By Pat Kessler


MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — President Donald Trump launched his 2020 re-election campaign Tuesday at a raucous rally in Orlando. But the road to the White House goes through the Midwest, where he unexpectedly won traditionally blue states in 2016. And nearly three years later, it’s a lot more bumpy.

In 2016, President Trump took the Midwest by storm, winning reliably Democratic Wisconsin and Michigan. Trump nearly pulled off the biggest Minnesota upset in more than 40 years, losing the state to Hillary Clinton by just 1.5%.

“We came this close!” the President exclaimed at a rally in Duluth last year, holding two fingers close together.

In fact, the President steamrolled through the Upper Midwest, winning North and South Dakota, Iowa, Wisconsin and Michigan. It was a brilliantly executed political strategy. But now, the President is underwater– or barely afloat– in every Midwestern state.

Where the President won a Midwestern state by double digits, his approval rating is now down double digits. And where he lost– in places like Minnesota — the numbers are even worse. The website Morning Consult is tracking the President’s approval ratings from the day he took office.

Here is a look at seven Midwestern states when he took office in January 2017– when he was extremely popular with double digit approval ratings. Even in blue state Minnesota, more people approved than disapproved:

More than two years later, in May 2019, the President’s approval ratings have plummeted. This includes toss-up states he won, like Iowa, Wisconsin and Michigan.

If the President is an underdog in 2020, it doesn’t show. Despite the upside-down state numbers, most Americans in a CNN Poll (54%) think the President will win re-election.

The one place where the President’s support remains strong is with Republicans. A recent Gallup poll found 90% of Republicans say they approve of the job President Trump is doing.

That’s your Reality Check.

Pat Kessler

Comments (5)
  1. Chris Bleckinger says:

    Right, polls! Trump couldn’t hold all the supporters in a 25,000 seat venue at the start of his re-election campaign. (a couple of days ago)
    At Obama’s second term they were closing off half of the auditoriums so his lack of supporters wasn’t so obvious. He only had 400 people at one of his ‘events’.

  2. Milan Veselinovich Alexander says:

    Reality check is not full of reality. Trump 2020!

  3. Frank Lobe says:

    This coming from a communist leaning part of the fake news media. Clinton by a landslide.

  4. Elle Paris says:

    He is doing a phenomenal job despite the witchhunts. Here’s a question…what have the Democrats done? They can’t bear for him to get a ‘victory’ so they have done nothing on Infrastructure, or immigration. Who would vote for these clowns?

    Also, Thanks to Trump we have more money and care for our vets, we have “right to try”, we have prison reform. This is a positive for everyday Americans! #MAGA