Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, and a Disrupted Electoral College: High Unfavorable Ratings, Multi-Candidate General Election Ballots, and Pursuing the ‘Art of the Deal’ with Free-Agent Electors in December 2016

Victor Williams, The Catholic University of America, Columbus School of Law


Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump could not be more different. Clinton worked hard to become the nation’s quintessential political insider.Hillary Clinton’s latest labors include: U.S. Secretary of State, U.S. Senator, accomplished attorney, and a policy-engaged First Lady of both America and Arkansas. In proposing economic and social reforms, Clinton pragmatically promises “a fair shot” for all Americans. Life experiences have taught the Yale Law graduate to judiciously weigh each public comment and every private action. Even her strongest supporters worry that Hillary Rodham Clinton often appears scripted and too cautious.

In stark contrast, Donald John Trump is the anti-politician, bombastic billionaire who boasts of unspecified plans to “Make America Great Again.” Large crowds cheer Trump’s conflicting retro-Reagan optimism and exceptionally harsh invective. Trump is increasingly more George Wallace than Ronald Reagan; his outbursts against establishment politics and undocumented immigrants have few limits. Trump’s raw message particularly resonates with those Americans who have stomached a decade of economic loss and social displacement. It is an American paradox that billionaire Trump so effectively channels George Wallace’s blue-collar, everyman appeal and message.