As Frank Sinatra might croon, ''Start spreading the news ... They’re leaving today ...''
That’s the tune the GOP could hum about jaded New York City voters jumping ship in 2020 from their traditional Democrat choice and landing not in the Libertarian Party, not the Green Party, but in (gasp!) the Republican Party.
As we’re nearing the end of President Joe Biden’s first 100 days in office, no one in the national liberal media to this day has done a proper post-mortem about the shift among New York City voters toward the GOP and President Donald Trump. It is the sort of strange bedfellows story that any enterprising editor would usually assign.
So, why the silence?
They don’t want you to know it happened.
That’s right, the midtown Manhattan hosts at MSNBC would have you believe that Trump didn’t have the support of his former fellow New Yorkers; in fact, they’d like you to think that Trump was like Pepé Le Pew, the proverbial skunk, at an Upper East Side garden party.
However, the truth is that ''the Donald'' actually did quite well here in the Empire State.
In fact, Trump did better here in New York City than he did in 2016.
Election results show that President Trump actually gained 200,000 votes from New York City residents compared to 2016. Joe Biden, on the other hand, lost roughly 3 percent of the New York City vote over Hillary Clinton’s win here in 2016.
Those changes aren’t insignificant in a city that had previously been written off as un-winnable for the GOP.
How ya’ like them big apples?
The biggest shifts toward Trump actually occurred in Democrat strongholds such as Brooklyn, the Bronx, and even Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s district in Queens. These three areas in New York were the hardest hit demographically by COVID-19, are largely minority populations, and are working-class populations.
Bet you didn’t hear about this in the mainstream media.
Locals suggest the gains for the Republican candidate likely occurred due to Mayor Bill de Blasio’s bumbling of the pandemic including a year-long lockdown, devastating closures of small businesses, school closures and skyrocketing crime. WABC New York talk radio host Frank Morano suggests that local politics had more to do with New Yorkers’ decisions to mark the ballot for Trump.
''Voter attitudes aren't necessarily changing with respect to national politics,'' said Morano, host of ''The Other Side of Midnight with Frank Morano'' and ''77 WABC Early News'' with Juliet Huddy. ''You still have a city where 80 percent of New Yorkers wouldn't consider voting for Donald Trump. What may be changing is the willingness of New Yorkers to vote for local Republicans, now that the boogeyman of Donald Trump can no longer be used as an albatross around the neck of every Republican running for office.''
Yet national politics likely did play some role in the 200,000 increase in Trump votes — after all, they marked the ballot for Trump, when they could have left it blank. The national backdrop can’t be ignored as blue-state and blue-city leaders across the country such as Michigan’s Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and California Gov. Gavin Newsom served as textbook cases of what ''not'' to do during a pandemic.
It’s also important to point out that the shift toward the top Republican also occurred before the sexual harassment allegations peaked against Cuomo. The first allegation against Cuomo came in late December and the fervor reached its peak last month. If the elections were held today, the gains for Trump and the Republican Party would likely be higher in the wake of Cuomo’s scandals as more than one-third of New York voters believe he sexually harassed women on the job.
While it’s too soon to suggest that Trump’s surprising 2020 gains in New York City represent some sort of a long-term trend that has staying power — or whether the ultimate 2024 Republican presidential nominee could be the beneficiary of Trump’s gains — it could be the start of a swing of the pendulum. After all, New Yorkers who have sought refuge in Florida and swapped Fifth Avenue for Worth Ave. have grown fond of their new surrogate Gov. Ron DeSantis, who also happens to be a GOP front-runner for the next presidential contest.
One thing is certain: Democrats in New York have been flailing and nearly a quarter-million more New York City residents voted Republican. In a city that never sleeps, Democrats might want to sleep with one eye open ahead of 2024.
Jennifer Kerns is host of the new nationally-syndicated show, ''All-American Radio with Jennifer Kerns.'' Read Jennifer Kerns' Reports Here.
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