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A recession would make it harder for Trump to be re-elected



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The presidential election is more than a year away, but one of the top threads in the discussion is the Economy. How will our economic health affect the elections given the signs of a downturn?

President Trump does not seem concerned at this point. "The economy is phenomenal right now," he told a New Hampshire radio station, according to a Wall Street Journal report. "With a normalized interest rate, we're phenomenal, we've had some bad days, but we'll have some very good days."

His opponents across the Ganges are not likely to be so optimistic about the economy. Elizabeth Warren wrote a blog post last month about the "impending economic crash," and many of the Democratic candidates have devoted entire sections of their policies to strengthening the economy, raising wages, and supporting the shrinking middle class. As trade negotiations progress, candidates will discuss the impact of new tariffs on consumer spending and business expansion.

Aside from debates and political views, Trump's reelection chances will also go against the history books: Republicans are usually elected when the economy is booming and Democrats are elected when the economy is in a weak phase.

The Washington Post has some historical data worth considering (or at least to stash in your memory bank for your next quiz night outing):

  • Since the Civil War, only one president has re-election with a recession won in the US The last two calendar years of his first term in office: William McKinley in 1900.
  • Since then, all four Presidents who stood for reelection and suffered such a recession have lost: William Taft, Herbert Hoover, Jimmy Carter and George HW Bush.
  • During the same period, all 10 who sought re-election without such a recession won: Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt (3x), Dwight D. Eisenhower, Richard M. Nixon, Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama.

Historical trends do not guarantee that Trump will fight to be re-elected. However, they indicate that an economic downturn will further fuel campaign discussions. With the development of economic prospects, every party could also have the chance to win the White House.


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