The 2018 midterm elections gave Democrats everywhere hope as Democrats took back the House of Representatives with the most diverse body of representatives in the house's history.
While much of this has been credited to the increased turnout of a motivated Democratic base, a recent study from New Catalist indicates that Americans who voted for President Donald Trump in the 2016 election voted for Democrats in 2018.
The report states:
"When it comes to turnout, the composition of the electorate roughly 'broke even' with 2016, much different than the past two midterms. But 'breaking even' doesn’t explain the amount and geography of gains that Democrats saw. A large portion of gains came from people who voted in both elections, switching from supporting Trump in 2016 to supporting Democrats in 2018. We show some of the math behind this, including how that conclusion changes in different areas of the country."
The report surmises this from trends among white college voters who leaned Republican in 2016 before shifting to Democrat in the midterms two years later.
Yair Ghitza, the study's leader, elaborated on the findings on Twitter.
Here's 2016 to 2018. Three things happening: (1) 2018 turnout was really good (both the overall number and the comp… https://t.co/mRobHYSvX3— Yair Ghitza (@Yair Ghitza)1558444085.0
But that doesn't explain the change from 2016 to 2018, because reaching a Presidential-like electorate doesn't expl… https://t.co/2XFvSR4awW— Yair Ghitza (@Yair Ghitza)1558444106.0
So (2) we estimate the remaining difference comes from vote switchers, i.e., mostly people that voted for Trump in… https://t.co/KrfVnKOWZk— Yair Ghitza (@Yair Ghitza)1558444138.0
Also (3) Substantial geographic variation in these numbers, and different takeaways in different years, as shown in the post. 13/x— Yair Ghitza (@Yair Ghitza)1558444163.0
So in our view, both turnout changes and vote switching were critical in Democrats' success in 2018: turnout got De… https://t.co/Ds2sw4ZY4i— Yair Ghitza (@Yair Ghitza)1558444178.0
If this trend continues into 2020, Trump could be in trouble.