You can tell a lot about the course of an election by polls, and the endless drivel of the talking heads, but if you really want to gauge the sentiment of the voters, look at the yard signs. Except this year, there are very few of them.
Trump’s groundless game
Donald Trump just ran a campaign that will go down in history for many things, not the least of which is that he eschewed a ground game. He ran a virtual ground game, and even though he may not win this election, he may come close. That is revolutionary. No one ever thought that such a feat was possible. He proved them wrong. The strategy of campaign managers up to this point has always been to build a base of supporters in each state, open campaign offices, and build a strong ground game. Donald Trump has run a successful campaign without any of those trappings. It appears that in the age of Twitter and Facebook, you need a message that rings. And a billion dollars is not necessary if you have that message. Donald Trump’s campaign is a success because he spent very little money to get where he is today.
Hiding from Hillary
Hillary Clinton did run a ground game, and from what we hear, it was a solid one. But like Donald Trump, the signs are not there. Are voters hiding from their Hillary vote? There is a condition known as Clinton Exhaustion, characterized by a sheer dread of the next shoe to drop in the lives of the two most-squirrely politicians on the face of the earth. Regardless, like Donald Trump, faced with the alternative, both sides just hold their noses and vote. But a lot of people don’t make noise about their choice.
Which makes polling even more difficult than it usually is for the statistical crowd. Pollsters ask questions that are designed to bring out the truth of the voter’s decision, even when the voter does not really want to say who they voted for. In this election, that has surely become much harder.
The yard signs are few and far between. A lot of voters are avoiding the acrimony of the campaign by remaining silent, and that can mean anything for the outcome of this election.