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Legitimacy and the lockdown

Why Trump lost: analysing the ‘firecracker election’

Simon Lemieux surveys the 2020 US presidential election and comes to a slightly unexpected conclusion

Joe Biden celebrating his win on 7 November, 4 days after the election

After four tumultuous and controversial years in the White House, in November 2020 Donald Trump was voted out. Along with Jimmy Carter and George H. W. Bush, he became one of the small cohort of recent US presidents not to be re-elected for a second term.

The 2020 presidential election was never going to be straightforward, swift or conducted in a civil way. Full of the usual political fireworks, and with plenty of noise and drama, it turned out to be like the firecracker firework: unpredictable, unnerving and spreading out in all directions (Box 1).

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Legitimacy and the lockdown

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