JERUSALEM — During my three-week speaking tour through the U.S., and certainly in the two weeks since I’ve been back here in Israel, the number one question I’m being asked by those who want the Trump-Pence ticket to be re-elected is: Do they have any shot at all?
My short answer is: Yes.
1) Biden and Harris definitely have the upper hand
2) It’s going to be a battle for every single vote
3) It’s also going to take an enormous amount of prayer and hard work — and a miracle.
It happened in 2016. Could it happen again?
“Nothing is impossible with God.” (Luke 1:37)
But let’s be honest — Trump is his own worst enemy.
Trump’s debate performance, many of his Tweets, and many of his off-the-cuff and unscripted remarks have been offensive and off-putting to a great many undecided voters — especially those in the key states that the Trump team absolutely must win.
By contrast, Pence’s debate performance, watched by more than 50 million Americans, was pitch perfect — substantive, calm, respectful, and sharply able to define the critical differences between the two tickets.
Side-note: If Israelis were decided the race, it would be Trump/Pence in a landslide. A poll published last week found that 63% of Israelis support Trump. Only Israelis support Biden. Upwards of 200,000 dual US-Israeli citizens are being aggressively courted here by the Trump and Biden camps because every vote really does count.
That said, the election will actually be decided in “battleground states” like Ohio, Florida, Iowa, Pennsylvania, and North Carolina, to name a few.
Here are 10 factors you should take into account when assessing the Trump-Pence ticket’s chances of success:
1. More Americans (49%) agree with Trump “on the issues” than agree with Biden (46%), according to a September Gallup poll.
2. 76% of Americans say they would not vote for a candidate that supports socialist policies, a Hill/Harris poll found in July.
3. A majority (54%) rate Trump positively for his job performance on the economy, according to a new October Gallup poll. This is important because according to Gallup, “nearly nine in 10 registered voters consider the presidential candidates’ positions on the economy ‘extremely’ (44%) or ‘very’ (45%) important to their vote.”
4. Trump’s strong rating in this area is, in part, because he’s a businessman, not a professional politician, whose tax cut and other pro-growth policies led to a roaring American economy and the lowest unemployment rate in 50 years before the pandemic. The U.S. has also gained a record 11.5 million new jobs since Trump began reopening the economy in the summer. Americans areincreasingly nervous that Biden keeps vowing to raise taxes — “The first thing I’d do is repeal the Trump tax cut,” he says over and over. Biden vows to “double the capital gains tax” on investments in new factories and new jobs to 40%. Experts says Biden’s approach would mean a $4 trillion tax increase and include a $2,000 tax hike on a median income family of four.
5. A majority (55%) consider themselves and their family to be better off than they were four years ago (Gallup). This is an astonishing number, given that it comes in the midst of the pandemic.
6. 78% of Evangelicals currently support Trump and Pence because they deeply appreciate their bold pro-life, pro-religious, pro-law-and-order, pro-Second Amendment, pro-Israel policies and all the promises that Trump and Pence have kept, according to an October 13th Pew poll. The problem is that this is down from 83% in August. Why? Because many Evangelicals were deeply disappointed by Trump’s debate performance. If Trump and Pence can get back to 83%, they have a real chance at winning, but it’s not going to be easy because 22 million Americans have already voted, including many Evangelicals.
7. After the Trump-Biden debate, the Rasmussen poll (arguably the most accurate presidential poll in 2016) had Biden winning by 12 points — but the newest Rasmussen survey finds that Trump is rapidly gaining ground and is only behind nationally by 5 points. Still, keep in mind that the Real Clear Politics average of national polls has Biden winning by a whopping 8.9%.
8. While most national polls show Biden in the lead decisively, the Real Clear Politics average of polling in the top battleground states has Biden only winning by 4.3% — significant, but not insurmountable. Consider just a few examples:
10. “Trump is winning the voter registration battle against Biden in key states,” read an NBC News headline on Oct. 1. “Of the six states Trump won by less than 5 points in 2016, four — Arizona, Florida, North Carolina and Pennsylvania — permit voters to register by party,” the article noted. “In all four states, voter registration trends are more robust for the GOP than four years ago.”
- FLORIDA — “In Florida, Republicans added a net 195,652 registered voters between this March’s presidential primary and the end of August, while Democrats added 98,362….”
- PENNSYLVANIA — “In Pennsylvania, Republicans added a net 135,619 voters between this June’s primary and the final week of September, while Democrats added 57,985…”
- NORTH CAROLINA — “In North Carolina, Republicans added a net 83,785 voters between this March’s presidential primary and the final week of September, while Democrats added 38,137…”
10. A massive movement of Evangelical prayer throughout the U.S. is pleading with God not only for revival and a Great Awakening but for mercy to maintain the pro-life, pro-freedom, pro-growth, pro-Israel policies that Trump and Pence are pursuing. Tens of millions of Evangelicals are also praying that the Lord will not to let Biden and Harris win and appoint pro-abortion federal judges and Supreme Court Justices, massively fund Planned Parenthood pro-abortion services, start taxpayer funding of abortion, restrict religious freedom, massively raise taxes, and completely undo and reverse all the pro-life, pro-growth and other progress that has been made in the past four years. In September, for example, Franklin Graham organized a prayer march in Washington that drew an estimated 50,000 Christians and was broadcast and webcast to millions. That same month, I spoke at three nationally webcast and broadcast events in the U.S. to call Evangelicals to pray 2 Chronicles 7:14 for America — one event was in Iowa, another was in South Dakota and a third was in Colorado. Other pastors and ministry leaders have likewise been rallying Christians to pray without ceasing for a nation facing implosion. Amen. This is a spiritual battle, above all, and prayer is vital.
BOTTOM LINE: I can make no predictions about what will happen on November 3. To be honest, I, too, was disappointed by President Trump’s debate performance and by the prospect that his behavior — not his policies — will cost us the election. And not just the presidency at risk, but control of the Senate, as well.
Still, despite having once been a Never Trumper, I am grateful for all the many promises the President has kept. I continue to pray daily for him and his family, for salvation, for changed character, for protection and wisdom. I traveled all the way to the U.S. to vote for Trump and Pence in person.
To be clear: I would rather vote for a deeply imperfect candidate who is working hard to save unborn babies, among other important goals, than for a deeply imperfect candidate who supports abortion on demand and taxpayer funding for this terrible evil.
So, even as I pray that the Lord will graciously change Mr. Trump’s character and soften his very rough edges, I am also praying that he and Pence will win and that they and all the Evangelicals around them will have four more years to keep trying to turn the ship of state back in the right direction.
I’m not going to slam and berate and mock those who take a different view. It’s a free country (so far). But that’s where I come down.
How about you — have you voted yet?
Are you mobilizing your family, friends and neighbors to get out to vote — immediately — not waiting for Election Day?
Are you praying without ceasing? I sure hope so.
Don’t. Give. Up.
(I wrote this column in my capacity as a private American citizen. These personal views have nothing to do with any of the non-profit, non-partisan organizations that I have founded or with which I am affiliated.)