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COVID-19 and the 2020 US Presidential Election: Did the Pandemic Cost Donald Trump Reelection?

Marcus Noland () and Yiwen Zhang

No WP21-3, Working Paper Series from Peterson Institute for International Economics

Abstract: By Election Day 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic had killed 234,244 Americans and caused the sharpest macroeconomic downturn in US history. Regression analysis shows that in a “no pandemic†counterfactual or a counterfactual in which the severity of the pandemic was mitigated by 30 percent, Donald Trump would have lost the popular vote but won the electoral vote. In the 20 percent mitigation scenario, the electoral vote would have been tied, giving Trump a presumptive victory in the House of Representatives. For the second time in a row (and the third time since 2000), the candidate who lost the popular vote would have been elected president of the United States.

Keywords: COVID-19; coronavirus; pandemic; Donald Trump; sociotropic voting; electoral college (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D72 F68 H1 I18 Z13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021-03
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-pol
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