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Francis Wilkinson

Trump Confronts a Blue Wall of Governors

In Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania, the president is less popular than the Democratic governor.

What happens in Nevada may stay in Nevada.

What happens in Nevada may stay in Nevada.

Photographer: Roger Kisby/Bloomberg

Three crucial states that swung the 2016 election to Donald Trump could also be the hinge that dislodges him in 2020. Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin share many characteristics, from Big Ten football programs to post-industrial small-town desolation. But in this year’s election they share another attribute: Democratic governors who have worked to mitigate the coronavirus contagion in the face of opposition from Trump and sometimes hysterical attacks from Republican state legislators.

It seems significant, then, that in this era of extreme polarization, each of those governors remains consistently more popular in their respective states than the president.