Recently, I read the book "How Trump Won" by Breitbart editor Joel Pollak & author/history professor Larry Schweikart about the 2016 Presidential election. While it did confirm a few things I pointed out in my LiveJournal blogs(how Donald Trump won the election), there were other things I was surprised by.
For example, the Access Hollywood "Grab them by the pussy" tape. While I was correct in assuming that NBC was saving the tape for the weekend before the election(as TMZ reported that NBC held the tape for "maximum impact"), I've always thought that NBC leaked it in a panic to 1)counter Wikileaks' release of the Podesta DNC e-mails and 2)because Tim Kaine losing the Vice Presidential debate to Mike Pence. Larry Schweikart points out in the book that he felt the tape("Sex Bomb #2") was released early because polling data he was getting from PeoplesPunditDaily pollster Richard Baris & several Trump supporters showed that Trump was actually on his way to a much bigger win in the Electoral College(as high as 360 electoral votes) & a possible victory in the popular vote.
Schweikart noted that before the Access Hollywood tape dropped, Trump had Ohio, North Carolina, Florida, & Iowa on lock and was poised to win Michigan & Pennsylvania, while they still didn't seriously think Wisconsin would go to Trump despite having a few indictators. They even got an internal polling memo that showed Trump was within striking distance in Oregon(3 points down), Minnesota(1 down), Connecticut(2 down), & Rhode Island(2 down) & leading in Virginia & New Hampshire.
After the tape dropped, there was a pronounced effect despite Trump countering at the 2nd Presidential debate by inviting all the women that accused Bill Clinton of sexual misconduct. The tape ultimately cost Trump New Hampshire, Minnesota, & Virginia as well as the popular vote(Richard Baris' data had Trump potentially getting between 64 to 68 million votes before the Access Hollywood tape, but voters Baris called "wannabe elites" dropped plans to vote for Trump).
The book also showed how far off the polls were for the election especially in the states. RealClearPolitics had Hillary Clinton winning Florida by 3.2%, Pennsylvania by 1.9%, Michigan by 3.4%(Trump won by .3%), & Wisconsin by 6.5% as well as Trump winning Ohio by 2.3%(Trump won Ohio by 8.6%). Schweikart showed how one polling group that was considered an outlier got the election closer than the other polls. The Trafalgar group asked people participating in their polls, "How do you think your neighbor will vote in the election?"
Another interesting point Schweikart & Pollak makes in the epilogue chapter is that Bernie Sanders would not have beaten Trump if he were the Democratic nominee, pointing out that Sanders' radical far left views would have cost him Nevada, New Hampshire, & Colorado among other states(Schweikart points out that Trump could have won Nevada, New Mexico, & New Hampshire if Gary Johnson wasn't the Libertarian Party's candidate).
There was also some funny mentions of Election Night stories on Twitter of CNN banning all "Hillary in the bunker" stories as the election results were coming in and increasingly in favor of Trump, including a mention of her blaming then-FBI director James Comey and even President Obama for her losing the election, a story of Hillary having to be physically restrained from violently attacking her campaign managers John Podesta & Robby Mook(whose friend built a computer program that simulated the election based on data inputs the Clinton campaign relied heavily on), and even Hillary in a drunken rage screaming psychotically about the Russians.
All in all, a good read. Highly recommended if you want to understand how the 2016 presidential election played out.