Donald Trump really could be the end of the Republican Party if he becomes the nominee.
Utah is as red a state as Republicans could ever hope for. Over the last fifty years, the state has faithfully remained loyal to Republicans no matter who the party nominates for president.
But this year could be significantly different.
According to a poll conducted for the Deseret News, most Utah voters will vote for Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders should Trump be the Republican on the ticket in November.
The poll asked voters who they would vote for if the election were held today assuming Trump is the nominee. As it turns out, Clinton would squeak by Trump 38%-36%, and Bernie Sanders would win by a landslide 48%-37%, suggesting that Democrats really should take another look a Sanders and ask themselves if they want to win big or chance a close election that could result in a Republican winning.
Deseret News reports that the “Democratic candidates fare even better against Trump among Utah’s many unaffiliated voters. Clinton would win Utah by 17 points, the poll found, while Sanders would see a 36-point victory if the election were held today. The margin of error for unaffiliated voters is nearly 7 percent.”
Here’s an image of the poll via the Deseret News.
This spells big trouble for Republicans, who are desperate to win back the White House from Democrats.
The poll was shocking to former Utah Governor Mike Leavitt, who remarked that “if you lose Utah as a Republican, there is no hope.”
It even surprised Brigham Young University’s Center for the Study of Elections and Democracy co-director Chris Karpowitz. “Wow. Wow. That’s surprising,” he declared. “Any matchup in which Democrats are competitive in the state of Utah is shocking.”
Again, Utah has not voted Democrat in fifty years. And that makes the state’s six electoral votes even more important since it could force Republicans to pour money into the state just to hold onto it. And if the election is close, six electoral votes could make a difference.
It could also signal a domino-effect. If Trump is the nominee, chances are Utah isn’t the only red state prepared to close their eyes and vote for the Democrat. We could end up seeing red states that haven’t voted Democrat in generations break the streak rather than see Donald Trump become president.
And if the race isn’t that close, it could mean a presidential mandate for Democrats to institute the policies they have campaigned for, which is a strong rebuke of Republicans and the failed conservative policies they have pushed for years. And such a landslide could trickle down to House and Senate races as well as state legislative and governor’s races.
You can say that “it’s only Utah,” but it’s worth repeating that if a longtime deep red state like Utah can turn blue, so can other red states. And that should scare the hell out of a Republican Party that wants desperately to remain a viable legitimate political party in the United States.
Featured image via Wikipedia