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National Populism is here to stay The expected backlash against Trump didn't materialise

So, farewell, then? Credit:Mandel Ngan/ Getty

So, farewell, then? Credit:Mandel Ngan/ Getty


November 5, 2020   5 mins

Going into the 2020 election, the polls suggested a blow-out for the Democrats. Public opinion showed Joe Biden in 2020, like Clinton in 2016, with a seemingly-insurmountable lead. However the blue wave never occurred. Instead, we’ve seen a red one in favour of the Republican party — and not just Donald Trump, its standard-bearer. If Biden pulls ahead in a few still-disputed states, he will win only by a nose. It also appears that the Republicans will retain majority control of the Senate and pick up seats in the House.

While it is still likely that Joe Biden will win the American presidency, the Democratic party has suffered a shocking setback this year.

What happened? According to the conventional wisdom, shared by Democrats and Never Trump Republicans, Trump’s victory in 2016 had been a fluke. Hillary Clinton would have defeated Trump easily, save for one or more contingent factors — alleged Russian interference, the FBI investigation into Clinton’s personal email server, the weakness and unpopularity of Clinton as a candidate.

In 2020, Democrats and their anti-Trump Republican allies told us, normality would be restored. Other than the socialist Bernie Sanders, it was thought, practically any Democrat would be able to knock off Trump, one of the least popular presidents in American history, even in the state-based electoral college, which in 2000 and 2016 allowed the loser of the popular vote to become president.

The 2020 election was supposed to have been shaped by a wave of public revulsion against not only Trump but also against his party. The Republicans would lose control of the Senate and lose seats in the House of Representatives, giving the Democrats control of all three branches of government. Robert Reich, Bill Clinton’s former Labor Secretary, called for a South African-style Truth and Reconciliation Commission, to identify the accomplices of Trump in his supposed four-year reign of terror. The Republican Party would be exiled to the political wilderness forever.

Or perhaps it would be rebuilt as a new party which came to grips with modern America by internalising the norms of woke Democratic media, academic and business elites, so that in time there would be two enlightened American parties devoted to rooting out white privilege, defunding or radically reforming the police, and promoting a Green New Deal and open borders immigration policy.

The hopes of Democrats for a new era of one-party Democratic rule in Washington, D.C. depended on two groups — college-educated white suburbanites and Hispanics. Their hopes have been disappointed. According to exit polls, white college graduates were almost evenly-split. Democrats, over time, may benefit from the drift of former highly-educated Republicans to their party, but the 2020 result is far from the overwhelming repudiation of Trump by moderate and progressive whites with college degrees that Democrats hoped for.

An even greater shock was movement in the Hispanic vote toward Trump. Overall, according to exit polls, Hispanics favoured Biden by 66 to 32%. But Cuban-Americans with their strong anticommunist tradition helped Trump to win Florida. Trump’s share of the Hispanic vote in Florida rose from 35% in 2016 to nearly half in 2020.

The Democratic advantage with Hispanics between 2016 and 2020 eroded elsewhere, including Georgia (40% advantage to 16%) and Ohio (41% to 24%).  In Texas, Trump’s share of the largely Mexican-American vote climbed from 34 to 40%.  In Starr County, Texas, the county with the largest proportion of Hispanics in the U.S., between 2016 and 2020, the Democratic candidate’s margin of victory shrank from 60% in 2016 to 5%.

In another Texas district along the U.S.-Mexican border, Gina Ortiz Jones, the Democratic candidate who was widely favoured to win, lost her race for a congressional seat to Tony Gonzales, a Republican. Previously the majority-Hispanic district had been represented by an African-American Republican, Will Hurd.

These results are not entirely surprising. Trump did better with Hispanics in 2016 than Romney had in 2012, and the Republican share of the Hispanic vote inched up in the mid-term elections of 2020.

But Exhibit A in the progressive indictment of Trump has been the claim that he is a Mexican-hating xenophobe whose emphasis on curtailing illegal immigration is motivated by white nationalism. Trump’s much-hyped border wall was compared by liberals and leftists to the Berlin Wall. The separation of unauthorised immigrant families in detention (a practice that began under Obama) was Hitlerian and the U.S. Border Patrol was the new Gestapo.

This entire political narrative, shared by the mainstream media and the overwhelmingly-Democratic professoriate with the Democratic party, has imploded, undermined by the drift of Hispanics toward the Republicans in 2016, 2018 and 2020.

The conventional wisdom was right about one thing: Trump was an incredibly weak candidate. By the standards of other presidents, he has been consistently unpopular. He has been a failure in all three of the traditional roles of the U.S. president, who combines the offices of ceremonial head of state, leader of a party in Congress and commander-in-chief of the U.S. military. Trump is incapable of reassuring the public in his role of head of state, as his clownish, narcissistic performance during the early months of the COVID-19 epidemic showed.

As an outsider who won the Republican nomination against the wishes of most Republican leaders, he has always lacked leverage in dealing with Congressional Republicans who would prefer a continuation of Bush era policies to his economic nationalism and rhetorical (more than real) populism. As commander-in-chief, like Obama he has failed to extract the U.S. from simultaneous forever wars in the Middle East and Central Asia. Unlike Obama, who launched U.S. campaigns in Syria, Libya and Yemen, Trump has not started any new wars.

In addition to all of these weaknesses, Trump has been more demonised by the media than any president in history, including Richard Nixon, who was not accused of being a foreign agent as well as a criminal. The Mueller investigation into fanciful claims that he was an agent of Vladimir Putin installed by the Russians in the White House in 2016 consumed most of his term. When Mueller’s legal team absolved Trump, the furious Democratic majority in the House then impeached him over claims of misbehaviour in investigating Joe Biden’s son Hunter’s dubious business dealings in Ukraine. The Republican Senate majority had to save him from being removed from offices.

Nevertheless, this unpopular, weak, and widely-despised president will either win the 2020 election by a hair or lose it by a different hair.  As a result, both Republican and Democratic strategists must be thinking:  what if Trump had been a more attractive, conciliating and competent figure?

The Democrats can take comfort in the fact that they appear to be on the way to winning the popular vote, although that does not matter if they lose the electoral college. But they must be disturbed by the fact that if Biden wins the electoral college as well, it will probably be by a slight margin. Moderate Democrats will argue that their party veered too much to the left on issues like Black Lives Matter, abolishing the police, immigration, and “interrogating white privilege”. Populist Republicans will argue that the Republicans can do even better following a policy of Trumpist national populist conservatism with a less divisive candidate. And both moderate Democrats and populist Republicans will be right.


Michael Lind is a columnist at Tablet and a fellow at New America. His latest book is Hell to Pay: How the Suppression of Wages is Destroying America.


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Jonathan Story
Jonathan Story
3 years ago

This is too negative an assessment: he reduced the flow of illegal immigrants to the major advantage of the lower paid in the US-especially black Americans. He took measures to attract investment back to home soil. He has had a major impact on the judiciary. In foreign pÎlicy, he got the Europeans to finally start taking their defence a bit more seriously. In the Mid East he has helped to transform the situation. On China, he has been no more aggressive than the Washington consensus, and has strengthened ties with Japan and India. He has given a voice to Catholics and Evangelicals, sidelined by the aggressive atheist influences in the Democrat party. He must also be given credit for standing up to the Democrats barrage of permanent hostility. And he did so in the face of the US blob: the Californian hi tech oligarcy, the MSM and the uniformly boring professoriat. He inherited his wealth, whereas the Clinton’s, Obamas, Bidens have acquired theirs through political entrepreneurship. He has also been wrongly labelled as divisive: that title should go first and foremost to Bush II and definitely to Obama, who snuck identity politics into the bloodstream of the US, and despite being an ex-President, never ceases to stir the racial pot. Indeed, I would credit Trump with offering the pathway out of the Democrat fixation with race: look at the quality of his black supporters- the very distinguished Thomas Sowell, Larry Elder, Candace Owens.
The negatives are all to do with style. The substance of his record is rather good.

Hardee Hodges
Hardee Hodges
3 years ago
Reply to  Jonathan Story

I stand amazed at his fortitude. The dogs nipping at his heels were countered by a constant barrage of tweets. Few would have tolerated the continual barrage of negativity. His other many defects were simply ignored by his supporters. The exercise of Presidential power was limited in justified caution, surprising in such a volatile person.

Alex Tickell
Alex Tickell
3 years ago
Reply to  Jonathan Story

Well said Jonathan. Donald John Trump the man was demonised by the media since before the 2016 election, alongside the ranks of opponents discussed in your article, there was another very important demographic that hated DJ, WOKE women and women influenced by WOKE superiors in the workplace. This was simply a failure to understand basic human nature and the differences between men and women. Donald Trump’s remarks caught on tape many years ago concerning the effects of celebrity on a certain type of woman, were construed by the media as a sign that Mr Trump was a rapist….this lie stuck throughout his Presidency and was a major cause of his defeat in .2020. During this campaign I spoke to a large number of women who were “Anti- Trump”, when asked for the reason almost all gave the remarks made in the tape and that it proved that the President was a misogynist and probable rapist.
Due to the position of many women in the work environment, most find it difficult to buck the trend of WOKERY preferring to go along with the crowd. The incident was never properly explained when the tape appeared and the ideology was allowed to fester.
The simple truth is the natural difference between the psychology of the sexes and the new era of so called equality has brought these differences into sharp focus, Woke women seem to believe that they have been dealt a bum hand, given their menstrual cycle, the pain of childbirth and the curtailment of self through the nurturing of their children, while men see nothing but pleasure in the sexual act WOKE and “equality of outcome is driving a wedge between male and female a split which bodes ill for the human race.

Jeremy Smith
Jeremy Smith
3 years ago
Reply to  Jonathan Story

“He has had a major impact on the judiciary”
He appointed judges from a list approved by the Federalist Society. ANY Republican president would have appointed the same judges. The whole process was managed (!!!!) by an insider – the Senate Leader Mitch McConnell.
If Judge Judy said something positive about Trump, the stable genius would have appointed her to the Supreme Court.

oliver.goodman07
oliver.goodman07
3 years ago

Weak seems an odd word to use of someone who, with no prior experience, managed to take control of the office, achieve a sizable chunk of his agenda and drive his oppenents into psychosis.

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
3 years ago

Did you see that Naom Chomsky described Trump as ‘the most evil person in human history’ in the New Yorker?

And people like Sam Harris have claimed that Trump is worse than Hitler. These people are, as you say, psychotic.

Dorothy Slater
Dorothy Slater
3 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

I seriously doubt that the Noam Chormsky of Manufacturing Consent fame would have found himself in the pages of the New Yorker had he NOT given Trump the title of “most evil person in human history”. As a long time New Yorker reader – who no longer is – I can’t remember seeing him within its pages.

Jane Jones
Jane Jones
3 years ago
Reply to  Dorothy Slater

I, took am a longtime NYer reader who no longer is. I doni’t even miss it, actually. TNY under David Remnick is a neset of crypto-Zionism. Chomskly is also a Zionist. He, like Biden, should be spared further embarrassment. And I am also a longtime Chomsky fan! But his commentary is not longer useful.

Simon Denis
Simon Denis
3 years ago
Reply to  Jane Jones

Oops – I have deleted my original post as it assumed you shared a Conservative outlook; but talk of “crypto-Zionism” worries me.

Andrew Baldwin
Andrew Baldwin
3 years ago
Reply to  Simon Denis

It worries me too. I haven’t read the New Yorker much under Remnick or anyone else, but Remnick’s is a wonderful account of the last days of the Soviet Union. I have always been impressed by the oversized contribution that American Jewish writers have made to the literature on Russian and Soviet history, Remnick among them. I suppose he supports the existence of the state of Israel. He would be a very odd sort of Jew if he didn’t. But crypto-Zionist? What does the word even mean? He pretends he isn’t a Zionist, but actually is?

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
3 years ago
Reply to  Dorothy Slater

Yes, the intellectual demise of the New Yorker is a great shame. I always enjoyed it very much, but it’s garbage now. Sadly, the New York Review of Books – to which I once subscribed – has gone the same way. And the same applies to The Atlantic, of course.

tiffeyekno
tiffeyekno
3 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

The LBC lunatic James O’Brien often channels (I think thats the current word) Noam Chomsky. That is enough to make me head for the hills.

David George
David George
3 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

Naom Chomsky was a great supporter of Pol Pot, even after the mass murders, the killing fields, became known. Let’s just say his moral judgement is a little suspect.

“The man who champions school choice hates the poor.

The man who presided over the biggest increase in median household earnings in decades hates the middle class.

The man who began closing the wealth gap is only in it for his own financial gain.

The man who reduced our dependence on communist China hates democracy.

The man who reopened the Iron Range and created hundreds of thousands of high paying resource jobs hates the working class.

The first man in American history whose net worth went down while he was president is a greedy fat cat.

The man who instituted prison reform and criminal justice reform is a racist sociopath.

The man who had a record number of small donations to his campaign and funded much of it out of his own pocket is a Wall Street shill.

The man who doesn’t take a salary as president is not paying his fair share.

The man who appointed the first openly gay person to his cabinet is anti-gay.

The man who wants to take his case to court and let the court decide is a dictator.

The man who followed the constitution and allowed the states to generate their own coronavirus policy failed on coronavirus.

The man who presided over the single largest quarterly rise in GDP is destroying the economy.

The man who told his supporters to vote in person so there’d be no cheating is trying to steal the election.

We are officially living in upside down land.”

Karen Straughan

Add to that the man who launched the Women’s Global Development and Prosperity Initiative to empower women to fulfill their economic potential was a p***y grabbing misogynist.

David George
David George
3 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

Naom Chomsky? A strong supporter of Pol Pot even after the mass murders, The Killing Fields became widely known. Let’s just say his judgement is a little suspect.

“The man who spearheaded a global initiative to decriminalize homosexuality is a homophobe.

The man who negotiated 4 historic peace deals and managed to avoid having to go to war against a NATO ally is a warmonger.

The man who brought troops home does not value the US military.

The man who fixed the VA thinks people wounded or killed in war are “losers and suckers”.

The man who increased funding for black colleges and universities and locked it in for 10 years hates black people.

The man who created Opportunity Zones to revitalize distressed communities hates minorities.

The man who champions school choice hates the poor.

The man who presided over the biggest increase in median household earnings in decades hates the middle class.

The man who began closing the wealth gap is only in it for his own financial gain.

The man who reduced our dependence on communist China hates democracy.

The man who reopened the Iron Range and created hundreds of thousands of high paying resource jobs hates the working class.

The first man in American history whose net worth went down while he was president is a greedy fat cat.

The man who instituted prison reform and criminal justice reform is a racist sociopath.

The man who had a record number of small donations to his campaign and funded much of it out of his own pocket is a Wall Street shill.

The man who doesn’t take a salary as president is not paying his fair share.

The man who appointed the first openly gay person to his cabinet is anti-gay.

The man who wants to take his case to court and let the court decide is a dictator.

The man who followed the constitution and allowed the states to generate their own coronavirus policy failed on coronavirus.

The man who presided over the single largest quarterly rise in GDP is destroying the economy.

The man who told his supporters to vote in person so there’d be no cheating is trying to steal the election.

We are officially living in upside down land.”

Karen Straughan

Add to that the man who launched the Women’s Global Development and Prosperity Initiative to empower women to fulfill their economic potential was a p***y grabbing misogynist.

Jonathan Ellman
Jonathan Ellman
3 years ago

The Democrats main political statement was a negative one, ‘We hate Trump’. When the vacuousness of their identity politics and the hypocrisy of their Wall Street sycophancy becomes undeniable even to the wokists, something new will be required to appease the public or at least to win the next election.

Nick Wright
Nick Wright
3 years ago

“The Democrats main political statement was a negative one, ‘We hate Trump’.”
So you never noticed that the Republicans’ “only”, political statement was, “We love Trump”?” Can you think of any others?

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
3 years ago
Reply to  Nick Wright

They loved Trump. They loved the lack of new wars and the ME peace agreements. They loved the record levels of unemployment pre-Covid. They loved the fact that he was doing something about unrestricted immigration etc – although he came nowhere near to matching Obama’s 4 million deportations. They loved the tax cut, which benefited almost everyone. There was a lot to love.

Mick Jackson
Mick Jackson
3 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

New wars affect very few. In the ME he betrayed the Kurds and cowed to Turkey, although few really care. The employment pre-COVID was mainly very low paying jobs. Most illgalimmigrants fly in and their temporary visas expire.A wall does not help. The tax cut is just temporary and starts rolling back next year after the election for those earning under $200,000. And this is all you have? We have abandoned allies, sucked up to dictators, have huge divisions in our society, Trump has been a total failure and is rated with Andrew Johnson and James Buchanan as the 3 worst presidents ever.

Jane Jones
Jane Jones
3 years ago
Reply to  Mick Jackson

Mick, you are behind the curve with your argument. This is 2020, not 2016. The proposition was that there was no rational reason to support Trump. That simply is not true. Shall we go into the details of Joe Biden’s record? The fact is the TDS has driven the political “dialogue” in the USA since Trump’s election.

kor anin
kor anin
3 years ago
Reply to  Mick Jackson

“New wars affect very few.”

Wow. The myopic evil of Democrats. When a person flippantly describes the death and destruction wars cause in this way — WTF? But it’s Trump who is evil? Those who callously and thoughtlessly condemn millions to death, misery and poverty – you are all good people right? I used to be a Democrat — I’d be ashamed to call myself one today. I would especially ashamed to say what you just said.

Juilan Bonmottier
Juilan Bonmottier
3 years ago
Reply to  kor anin

I know, well picked up -the sort of psychopathic dismissiveness so extraordinary one flies past it because you can’t believe it was said, but what an utterly, utterly crazy statement to make.

Adrian
Adrian
3 years ago
Reply to  Mick Jackson

New wars have caused the mass migration that pushed the UK out of the EU. They fuelled the Jihadism that endangers our civil liberties at home.

The west spends trillions of dollars smashing up some country and then walks away from the mess they inevitably leave behind.

I don’t like Trump one bit, but if he pledged to stop invading countries unless they invaded someone first, and then only to smash up their tanks and whatnot, I’d back that.

Dave Tagge
Dave Tagge
3 years ago
Reply to  Nick Wright

Whether or not one agrees with it, Trump ran on a platform with several clear policy elements to it in 2016:

– a traditional Republican commitment to low taxes and not expanding the regulatory state.

– an “America First” foreign policy in matters of both trade and national security. The former meaning not joining the TPP, renegotiating NAFTA (or withdrawing if that wasn’t possible), and (most of all) stopping China from “ripping us off”, using tariffs if necessary. The latter meaning a skepticism toward foreign wars and making allies able to do so (e.g., Western Europe) shoulder the cost of paying for their own defense.

– border security and stopping illegal immigration (“build the wall”)

I have a lot of issues with Trump. I don’t agree with some of his policies, and I hugely dislike the tweeting and brazen lying.

He does, however, rank near the top among recent U.S. presidents in “Did he try to pursue the policies on which he campaigned?”

If Trump does narrowly lose, there’s a good argument that he would have won if he’d been more like 2016 Trump in spending more campaign time about the policies he’s going to pursue.

He could have tried to focus on a 2020 message of “the pandemic will end (and Operation Warp Speed therapies and vaccines are part of that) and we’re going to get the economy back to the best economy that we had, before the Chinese virus derailed us”. The abrasiveness, insults, and personalized feuds with reporters were part of Trump’s package in 2016. In 2016, however, he presented a vision for the country much more than he has laid out a vision for what he would do if he’s re-elected.

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
3 years ago

‘The conventional wisdom was right about one thing: Trump was an incredibly weak candidate. By the standards of other presidents, he has been consistently unpopular.’

On the day of the election Trump had an approval rating of 47%. I believe this was higher than Obama when he was running for re-election. No president has failed to win re-election with an approval rating that high.

Moreover, he won more votes in 2020 than in 2016 (Obama’s vote declined when re-elected) and would have won the election had it not been for mail-in ballot harvesting and various other frauds in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania.

pbreitenbach
pbreitenbach
3 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

“Consistently unpopular”. Not one day.

Easily the worst president in our lifetimes. Good riddance.

Zhirayr Nersessian
Zhirayr Nersessian
3 years ago
Reply to  pbreitenbach

Explain please. I keep hearing this but with no backing.

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
3 years ago
Reply to  pbreitenbach

That’s an absurd statement. How was Trump worse than, for instance, the war monger Bush and his corrupt cronies? Thomas Sowell, the renowned black academic, considers Obama to be ‘the worst president ever.’ And many of Clinton’s actions led to long-term disaster for American workers.

By any measure rational measure Trump did a lot of good and actually delivered on many of his promises, despite the massive distractions of the Russia collusion hoax and the fake impeachment. If the media wasn’t overwhelmingly hostile, and if his manner and syntax were more refined, he would have been re-elected in a landslide. As it is, he would have been re-elected had it not been for mass mail-in ballot fraud.

Nick Wright
Nick Wright
3 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

“had it not been for mass mail-in ballot fraud.”
Evidence-vacuum alert!

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
3 years ago
Reply to  Nick Wright

There is growing evidence of massive mail-in voter fraud, which was always going to happen.

Simon Denis
Simon Denis
3 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

It’s curious, is it not, that the left which loves to pose as “evidence based” and “rational”, whilst painting its Liberal and Conservative opponents as full of “inchoate rage”, actually flinches from evidence when finally confronted with it; and retreats all too readily into slogans and smears? Rather in the way that certain discredited historians who try to minimise or mitigate the crimes of extreme nationalism and extreme socialism also pine for those crimes to be repeated, the left prattles of reason, fairness and moderation whilst conniving at their opposites every day. Whilst their chums are sweatily conjuring up a hundred thousand phantom or duplicate votes, they scream and shout about democracy; whilst their footsoldiers are calling members of minorities hideous names for presuming to disagree with them, they scream and shout about “justice”. On and on their warped hypocrisy goes, to the point of madness.

Jane Jones
Jane Jones
3 years ago
Reply to  Nick Wright

Here is some evidence, and this has been reinforced by other similar stories:

I do think there is plenty of latitude for fraud with mail-in ballots.

I received my ballot in the mail but took up to the polling place to vote early.

When I arrived there and showed the ballot that I already had I was told to use that one. If I had not had it with me I would have been given a ballot there.

Then I would have had two ballots, one at home. I could have returned home and used the mail-in one.This is an extremely small town where everyone knows me and I expect someone would have noticed that I had already voted when the second ballot arrived. Probably.

That is, if someone checks off the names of those who have voted name by name when mail-ins arrive.

But what about in a larger community or city? I should think many voters would give it a try to use the ballot they got in the mail in addition to the one they got at the polling place.

Especially since the identifying envelopes are removed and the ballots are just sorted into piles. So any mistakes in matching envelopes to voter lists will not be caught later. At that point there is AFAI can see no way to ascertain whether there are duplicate ballots.

IOW the problems I see with mail-in ballots is the great opportunity they provide for voters to end up with TWO BALLOTS IN THEIR HANDS.

I had received a postcard from the state atty genl’s office—I’m sure it went out to all registered voters—which I could return with a box checked off if I wanted to vote by mail. I wasn’t sure of my plans, so I checked it off and got a ballot in the mail about three weeks ago. It was the same as an absentee ballot.

After that I could have gone and voted early at any time between Oct. 15 and Oct. 30. Suppose I had voted on Oct. 15. Then on Oct. 30, or 31, or Nov. 2, or Nov. 2, I send the other ballot and get a postmark on it.

Honestly, people, this is a no-brainer opportunity for double voting.

Another opportunity: My mother died some years ago. Someone put the wrong place of residence on her death certificate. Subsequently I was unable to remove her name from the voting roll at her actual city of residence. The notifications to remove names from voter rolls go by the info on the death certificate. How many of those are out there floating around?

The whole idea of mailing people ballots and then letting them get a second ballot on election day is obviously a very bad idea.

All mail-in ballots must be checked off carefully, name by name against voter rolls to make sure there isn’t already a check by the name (i.e., the person voted already). One person, one vote. Mail-in ballots offer obvious opportunities to subvert this.

Quentin Vole
Quentin Vole
3 years ago
Reply to  Nick Wright

“No evidence for ballot fraud” claim the same people who’ve spent the last four years screaming “Russian collusion” with nary a shred of evidence.

Andrew Baldwin
Andrew Baldwin
3 years ago
Reply to  Nick Wright

“Joeck also spoke with outraged Nevada voter Jill Stokke on Thursday morning, who said she couldn’t vote in-person because her mail-in ballot had been returned and accepted. Stokke insisted that she never received her ballot. When Joeck asked Gloria about the incident, the Clark County representative implied that she was lying.” We are talking about a 79-year-old blind woman who has always voted in person. She can’t vote by herself and has always brought someone with her to help her vote her choice. Trump complained bitterly that it was encouraging voter fraud to mail out ballots to everyone, and encouraged fraud. Here’s one handicapped woman who has voted every year and won’t vote this year because of mail-in voting fraud that Trump predicted while the media sneered “unfounded allegations”, blah, blah, blah. The Democratic talking heads babble about voter suppression ad nauseam. Wasn’t her vote suppressed? Maybe to you this is still an evidence-vacuum, Nick. One can’t prove that the fraudulent vote cast was cast for Biden. That’s because there is a secret ballot. I haven’t seen anything to say the blind lady was a Trump supporter. But one can make at least an upper bound estimate that two votes out of Biden’s slim lead in the Nevada popular vote comes from this act of fraud. And Biden backs the imbecilic system for dealing with mail-in ballots that made this fraud possible. You can find lots more fraud out there if you read around, Nick. Seek and you will find.
Any jurisdiction that just mails out a ton of mail-in ballots, even to voters who would much prefer to vote in person, is edging towards banana republic status, if it isn’t already there.

Adrian
Adrian
3 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

I am not a fan of Trump.

But unlike Bush2, he didn’t start a war.
Would Clinton2 have started a war? Who knows.

Not starting a war is about the most important thing an American president can do, so good for him.

Alex Lekas
Alex Lekas
3 years ago
Reply to  pbreitenbach

Worst how? Not economically. Not in terms of how we did not engage in a single new war. This is a talking point based on nothing but emotion. It’s become an all too typical substitute for debate.

Alex Lekas
Alex Lekas
3 years ago

Pollsters have now joined journos as people who have essentially killed their own profession. Along the way, they and more than a few members of the political class have managed to erode public confidence in one more institution – elections. The stories of suspected fraud or duly-certified poll watchers being barred access are mounting. The putting of Arizona into Biden’s tally had to be walked back when reality on the ground made the claim mathematically challenged. This is not a good sign for a place that fancies itself a republic.

David Bell
David Bell
3 years ago

It looks like Biden will win the Electoral College with a comfortable majority now and that means the Democrats will be looking for blood. It will start of with demands that Republicans “accept the result”, the exact opposite of what the Democrats did in 2016. When the enviable investigation into Hunter Biden starts expect a wave of indignation and acquisitions form every Democrat.

The most worrying aspect of this will be the revenge the House Democrats will look to take on Trump, his family and his team. Expect every aspect of Trump and his children’s lives to be pulled apart, publicly. Under Obama the IRS launched tax audits of political opponents, that will probably happen again.

The Democrats will not learn, they will see Biden’s victory as a vindication of their “hate Trump” narrative and they will take every opportunity to take revenge on him and his supporters.

Nick Wright
Nick Wright
3 years ago
Reply to  David Bell

“Under Obama the IRS launched tax audits of political opponents, that will probably happen again.”

But what could there be to worry about? The tax affairs of the Trump dynasty are famously honest, law-abiding and transparent.

Alex Lekas
Alex Lekas
3 years ago
Reply to  Nick Wright

But what could there be to worry about?
if they can do it without restraint to a president, what recourse does an ordinary American have? And the IRS has been privy to “the tax affairs of the Trump dynasty” for decades now. Yet only when the man was elected president did the same people who previously fawned over him adopt a different tune.

billhickey105
billhickey105
3 years ago
Reply to  Alex Lekas

Yes. Only when he became a Republican presidential contender did this man start hearing a few new tunes.

Like he’s an anti-Semite, this man with a Jewish son-in-law and grandchildren.

Like he’s a xenophobe, this man whose wife is the first foreign-born, immigrant First Lady.

Like he’s a racist, this man who lived in multi-racial NYC most of his life, and has life-long friends and business associates of all races.

Face it, friends: As the biased news media, tendentious polls and leftist professoriat show, we live in an Empire of Lies.

Dave Tagge
Dave Tagge
3 years ago
Reply to  billhickey105

Also, do you recall see much (if any) reporting about Richard Grenell as a history-making appointment?

He was, per my understanding, the first openly gay cabinet member in U.S. history when he was appointed acting director of national intelligence earlier this year.

Feel certain that there would have been fawning, front page coverage by the usual suspect newspapers (NY Times, WaPo, etc.) plus CNN/MSNBC if that happened under a Democratic administration. Because it was Trump, this was a footnote in coverage of Grenell taking the job.

Now, I should say that it’s the coverage (and decision-making) that I’d prefer. Grenell was put in the job by Trump on an assessment of his merits, with being gay not holding him back (and presumably not helping him either).

It’s of course laughable, however, to think that’s because those media outlets have backed away from letting identity politics color their reporting. It does so more than ever. They just couldn’t handle the cognitive dissonance of having to report that it was Trump who made the appointment. And, to top of it off, having to highlight that there could be such a thing as a gay man with foreign policy views they find repugnant.

Judy Johnson
Judy Johnson
3 years ago
Reply to  Dave Tagge

I am in the UK so please excuse my question if it is one for which most in the US would know the answer! It is: why would the Democrats object to the appointment of Grenell because he is gay?

Dave Tagge
Dave Tagge
3 years ago
Reply to  Judy Johnson

Thanks for the question. What I’m intending to say is that most on the left in the U.S. prefer to think that gay conservatives don’t exist.

For someone on the Left who is obsessed with identity politics, the very existence of a gay person who supports any Republican – much less Donald Trump – isn’t something with which they want to grapple. In their worldview, a “real” gay person votes only for left-wing candidates and has to be vehemently opposed to Donald Trump. And it does have the grain of truth that, statistically, gay voters are more likely to vote for Democrats.

In the left-leaning U.S. media, I’d say that the same thing typically happens regarding blacks and women. If a Democratic party candidate is the first person from either group to be elected to some office, it’s hailed as a historic first. If a Republican candidate does so, it’s a barely discussed footnote.

Dave Tagge
Dave Tagge
3 years ago
Reply to  billhickey105

I don’t know if there’s any actual column where someone has simultaneously called Trump an anti-Semite and complained that Kushner has unwarranted influence at the White House. Opinion writers are (just barely) self-aware enough to catch how odd that would be.

I feel confident, however, that several individual opinion columnists have made both those points at various times. Have to think that some individual opinion columnist at the NY Times has managed to make them both in the same week.

rosie mackenzie
rosie mackenzie
3 years ago
Reply to  Dave Tagge

His family changed their name from Drumpf to Trump so as not to offend their Jewish tenants.

David Bell
David Bell
3 years ago
Reply to  Nick Wright

Have you ever been involved in a tax audit? Being law abiding and transparent are not a defences!

Hardee Hodges
Hardee Hodges
3 years ago
Reply to  Nick Wright

I suspect the Trump tax returns were only useful for political gain. Leafing the stacks of paper on Trump might expose clever but legal schemes. Congress needs to be careful in that their carefully constructed returns might be leaked in revenge. How is it that they become so wealthy on that paltry salary?

Kevin Ryan
Kevin Ryan
3 years ago
Reply to  David Bell

I like the “his children’s lives” as if we were talking about frightened little ones hiding under the stairs, instead of the spoiled adult progeny of a tax -evading plutocrat who have used their father’s presidency to enrich themselves.

David Bell
David Bell
3 years ago
Reply to  Kevin Ryan

“instead of the spoiled adult progeny of a tax -evading plutocrat” Lets split this down a bit:

1. Spoiled Adult progeny – If that makes them fair game, why did Biden get so worked up about Hunter Biden and his use of his father’s position to further himself in deals that appear to be less than “clean”, never mind the drugs, etc. The evidence for Biden Jnr was provided by him on his laptop but I bet the Democrats go looking into all Trump’s children, including his youngest son.
2. A tax -evading plutocrat – if that is the case why did the IRS accept his tax returns? Either the figures printed for the total tax paid was BS or it was correct and the calculation was totally legal. You can’t demand people follow the law then complain when someone who does follow the law gets a result you don’t like!

Jane Jones
Jane Jones
3 years ago
Reply to  David Bell

I don’t know whether Obama can be classified as a tax avoider, but I do wonder where the $$$ came from for him to purchase a big, expensive spread on Martha’s Vineyard Island. And I reckon taxpayers pick up the bill for his security there.

Dave Tagge
Dave Tagge
3 years ago
Reply to  Jane Jones

I’m no fan of Obama, but:

– All U.S. ex-Presidents have lifetime Secret Service protection. I view it as a reasonable practice.

– He made a fair amount of money from book royalties. Forbes estimates that the total from his 3 books was about $15 million.

– He and Michelle have both made speeches post-Presidency with reported 6-figure fees attached.

– They’ve got plenty of ongoing income. Michelle’s book (released 2018) sold millions of copies. They’ve got a production deal with Netflix.

kor anin
kor anin
3 years ago
Reply to  Dave Tagge

The speeches especially — nobody drops six figures of wisdom in 45 minutes — look to me like bribe laundering.

Dave Tagge
Dave Tagge
3 years ago
Reply to  kor anin

The speaking fees are always a bad look if someone later goes back into politics, but the rationale for them isn’t wisdom from the speech. It’s that having a speaker such as an ex-president is a great way to guarantee attendance at an event such as an industry conference and/or to impress clients.

Let’s say, for example, that I run an investment bank and really want to make sure that a bunch of CEO’s and CFO’s show up at my firm’s healthcare industry conference. I want them there because part of that will be that my firm’s employees schmooze them and angle for future business. The opportunity to be in the room with an ex-president – and perhaps more importantly get a handshake and photo – is a draw.

Star athletes and coaches – both active and retired – can get similar amounts of money for similar types of events.

Alex Lekas
Alex Lekas
3 years ago
Reply to  Kevin Ryan

do you have evidence of his tax evasion or is this just the latest talking point you’ve been told to parrot? Because avoidance is not evasion; avoidance is what most people do when filing. But since you’re upset about children using parental connections for self-enrichment, I look forward to your critique of Hunter, and perhaps one of the waste of space known as Chelsea.

Last Jacobin
Last Jacobin
3 years ago
Reply to  Alex Lekas

There’s a great deal of Whataboutery in the air today!

Juilan Bonmottier
Juilan Bonmottier
3 years ago
Reply to  Kevin Ryan

no doubt they will be first on your execution list.

Mick Jackson
Mick Jackson
3 years ago
Reply to  David Bell

Trump has not accepted the results. Hillary did even though she had more votes.

David Bell
David Bell
3 years ago
Reply to  Mick Jackson

I thing there are some legitimate questions to ask about postal votes (we all know what can has happened here) but in the end they will only be minor and not affect the result. Trump will accept the result then. That appears to be his nature

Juilan Bonmottier
Juilan Bonmottier
3 years ago
Reply to  David Bell

Nothing the hard left loves more than a good old scapegoating show trial and purge.

Pete Marsh
Pete Marsh
3 years ago

Hard left Democrat Alexandria Ocasio-Cortes is already tweeting about compiling ‘lists’ of Trump supporters and sympathisers and hinting at dark punishments for them. This wing of the Dems want to turn the USA into Venezuela.
With any luck the US Dems will do a UK Labour and tear themselves apart over the next 4 years.

Alex Tickell
Alex Tickell
3 years ago
Reply to  Pete Marsh

Agree, Biden will step down before mid term, to be replaced by a socialist woman to huge acclaim. The start will then be made on turning America into a socialist state and the inevitable descent into poverty, anarchy, and in the special case of the United States…..Civil War.

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
3 years ago
Reply to  Pete Marsh

The infighting is already starting.

billwald123
billwald123
3 years ago

“No one ever lost money underestimating the intelligence of the American public,” H.L. Mencken.

jim payne
jim payne
3 years ago

In the UK, we have the same attitude to Brexit and brexiteers. Remainers will do ANYTHING to reverse that vote. Trump’s not my favourite but he was voted IN.

Andrew D
Andrew D
3 years ago
Reply to  jim payne

No he wasn’t

Mick Jackson
Mick Jackson
3 years ago
Reply to  jim payne

He lost the popular vote by nearly 3 million. The American people rejected Trump. Unfortunately we have the dysfunctional, elitist, slave-influenced, 18th centuryy undemocratic garbage called the electoral college. they elected him.

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
3 years ago

It’s here to stay unless it is crushed by the media, Big Tech. many of the politicians, academia, all our institutions and Soros, Bezos and Gates et al. It’s a race against time and a battle for democracy and some sort of freedom.

john.hurley2018
john.hurley2018
3 years ago

i suspect that those who hate Trump are threatened that it may be their societal judgement that is out of whack?

G Harris
G Harris
3 years ago

I don’t feel sorry for him per se as, for me, like a good many Americans, I judged Trump far more by his often criminally under-reported honourable actions than his all too frequently dishonourable public pronouncements, but the primary cited reason he lost this election just utterly baffles me.

I mean, after all, had the election been a year earlier, Trump would have been a shoo in.

Trump lost this election not because he’s, arguably rightly, a divisive, populist, thin-skinned, narcissistic, sociopathic, media and social media-addicted nutcase, but because of his perceived mishandling of the Covid crisis by the judgement of just enough voters across the country to seal his political fate.

The weird thing here is that the increasingly disunited states is still, for the time being, a federalised union in which the various elected politicians, be they Democratic or Republican, of these increasingly and worryingly disparate states are able to exercise a considerable amount of autonomy in how they choose to deal with the coronavirus and yet, as the earlier Roosevelt famously said as US President, ‘the buck’ apparently always ‘stops here’.

With this ‘adage’ apparently set in stone, what will be interesting then is to see quite how the Democrats under Biden deal with the coronavirus ‘going forward’ and whether they are able to square the, thus far, seemingly impossible circle of suppressing it and keeping the economy and employment in rude health whilst the rest of the Western world, almost without fail, has similarly failed to do so AND, most crucially, whether this failure, should it come, will be laid fairly and squarely and at Biden’s door, as it was Trump’s, should he fail to deliver.

Alex Tickell
Alex Tickell
3 years ago
Reply to  G Harris

Of course they won’t blame Biden who will not serve out his term in any case. You rightly point out that every Western government is in a fix over balancing the economy and giving an appearance of empathy for those affected directly by the virus, but you fail to take into account that the media can spin any way it likes and the virus which was spun against President Trump will be used to promote Biden or whoever succeeds him as the saviour of the nation. The media finished Donal John and he knew the danger right from the beginning, that is why he never stopped telling anyone who would listen how biased and corrupt they were…….We are all going to take a good hard look at what is happening to democracy in the very near future.

ard10027
ard10027
3 years ago

Trump and so-called “Trumpism” was not rejected by the masses and not even by the more dispassionate of the supposedly “educated” classes for one good reason – the antics of its frontman notwithstanding, it’s not a crackpot philosophy. In reality, it’s simply a return to more basic, commonsense, small c conservative values. People look at it on the one side with a somewhat sentimental attachment for better days gone by, and on the other they see looters and arsonists burning their own cities to the ground, corrupt Democrat DAs protecting the criminals and corrupt Democrat mayors standing down the police in the face of these Demorat Party “brownshirts”, and they think, “wait a minute, TRUMP’S the fascist?”

Trump tapped into something working people like me who don’t have high paying, high status, highly qualified jobs have been railing about – completely unheard and unheeded – for years. We have a ruling caste made up of nincompoops who, because they spent a few years on a university campus learning Marxist buzz phrases like “white privilge” and studiously eschewing things like Socratic method and Thomistic dispassion because they’re too “white”, actually have themselves convinced that they know things. Those of us who maintain the machine that carries them are aware that they know nothing, but by the journalists who speak for them, the career politicians who represent them and the academics who train them in their stupidity – as well as by these cretins themselves – we are hated. It’s not just a simple class division, it’s full, unapologetic hatred. Our continued existence, drawing air into our lungs out of THEIR atmosphere physically sickens them. It’s not just that they don’t care about us, they want us dead and erased from history. It offends them that we are not already so, but the idea that we might go out and actually defy them at the ballot enrages them.

Words like “scum”, “vermin” and”filth” swirl around their pea-sized brains whenever they think of us, but they know that to use such language would reveal them for what they are, so instead we get words like “hater”, “bigot” and “racist”. There is not the slightest effort to understand, to try to figure out what drives us or to actually show enough respect to honestly try to sell whatever they have to sell. That would require humility, a tacit acceptance of our right to reject them. But, like the Junkers of old Prussia, you don’t accord that level of respect to the peasantry. They were created to rule, and the rest to serve. They just don’t get that that’s not what America is about.

But Trump does. And that’s why there was no blue tsunami. And I seriously doubt there ever will be again, not if, as I hope and believe, he’s done enough to re-ignite the idealism of the Republican Party. And remember, the Republicans were the ones who freed the Democrats’ slaves.

cjhartnett1
cjhartnett1
3 years ago

Another Brit know nothing from some ex broadsheet that nobody buys ,let alone reads .
Apparently one of Trump’s “weaknesses”…according to our lily livered colonial fop…was ( unlike Obama)…that he didn’t start any new wars….he actually says this!
No, just got four Nobel Peace Prize nominations, met Kim at the Korean border, made speeches in Warsaw, Riyadh and Mt Rushmore that will go down in history, got Israel and Sunni Islam on terms for peace, got NATO to stump up, dealt with MS-13 monsters freely marauding over our borders, dealt with IS , Iran and China pretty well and had a decent economy favouring the toughest, poorest sectors of our nation until the Covid scamdemic.
But he tweets, is a bit blunt and isn’t gaga. Hasnt rinsed the taxpayer like the Dems did, and will again.
And he’s loved by half this country. Who won’t let him be cheated of his victory given what you media scum and the deep state are currently doing.
Supreme Court asap.

matthewspring
matthewspring
3 years ago
Reply to  cjhartnett1

Michael Lind is one of yours, my dear lady!
https://en.wikipedia.org/wi
I quite enjoyed his work on the Vietnam War, although it predictably made American liberals foam at the mouth!

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
3 years ago

Not sure if Unherd will let me do this, but here is link to Biden admitting to the mass fraud, a few days before the election. It’s pretty much the only truthful and coherent thing he said in the entire campaign:

https://www.youtube.com/wat

G Harris
G Harris
3 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

To be fair, that’s a mighty short, suddenly cut short link there which, I suspect without having seen it, Biden then goes on to make a mockery of the notion.

Do you know what follows?

Mick Jackson
Mick Jackson
3 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

He obvious;y meant voter fraud investigation which is whjy you or someone else cut it off

Annie Anetts
Annie Anetts
3 years ago

Paul Craig Roberts, journalist, has interesting comments on this. @ Free West Media

Nick Wright
Nick Wright
3 years ago

“Moderate Democrats will argue that their party veered too much to the
left on issues like … abolishing the police …”
“Abolishing the police?” I must have swerved away from this particular veer. Any evidence of the DP calling for elimination of the police-force? It’s just a made-up taradiddle, if you ask me.

Alex Lekas
Alex Lekas
3 years ago
Reply to  Nick Wright

Actually, yes, there is evidence. No less than AOC was crystal clear in saying defund means defund. More than one city council has moved toward that end. Ironically in Minnesota, the same elected officials who at first wanted defunding suddenly noticed that crime was going up. It’s almost as if stupid govt decisions or slogans can have unpleasant consequences.

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
3 years ago
Reply to  Nick Wright

Numerous Democrat-run cites have defunded the police, and some of them have expressed an intention to abolish the police. Needless to say, these cities have seen a massive increase in crime and homicide.

Last Jacobin
Last Jacobin
3 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

Defunding the Police is not abolishing the Police.

Dan Poynton
Dan Poynton
3 years ago
Reply to  Last Jacobin

I think that’s perhaps a bit disingenuous, Mark. I agree that it technically does not have to mean “abolish”, as it could just mean to reduce funding. However it could also mean to reduce ALL funding, which would indeed mean “abolish”. And the cynical trick of this wording was that many people were sincerely (but rather unrealistically, most would agree) using it to mean “abolish”, while others were meaning “reduce funding”. The spin-doctors who injected the phrase into the mainstream left narrative were laughing all the way to the bank due to its very ambiguity, since while many of the public (on both sides) were using it in the “abolish” sense, they could plausibly claim they had exclusively meant it in the “reduce” sense.

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
3 years ago
Reply to  Last Jacobin

Tell that to the families of the countless people who have already died to a substantially reduced police presence in their neighbourhood. Austin reduced the police budget by just $20 million. Their homicide rate this year is up 40%. And assuming this budget cut was made in the summer, that will probably be something like 80% if you measure from the point where the budget was cut.

Juilan Bonmottier
Juilan Bonmottier
3 years ago
Reply to  Last Jacobin

Well then perhaps they should state openly and honestly what they do mean then? ‘Defund’ is such a deliberately ambiguous choice of words for a policy. And what organisation, if you feel it is not performing well, do you ever sincerely hope to improve by cutting its funding? It’s clearly a punitive, not a restorative gesture. If we defunded things that failed to do their jobs sufficiently well then we could start with the failing education system -let’s ‘defund’ schools -great idea! Whilst we are at it, let’s ‘defund’ social care -inspired! In fact let’s ‘defund’ everything! I had no idea it was so easy to solve complex societal problems -you just cut the funding -genius! Cost effective too, because if things get worse, presumably the solution is just to cut the funding further. And if things get really bad they could end up owing you! A tidy profit from these failing services.

I have never heard such an absurdly dumb idea as ‘defund’ the police.