Two new California polls are showing what is becoming increasingly clear across the nation: there is a very good chance that Donald Trump will be the next president of the United States.  On Monday, Survey USA, which has a good track record in California, showed Hillary Clinton leading Donald Trump by 52 to 38 percent.  On Wednesday, polling by the Public Policy Institute of California showed the race at Clinton 49 percent, Trump 39 percent.

But this is deep blue California where President Obama beat Gov. Romney in 2012 by 60 to 37 percent, double the lead Clinton now enjoys in these polls.  California is generally thought to be about 10 percent more Democratic than the nation as a whole, so these California results suggest a near tie nationwide, as many polls are now showing.

To understand what is going on here it is useful to look at an election taking place across the Atlantic in Great Britain.  On June 23, British voters will decide whether to leave the European Union, the so-called “Brexit Vote.”  What could this have in common with America’s vote; well, it is the issues driving the Brexit debate.

Those who want out of the EU complain of a distant and elitist bureaucracy in Belgium that tells them everything from how many bananas can be in a bunch to how heavy a suitcase a bell boy in a hotel can carry – a great sense that the nation is losing its ability to rule itself because of uncaring faraway elites.

The second issue is immigration, Britain must admit people from other EU countries into its country, and there has been a major backlash over uncontrolled immigration.  Interestingly this is not racial as is much of the immigration debate in this country, most of the objected to immigrants are from Eastern Europe, especially Poland.  The Leave campaign, described by one former British Foreign Secretary as “Trump with better hair,” has touched a nerve and while most people expect Britain to stay in the EU, there is no guarantee.

Elsewhere in Europe the same forces are at work.  In staid Austria, best known for lederhosen and sachertortes, presidential candidates from both the major centrist parties that have ruled Austrian since the war were rejected, and last week the country almost elected a far right wing nationalist as its president.  The flood of Middle Eastern refugees into Europe has set off a furious backlash across the continent against unfettered immigration.

So when Donald Trump, and to a lesser degree Bernie Sanders, hit out against a privileged elite in Washington that makes economic policy in its own self interest, they strike a deep chord of dissatisfaction with the political establishment, and with an economic recovery that has provided few financial benefits for 80 percent of Americans.

Throughout the western world there is great unhappiness with ossified political parties controlled by privileged bosses and their consultants.  Let’s not forget how this year’s election was supposed to play out: the two great American dynasties, Bush and Clinton, would fight set piece battles a kin to the Hundred Years’ War with monied consultants, hacks and hangeroners competing to bamboozle a pliable electorate.

Trump blew up this comfortable pirouette on the Republican side; Jeb Bush managed something never before achieved in American politics; he raised and spent $100 million and won not a single delegate.  But the scion of the Democratic dynasty, Hillary Clinton, has hardly done better; unable to shake an elderly socialist from Vermont who keeps snapping at her heals.   The more Clinton spends her millions, the lower her approval numbers and the less her lead over Trump.

Secretary Clinton’s focus grouped and heavily polled speeches seem to mimic William Gibbs McAdoo famous dismissal of Warren Harding’s utterances in the 1920 presidential campaign: “An army of pompous phrases marching over the landscape in search of an idea.”

The Democratic super delegates will most likely guarantee the nomination of the increasingly unpopular Clinton.  But the Democrats’ lack of a message that addresses growing unhappiness with the political class is laying the groundwork for the most improbable of all outcomes: the election of the bombastic Trump because he understands what is really happening in America and the western world.