed to admit they're supporting us!"
— Nate Silver (@NateSilver538) August 24, 2016
But I don’t know why both propositions can’t be true.
There has been an enthusiasm gap between Trump’s campaign rallies and all other campaign rallies since he entered the race. There should be no doubt that Trump garners the most enthusiasm from voters. That doesn’t mean that there aren’t a lot of Republican voters who supported other candidates during the primaries who are quietly and reluctantly supporting him now. Never-Trumpers have staked out a moral high ground of defending conservatism, while the mainstream media never misses an opportunity to attack and ridicule the candidate. This makes it hard for Republicans who moved over to Trump after the primaries to come out of the closet. Most of these Never-Hillary voters’ eyes are wide open about Trump’s manifest flaws, but they are more concerned about how the country will be able to recover after the unprecedentedly corrupt harridan takes over and stacks the Supreme Court with fellow leftists than about what sort of unpleasant surprises might be in store in a Trump presidency. They understand the stakes and do not like the Sophie’s choice before them, but in the end, they’ll know what to do in the voting booth. They just maybe don’t want to talk a whole lot about it.