Red Nation, Blue Nation: Predictions for the Trump Years and Beyond

  1. redblue3

    Cross party voting in Congress, 1949-2011

    The cultural divide between Red and Blue will grow stronger and more distinct. Gerrymandering has  already polarized the political arena over the past twenty years. This has framed the public debate into two choices:  left and right. With social media, each side increasingly lives in self-defined echo chambers, with separate circles of friends, memes, videos, hashtags, and news. Even television shows cater to two different populations.  Dialogue and political compromise will decrease.  Trump, with his bombastic language and demonization of various people groups, will only exacerbate this.

  2. Likewise, racial divides will grow stronger and more distinct. This will lead to division within the Blue camp, with African Americans, Latinos, Muslim Americans, Native Americans, and other groups reacting to Trump in different ways and fighting different battles than White Liberals.  The Red camp will be remarkably more and more white.
  3. Trump will not change and become more moderate or “presidential”. If anything, he will become worse with access to power and perceived immunity. His reactions are more psychological than strategic. Expect turmoil within his cabinet. His own party may eventually turn on him, preferring a President Pence.
  4. When it comes to situations where the behavior of the president has been constrained by tradition rather than laws, Trump will ignore traditional restraint. This is most likely to be the case when it comes to financial conflicts of interest, which Trump will brazenly violate, legally.
  5. Future elections will be as bizarre as the last, with each candidate appealing only to their base, to the Red and Blue extremes. Emotion and imagery will supersede facts and discussion. Debates and fact-checking will be pointless. Celebrities will be among the most viable candidates.
  6. In 2020, about 62 million people will vote for Trump, or any other GOP nominee. This is always the case.  In the past several elections, the GOP faithful have turned out to vote for their candidate, even if he is a racist, narcissistic, sexist, draft-dodging, tax-evading, twice-divorced billionaire from New York City. redblue1
  7. redblue2Demographic shifts will increasingly turn the popular vote Blue, but this will be primarily in already-Blue states. The Democrats will get about 65 million votes, but the GOP will again benefit from the Electoral Vote system.  The primary election battleground will be in the Midwest, and it will be remarkably along racial lines.
  8. As usual, about 90 million eligible voters will not vote.  They represent a silent middle ground in the Red/Blue divide.
  9. In coming conflicts, Red supporters will be more comfortable with using violence than Blue supporters. Red supporters are already more comfortable with weapons, as they disproportionately own guns and are members of the military and law enforcement.
  10. war-zone-22

    Missile launcher and machine gun unit at Standing Rock, aimed at the Sioux reservation.  North Dakota is about to pass a law allowing drivers to run over,without liability, protesters blocking roads or highways.

    When violence is used by the Red camp, most often it will be by increasingly-militarized law enforcement (possibly including the US military). It will be primarily directed against marginalized Blue supporters (e.g. People of Color, not White Liberals).  The legal system will be one of their weapons, enabling them to act with impunity.  These will essentially be proxy wars, similar to Ferguson, Baltimore, and Standing Rock.

  11. The Blue camp will be more subject to internal strife regarding how to respond. They will be divided over the use of violence, the tone of their speech (combative vs reconciling), and political and legal strategies for defending their causes.  These internal divisions will seriously inhibit their ability to respond.
  12. Stronger and more combative responses by the Blue camp will be more successful than attempts at reconciliation. Rights will need to be asserted and seized, not passively received. The Blue Camp will be most successful in legal settings where White Liberals are willing and able to fight the battle.  Without legal support from White Liberals, People of Color will be the most vulnerable.
  13. Non-violent actions by the Blue camp will have limited success, gaining mostly negative news coverage primarily when there are violent aberrations. Non-violent actions will only be successful if they are: 1) very large, spanning multiple voter blocs or demographic groups, and 2) have economic consequences for the Red camp (e.g. a boycott of a specific business or industry).  Violent actions by Blue protesters will be easily defeated and have no success, other than to draw attention to an issue.
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3 Responses to Red Nation, Blue Nation: Predictions for the Trump Years and Beyond

  1. Saatyaki says:

    I hope that Blues reconcile major differences in order to match Reds!

  2. Don’t you think proxy war is a bit too extreme?

    • The “proxy” part might be extreme, as if the battles of people of color (POCs) are somehow integrally linked to those of white liberals (WLs). There are some major differences between their struggles. But the “war” part is not really extreme. The US establishment (military and other authorities) have arguably been waging a war (sometimes hotter, sometimes simmering out of view of WLs) against POCs since before Day 1 over 200 years ago. Historically, most Native tribes navigated a political existence with European settlers for hundreds of years. Things got bad for Natives when the French lost in 1763; and things got really bad after US independence.

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