Trump's wins in Wisconsin and Michigan were great surprises.
Clinton campaign appeared to take Wisconsin for
Charlie Cook writes that, "The Clinton team was so
confident in its
analytical models that it opted not to
conduct tracking polls in
a number of states during the last month of the
argues that such tracking polls would have highlighted the campaign's
perilous position in states such as Wsiconsin and Michigan.
Meanwhile, the Trump campaign saw the opportunity. They had not
been ignoring the state, making occasional visits, and weighed in with
a late push. In a post-election interview with "60 Minutes,"
Trump digital director Brand Parscale stated that in the closing week,
"I took every nickel and dime I could out of anywhere
else. And I moved it to Michigan and Wisconsin. And I started buying
advertising, digital, TV."
Post-election analyses also pointed to effects of the voter ID law
in tipping the balance
to Trump. For example, one study
looked at Dane and Milwaukee counties and found that, "If they voted at
rates, voter ID lowered turnout by 0.9 to 1.8 percentage points."
The study further notes, "The burdens of voter ID fell
disproportionately on low-income and minority populations." An
earlier anaylsis by the Democrat-aligned Priorities USA, points to a
3.3% decline in turnout and claims that, "If turnout had instead
increased by the national- no-change average, we estimate that over
200,000 more voters would have voted in Wisconsin in 2016." The
key words are "if turnout had instead increased..." Looking at
the neighboring states of Minnesota and Iowa, one sees the turnout also
dropped there, although not by as much; the 200,000 number thus appears
of 2012 and 2016 Turnout in Wisconsin and Neighboring States
Figures are Total Votes for
President and Voting Eligible Popultion Highest Office Turnout
Although Trump ultimately prevailed by a thin 22,748-vote margin (0.74
percentage points), he did turn broad swaths of the state red, carrying
60 counties to just 12 for Clinton. By comparison, in 2012 Obama
carried 35 counties and in 2008 he carried 59 counties.
The post-election period was interesting as
well. On Nov. 25, the Stein campaign requested a recount
. The Wisconsin
Elections Commission approved the recount,
for which the Stein campaign was to pay an estimated cost of just under
$3.5 million. Legal maneuvering included an unsuccessful effort
Stein campaign to have the recount done by hand in all 72 counties, an
FEC complaint by the Wisconsin Republican Party, and
an unsuccessful lawsuit by two pro-Trump PACs to terminate the recount.
Tom Kertscher. "Were 300,000 Wisconsin voters turned away from
the polls in the 2016 presidential election?" PolitiFact,
Dec. 7, 2016.
Cook. "How Analytical Models Failed Clinton." National
Journal, Dec. 26, 2016.
Ari Berman. "Wisconsin’s Voter-ID Law Suppressed 200,000 Votes in
2016 (Trump Won by 22,748)." The Nation, May 9, 2017.
(60 Minutes Overtime) "Parscale: TV News Thought I Was a Joke." CBS,
News, Oct. 8, 2017.