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Sunday, July 31, 2022

Expert Endorsements


We can do more for ourselves than we think

In the 1970s, Trident Gum came up with this slogan, “Four out of five dentists surveyed recommend sugarless gum for their patients who chew gum.”

Of course, that’s 80 percent of dentists.

And 80 percent is compelling, indeed. The statistic is effective because relying on an expert’s credibility, such as a doctor, can have massive sway over our opinion on a matter.

Nielsen research shows that 85% of consumers seek a trusted expert when considering a purchase and that 67 percent of consumers agree that an endorsement from an expert makes them more likely to purchase.

Many say this helps explain why President Trump’s endorsement record of candidates is stronger than any other political figure in America today. Some would argue that voters view Trump as an “expert,” and his endorsement of any candidate makes them more likely to vote for that candidate.

And so far, the numbers bear that out. Eighty percent of candidates endorsed by Trump won their election last year. In primary elections, the win rate among his endorsements is even higher – 94% of Trump-endorsed candidates won (140 wins this year alone).

Of course, before we get too far ahead of ourselves, we must remember that correlation does not equal causation. You see, our brains tend to simplify information so we can make sense of it all, and in rushing to do so, we often make assumptions based on the slightest of relationships or biases. For example, during the summer, both ice cream consumption and sunburns increase (which are correlated), but one does not cause the other.

So, while we know Trump-endorsed candidates are winning elections, the question is this: Is there a causal relationship between Trump’s endorsement of a candidate and that candidate’s victory?

I say “no.” At least, not in the uncontested races – 47 of Trump’s endorsed primary candidates were uncontested.

But setting that point aside, to say that Trump’s endorsement correlates to an election victory misses the point or the larger picture and implies that Trump supporters have sheep-like loyalty for him and will blindly follow him. We’re not talking about Jim Jones, David Koresh or some other cult leader.

The popularity of Trump’s message is not primarily because of Trump. It has never been, and it never will be. His message resonates with millions of Americans. Not because of his showmanship or his knowing the art of the deal, but because it’s a message that we already know to be true: We can do more for ourselves than we think is possible, and there is greatness within all of us.

It’s a message larger than any fame or fortune he may have because, at the end of the day, it’s about we, the people, and realizing our greatest and best potential comes from within us, granted by God – not from what some government bureaucrat decides is best for us.

So, I would argue that Trump is simply endorsing candidates whose campaigns profess those same beliefs, and those candidates (not surprisingly) are winning their races because most voters (unlike most Democrats) understand that liberalism fails every time. You need only to look at most of the major U.S. cities corruption (especially when you compare them to Republican-led communities), according to statistics from the FBI and the U.S. Census Bureau.

In the book, “Why Liberalism Failed,” Patrick J. Deneen writes, “Liberalism has failed — not because it fell short but because it was true to itself.” In other words, there is no “fix” to liberalism, and the majority of the American people know it and, given the opportunity, won’t vote for it – perhaps ever again.

And they don’t need a “Donald Trump,” or anyone else for that matter, to tell them who to vote for.

Louis R. Avallone is a Shreveport businessman, attorney and author of “Bright Spots, Big Country, What Makes America Great.” He is also a former aide to U.S. Representative Jim McCrery and editor of The Caddo Republican. His columns have appeared regularly in 318 Forum since 2007. Follow him on Facebook, on Twitter  @louisravallone or by e-mail at louisavallone@mac.com, and on American Ground Radio at 101.7FM and Canada 710 AM, weeknights from 6 - 7 p.m., and streaming live on keelnews.com.


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