Here's How to Win the 2020 "Race War" ... Using the Electoral College

The Electoral College will still be here in 2020. And it's all about "white nationalists" vs. everyone else

Guest Composition

by Dr. G.S. Potter | #RealityCheck Contributor | @doc_strategy

The 2020 Presidential election is a battle between white nationalists and everyone else. And the only way to lose the election is to pretend that it isn’t.

If the Democrats continue to approach the 2020 Presidential Election as if it is a race-blind battle between “Blue States” and “Red States” they will lose.

But if they step out of the “Southern Strategy,” embrace diversity as a strength, and speak directly to the needs of Black, Brown and Indigenous communities , they will kick the GOP and their neo-Confederate, white nationalist asses back to the Antebellum. It’s really as simple as that.

In order to do that, though, we need to take the battle against white nationalists from the court of public opinion and take it, instead, to the Electoral College. Below is a description of what the 2020 election would look like if we stepped away from the race neutral divisions of red and blue and stepped into the election being honest about the fact that it is about white nationalists versus everyone else.

The 13 Confederate States

The first step is to identify lost territory. In no way should we abandon the people of color that live in these neo-Confederate states, but they will not be taken out of the hands of white nationalists in the 2020 election. They have overwhelmingly white populations that vote firmly for Trump’s brand of white nationalism. We cannot afford to try to tailor our messaging to appeal to white nationalists in these states. We need to let them go  …  for now.

There are the 13 Confederate states we’re talking about and their corresponding Electoral College or “EC” votes. Combined, they are worth 80 EC votes:

  • Tennessee (11)

  • Indiana (11)

  • Missouri (10)

  • Kentucky (8)

  • Oklahoma (7)

  • Arkansas (6)

  • Kansas (6)

  • Utah (6)

  • Nebraska (5)

  • West Virginia (5)

  • Idaho (4)

  • North Dakota (3)

  • Wyoming (3)

The Democratic (Nonwhite) Strongholds

The next step is to identify the states that solidly reject Trump’s brand of white nationalism.

They are “minority” heavy. They typically and predominantly vote against the white nationalist party. And if there was an agenda that presented leadership positions and legislative inclusion for Black, Latino, and Indigenous populations, minority non-voters would be encouraged to turn-out in a way that would outnumber white voters who would flee to the comforts of white nationalism.

There are 13 Democratic strongholds. Combined, they are worth 181 EC votes:

  • California (55)

  • New York (29)

  • Illinois (20)

  • New Jersey (14)

  • Virginia (13)

  • Washington (12)

  • Maryland (10)

  • Connecticut (7)

  • Nevada (6)

  • New Mexico (5)

  • Hawaii (4)

  • Washington, D.C. (3)

  • Delaware (3)

Democratic Ally States

Once we have identified the white nationalist and minority strongholds, we can move on to identifying white-dominant states that are typically aligned with the general interests of minorities in the Democratic Party.

These are states that have largely white populations that, on the whole, reject Trump’s brand of white nationalism. There are 4 ally states. Combined, they are worth 25 EC votes:

  • Massachusetts (11)

  • Oregon (7)

  • Rhode Island (4)

  • Vermont (3)


Now What’s the Score … So Far?

That brings our combined Electoral College score to:

  • “White nationalists” - 80 EC Votes from 13 states

  • Everybody else - 211 EC Votes from 17 states plus the District of Columbia

So far, so good.


Battleground States

Now let’s look at the 20 states we have to compete for.

They include the 10 closest races and overlap with the states that flipped from blue to red in 2016. This category also includes states held by white nationalists that have minority populations large enough to flip them out of white nationalist hands if the current race neutral/White-centric strategy of the Democratic party is abandoned.

These 20 Battleground states, combined, are worth 252 EC votes:

  • Texas (38)

  • Florida (29)

  • Pennsylvania (20)

  • Ohio (18)

  • Michigan (16)

  • Georgia (16)

  • North Carolina (15)

  • Arizona (11)

  • Minnesota (10),

  • Wisconsin (10)

  • South Carolina (9)

  • Colorado (9)

  • Alabama (9)

  • Louisiana (8)

  • Iowa (6)

  • Nevada (6)

  • New Hampshire (4)

  • Maine (4)

  • South Dakota (3)

  • Alaska (3)

  • Montana (3)

States in Need of Liberation

In an election between white nationalism and people of color, there is no state with minority populations larger than 30% that should hand its Electoral College votes to the Republican Party. The only ways this can happen is through voter suppression and neglect. Both issues can be confronted by 2020, and these states can be taken out of the hands of the white power party.

There are 8 states in need of liberation. Combined, they carry 126 EC votes:

  • Texas (38)

  • Florida (29)

  • Georgia (16)

  • Arizona (11)

  • Alabama (9)

  • South Carolina (9)

  • Louisiana (8)

  • Nevada (6)

States in Need of Mobilization

A number of states have populations where Whites are still the dominant majority, but contain counties and cities with “minority” populations large enough to flip them out of white nationalist hands  - if communities of color are mobilized to vote.

There are 6 states in need of mobilization. Combined, they hold a total of 60 EC votes:

  • Pennsylvania (20)

  • Michigan (16)

  • North Carolina (15)

  • South Dakota (3)

  • Alaska (3)

  • Montana (3)

These states have counties of color that are strong enough to push the Democrats over the edge to a victory.

States we Need to Stop Pandering To

The current strategy being deployed by the Democratic Party shows a willingness to exchange the 145 states and 186 Electoral College votes that can be won by centering Voters of Color in their platform for the handful of White dominant states below.

That is strategically, mathematically, and just logically, well, stupid. Incredibly stupid. We must be willing to let them go in order to allow the wave of Black, Brown, and Indigenous voters to advance to the front of the party and end the electoral ambitions of both the Trump Administration in 2020 and the GOP for the foreseeable future.

There are 6 states we need to stop pandering to. Combined, they offer only 61 EC votes:

  • Maine (4)

  • New Hampshire (4)

  • Iowa (6)

  • Colorado (9)

  • Wisconsin (10)

  • Minnesota (10)

  • Ohio (18)

The Final Score

If we 1) add the 186 EC votes from Liberated and Mobilized states to our 211 EC votes from Democratic Ally and Democratic Nonwhite Stronghold states, and then 2) allow the GOP to take the 13 Confederate states and the White states being pandered to we have a grand total of …

  • Democrats: 397 EC Votes

  • Trump Republicans: 141 EC Votes

There is little to no change white nationalists can recover or retake if we remember it is not diversity that is divisive -  it is white nationalism that is divisive. If we abandon the race-blind glasses and embrace the Communities of Color that make America great now ,  we won’t have to worry about the White people trying to “Make America Great Again.”

However, if we continue down the road carved out by the Southern Strategy and allow white nationalists to hide behind veils of red and blue ,  Trump’s Republicans will win the 2020 election.

The 2020 election will be a race war. The only way we as Democrats, people of color, and allies can win is if we recognize that and fight back accordingly.