I begin with this headline in the New York Times on July 5: "Donald Trump Finds Himself Playing Catch-Up in All-Important Ohio."
That story said:
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Since the Republican Party’s 19th-century founding, not one of its nominees has won the White House without carrying Ohio, a most diverse and perennially hard-fought state.
But as Republicans head to Cleveland to nominate Donald J. Trump in two weeks, a convention city chosen with Battleground Ohio much in mind, a vortex of headwinds are rising against Mr. Trump in the state.
The barely concealed disdain of Gov. John R. Kasich, a former rival who has not endorsed the presumptive nominee, echoes through the state’s Republican leadership, whose full engagement in the fall campaign will be needed to turn out voters.
Images of disunity in Cleveland, where delegates are gathering July 18-21 in the shadow of local polls showing a majority of Republicans prefer a different nominee, could make it harder for the party to attract grass-roots activists for the fall campaign.
Mr. Trump ignored Ohio for six weeks after clinching the nomination, until a visit last week to coal country, where he spoke to an audience of largely white working-class voters, including some Democrats. It was the group he has performed best with in primaries and polls.
But in describing a trade deal during the same visit as a “rape of our country,” his oratory and protectionist policies are turning off other Republican-leaning voters, including suburban women and business interests, in a state whose economy depends on global exports.That was then. This is now:
Ohio, Long a Bellwether, Is Fading on the Electoral MapWhat changed?
Trump. He weathered that rising "vortex of headwinds" "in the shadow of local polls" and now is turning on "Republican-leaning voters, including suburban women and business interests, in a state whose economy depends on global exports."
So screw Ohio, right?
From today's story:
After decades as one of America’s most reliable political bellwethers, an inevitable presidential battleground that closely mirrored the mood and makeup of the country, Ohio is suddenly fading in importance this year.
Hillary Clinton has not been to the state since Labor Day, and her aides said Thursday that she would not be back until next week, after a monthlong absence, effectively acknowledging how difficult they think it will be to defeat Donald J. Trump here. Ohio has failed to keep up with the demographic changes transforming the United States, growing older, whiter and less educated than the nation at large.
And the two parties have made strikingly different wagers about how to win the White House in this election: Mr. Trump, the Republican nominee, is relying on a demographic coalition that, while well tailored for Ohio even in the state’s Democratic strongholds, leaves him vulnerable in the more diverse parts of the country where Mrs. Clinton is spending most of her time.
It is a jarring change for political veterans here, who relish being at the center of the country’s presidential races: Because of newer battleground states, Mrs. Clinton can amass the 270 electoral votes required to win even if she loses Ohio.
You know what?
Ohio is still the bellwether.
And that bellwether follows Trump, not Hillary.
My new book, "Trump the Press," is a fun read that details how the experts missed the rise of Trump. Read the reviews in the right column.
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