Political science has long tried to tackle a fundamental question of voter behavior: Do voters choose politicians because those politicians hold views that they like, or do voters choose policy positions because the politicians they like say those positions are correct?

Kristen Soltis Anderson

Kristen Soltis Anderson

Profession: Author
Nationality: American

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Feeling unsafe in your own home? Look no further than those terrorists and criminals and illegal immigrants who have been given free reign and on whom Trump says we need to 'get tough.'

In 2012, when Mitt Romney named Russia as our greatest geopolitical foe, Democrats scoffed and accused Republicans of trying to ignite a new Cold War.

I went to Washington, D.C, for the first time my senior year as part of Girls Nation, put on by the American Legion Auxiliary, which sends high school students to D.C. to form a pretend federal government. There was an energy about the city that made me feel like I just had to come back there.

With Trump assuming the role of America's CEO, it may be chaos rather than callousness that threatens to harm his standing with the American voters who are giving him a chance.

The data - on issues and on Trump himself - keep pointing back to 'one-in-four' as the true size of Trump's base. It is around one in four who like the tweeting, like the insults, the things other people say are mean or unproductive behavior.

I dreamed of being like Sam Seaborn on 'The West Wing'.

There's no question that a Democratic Congress plus a Trump presidency would equal gridlock. Nothing moves, nothing changes, nothing gets accomplished, nothing gets reformed. Voters know this.

On paper, Emmanuel Macron should be a candidate tailor-made for young voters. He himself is young. He pushes for more entrepreneurship, modernization, and a loosening of regulations that prevent young workers from working as they please when they please.

In the United States, it is unmistakable that young people have broken away from the political right and have gravitated to more leftist-populist figures like Bernie Sanders.

For Trump, the story is everything. There is no real plan to defeat the villains that Trump tees up, of course.

Election losses are always an inkblot test for partisans. If a candidate's defeat has no clear and obvious cause, if the data points are all over the map, it is easy for those on the sidelines to claim, 'Candidate X would have won if only he or she had been more like... me.'

Without a clear diagnosis of why the candidate or party failed, there can be no clear consensus about how to move forward.

In the 2012 election, the polls that had made Mitt Romney so confident that he was going to win were his own internal polls, based on models that failed to accurately estimate voter turnout. But the public polls, especially statewide polls, painted a fairly accurate picture of how the electoral college might go.

After Mitt Romney's defeat, the RNC released its official assessment of what happened - a failure to reach younger voters, nonwhite voters, women - but was met with a counter-narrative that, in fact, it was Romney's failure to be conservative enough that led to a depressed Republican base.