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The Lichtman Keys - Printable Version

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The Lichtman Keys - Eric the Green - 06-19-2020

Key

1
Party Mandate
After the midterm elections, the incumbent party holds more seats inthe U.S. House of Representatives than it did after the previousmidterm elections.

2
Contest
There is no serious contest for the incumbent-party nomination.

3
Incumbency
The incumbent-party candidate is the sitting president.

4
Third party
There is no significant third party or independent campaign.

5
Short-term economy
The economy is not in recession during the election campaign.

6
Long-term economy
Real per-capita economic growth during the term equals or exceeds mean growth during the previous two terms.

7
Policy change
The incumbent administration effects major changes in national policy.

8
Social unrest
There is no sustained social unrest during the term.

9
Scandal
The incumbent administration is untainted by major scandal.

10
Foreign/military failure
The incumbent administration suffers no major failure in foreign or military affairs.

11
Foreign/military success
The incumbent administration achieves a major success in foreign or military affairs.

12
Incumbent charisma
The incumbent-party candidate is charismatic or a national hero.

13
Challenger charisma
The challenging-party candidate is not charismatic or a national hero.



RE: The Lichtman Keys - Eric the Green - 06-19-2020

The Keys were published in 1984. He applied them retroactively before that. Let's see how he would have scored 1968.

True means the incumbent party is favored, false the challenging party. 6 false keys and the incumbent party loses.

Key

1 Party Mandate After the midterm elections, the incumbent party holds more seats in the U.S. House of Representatives than it did after the previous midterm elections. FALSE. Republicans gained seats in 1966.

2 Contest There is no serious contest for the incumbent-party nomination. FALSE. RFK, McCarthy and McGovern challenged the eventual nominee Humphrey, and won most of the primary election contests.

3 Incumbency The incumbent-party candidate is the sitting president. FALSE, LBJ bowed out.

4 Third party There is no significant third party or independent campaign. FALSE, Wallace won 5 states.

5 Short-term economy The economy is not in recession during the election campaign. TRUE

6 Long-term economy Real per-capita economic growth during the term equals or exceeds mean growth during the previous two terms. TRUE, the economy was booming under LBJ.

7 Policy change The incumbent administration effects major changes in national policy. TRUE: Medicare, Voting Rights Act and other Great Society programs passed.

8 Social unrest There is no sustained social unrest during the term. FALSE

9 Scandal The incumbent administration is untainted by major scandal. TRUE

10 Foreign/military failure The incumbent administration suffers no major failure in foreign or military affairs. FALSE, the Vietnam debacle was the archetypal quagmire for all time.

11 Foreign/military success The incumbent administration achieves a major success in foreign or military affairs. FALSE, LBJ lost on both counts on foreign policy. His conference with Kosygin was not a major success I don't think.

12 Incumbent charisma The incumbent-party candidate is charismatic or a national hero. FALSE

13 Challenger charisma The challenging-party candidate is not charismatic or a national hero. TRUE

8 false keys; correct. The Democrats lost in spite of a booming economy and major accomplishments in domestic policy.


RE: The Lichtman Keys - Eric the Green - 06-19-2020

A more difficult election to score might be 1976.

Key

1
Party Mandate
After the midterm elections, the incumbent party holds more seats in the U.S. House of Representatives than it did after the previous midterm elections. FALSE. 1974 was a big year for Democrats in the midterms.

2
Contest
There is no serious contest for the incumbent-party nomination. FALSE. Reagan challenged Ford and almost won.

3
Incumbency
The incumbent-party candidate is the sitting president. TRUE

4
Third party
There is no significant third party or independent campaign. Eugene McCarthy ran, but did not do well enough. TRUE

5
Short-term economy
The economy is not in recession during the election campaign. TRUE. The economy was recovering from the 1973-75 recession

6
Long-term economy
Real per-capita economic growth during the term equals or exceeds mean growth during the previous two terms. FALSE. The economy was in recession during most of the incumbent's term.

7
Policy change
The incumbent administration effects major changes in national policy. FALSE. President Ford only accomplished vetoes.

8
Social unrest
There is no sustained social unrest during the term. TRUE

9
Scandal
The incumbent administration is untainted by major scandal. FALSE. Watergate forced out the president during the term, which was a taint on the incumbent administration, and his appointed successor pardoned him, an unpopular move.

10
Foreign/military failure
The incumbent administration suffers no major failure in foreign or military affairs. FALSE. Vietnam defeated the USA and its client in 1975.

11
Foreign/military success
The incumbent administration achieves a major success in foreign or military affairs. TRUE. Middle East agreements.

12
Incumbent charisma
The incumbent-party candidate is charismatic or a national hero. FALSE

13
Challenger charisma
The challenging-party candidate is not charismatic or a national hero. This is tough. Carter was considered charismatic before he took office. I would give it a mild TRUE.

I COUNT 7 FALSE KEYS, which is correct; the incumbent Republican Party lost.


RE: The Lichtman Keys - Eric the Green - 06-19-2020

Let's try another tough one, 1988. Incumbent nominee Bush defeated Dukakis.

Key

1
Party Mandate
After the midterm elections, the incumbent party holds more seats in the U.S. House of Representatives than it did after the previous midterm elections. FALSE. The Democrats gained seats in 1986.

2
Contest
There is no serious contest for the incumbent-party nomination. FALSE, Senator Dole challenged Vice President Bush

3
Incumbency
The incumbent-party candidate is the sitting president. FALSE

4
Third party
There is no significant third party or independent campaign. TRUE

5
Short-term economy
The economy is not in recession during the election campaign. TRUE

6
Long-term economy
Real per-capita economic growth during the term equals or exceeds mean growth during the previous two terms. TRUE

7
Policy change
The incumbent administration effects major changes in national policy. There was tax reform, but I don't know if that was major enough. But if you count Reagan's first term, then it gets a TRUE. Reaganomics was established for 40 years (and counting).

8
Social unrest
There is no sustained social unrest during the term. TRUE

9
Scandal
The incumbent administration is untainted by major scandal. FALSE. Iran-Contra. Many cabinet resignations and many indictments and convictions.

10
Foreign/military failure
The incumbent administration suffers no major failure in foreign or military affairs. TRUE

11
Foreign/military success
The incumbent administration achieves a major success in foreign or military affairs. TRUE. Agreements with the Soviet Union

12
Incumbent charisma
The incumbent-party candidate is charismatic or a national hero. FALSE

13
Challenger charisma
The challenging-party candidate is not charismatic or a national hero. TRUE

If I give the incumbent party Key 7, then that's only 5 False Keys, favoring the incumbent. That's a close call, but correct. Incumbent nominee Bush won.


RE: The Lichtman Keys - Eric the Green - 06-19-2020

How about 1980. President Carter vs. Ronald Reagan

Key

1
Party Mandate
After the midterm elections, the incumbent party holds more seats in the U.S. House of Representatives than it did after the previous midterm elections. FALSE

2
Contest
There is no serious contest for the incumbent-party nomination. FALSE. Ted Kennedy

3
Incumbency
The incumbent-party candidate is the sitting president. TRUE

4
Third party
There is no significant third party or independent campaign. FALSE John Anderson

5
Short-term economy
The economy is not in recession during the election campaign. FALSE "Are you better off than you were 4 years ago?" Reagan asked. The people answered no.

6
Long-term economy
Real per-capita economic growth during the term equals or exceeds mean growth during the previous two terms. Close, but TRUE I believe.

7
Policy change
The incumbent administration effects major changes in national policy. FALSE His energy policy was important, but not popular, and it did not shift our energy usage enough, and congress did not act on it sufficiently)

8
Social unrest
There is no sustained social unrest during the term. TRUE

9
Scandal
The incumbent administration is untainted by major scandal. TRUE

10
Foreign/military failure
The incumbent administration suffers no major failure in foreign or military affairs. FALSE Iran crisis

11
Foreign/military success
The incumbent administration achieves a major success in foreign or military affairs. TRUE Camp David Accords

12
Incumbent charisma
The incumbent-party candidate is charismatic or a national hero. FALSE Malaise was not appealing

13
Challenger charisma
The challenging-party candidate is not charismatic or a national hero. FALSE Ronald Reagan was a great communicator

8 False Keys. Carter lost.


RE: The Lichtman Keys - Eric the Green - 06-20-2020

2016 is a tough one. Lichtman technically got this one wrong, because historically the Keys are correct for the popular vote. But he got credit because he predicted Trump would win, and he did through the Electoral College. Let's see if I agree with him that the incumbent Democrats were going to lose.

Key

1
Party Mandate
After the midterm elections, the incumbent party holds more seats in the U.S. House of Representatives than it did after the previous midterm elections. FALSE. Republicans gained seats and won the senate in 2014.

2
Contest
There is no serious contest for the incumbent-party nomination. FALSE Bernie Sanders

3
Incumbency
The incumbent-party candidate is the sitting president. FALSE

4
Third party
There is no significant third party or independent campaign. Lichtman considered that Gary Johnson was a significant challenger, because at one point he had over 5% in the polls, plus there was Jill Stein. FALSE

5
Short-term economy
The economy is not in recession during the election campaign. TRUE

6
Long-term economy
Real per-capita economic growth during the term equals or exceeds mean growth during the previous two terms. TRUE

7
Policy change
The incumbent administration effects major changes in national policy. TRUE, Obamacare, but only early in the administration's first term.

8
Social unrest
There is no sustained social unrest during the term. TRUE

9
Scandal
The incumbent administration is untainted by major scandal. TRUE

10
Foreign/military failure
The incumbent administration suffers no major failure in foreign or military affairs. TRUE, although there were the mistakes in Syria and Benghazi.

11
Foreign/military success
The incumbent administration achieves a major success in foreign or military affairs. FALSE Although the Paris Agreement was important, it did not concern the security or standing of the United States directly.

12
Incumbent charisma
The incumbent-party candidate is charismatic or a national hero. FALSE

13
Challenger charisma
The challenging-party candidate is not charismatic or a national hero. TRUE, although he was certainly a skilled entertainer and had a loyal base. The fact remains that Hillary actually had a higher approval rating throughout the campaign.

That's a close call, but the incumbent party got 6 false keys, and 3 of the trues were shaky, and so Lichtman predicted that Hillary would lose and Trump would win.