It’s possible that after November 3, pundits will be talking about how President Donald Trump won reelection and bounced back from all the polls that, in June and July, showed him losing to former Vice President Joe Biden. But at the moment, the president really is in dire straits. Attorney Richard North Patterson, former chairman of Common Cause and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, doubts that Trump’s reelection campaign will recover — and in a new article for The Bulwark, he explains why he believes that Trump is “cornered” and why his negative poll numbers have “hardened.”
“The electoral dynamics have already hardened,” Patterson writes. “Donald Trump will lose if everyone who wants to vote can. His remaining hope is to choose his own electorate.”
Patterson adds that between coronavirus, race relations and the state of the economy, Trump’s campaign is doomed — and he doesn’t believe that a rally-the-base approach can bring him a victory.
“Amid a deadly and economically ruinous pandemic,” Patterson writes, “[Trump] is driving a strategy aimed only at arousing his base — chiefly by inflaming white racial grievances and cultural resentment. He seeks not to heal the wounds exacerbated by George Floyd’s murder, but to exploit them.”
Trump, according to Patterson, is running a campaign that recalls Richard Nixon in 1968 — which is problematic for him because demographics in the U.S. have changed a lot since then.
“[Trump] converts predominantly peaceful protests into an epidemic of disorder, as if this were America in 1968,” Patterson explains. “But it is not 1968 — or even 2016. Our demographics have changed: the U.S. population was above 83% non-Hispanic white in 1968, compared to 60% today.”
Patterson complains that Trump’s campaign is “politically tone-deaf” and that he is failing to seriously address the issues voters care about the most — including the coronavirus pandemic.
“Trump’s presidency has been swamped by COVID-19 — yet another reason why his race-baiting, a loser in itself, is terminally deficient,” Patterson notes. “The pandemic has become a metaphor for Trump’s suffocating incompetence, mendacity and self-absorption.”
To make matters worse, Patterson adds, Trump is encouraging the U.S. Supreme Court to abolish the Affordable Care Act during the pandemic.
“A glaring example of Trump’s political empathy gap is a crucial issue underscored by the pandemic: health care,” Patterson observes. “Millions of people have lost employer-based health insurance during the pandemic — a number which, the Kaiser Family Foundation estimated in May, could reach 27 million. Trump and his party have no plan to help them. In fact, he has insisted on asking the Supreme Court to invalidate Obamacare, which would strip perhaps 23 million more Americans of their health insurance.”
Patterson concludes his piece by emphasizing that because Trump cannot win on the issues, his only hope is voter suppression.
“He has only one way out: pursuing voter suppression through any stratagem that limits Biden’s vote — like relentlessly exploiting the pandemic,” Patterson asserts. “That’s why he’s crying voter fraud and decrying voting by mail. As he flails in quicksand and self-pity, we can expect him to resort to more desperate measures. Curbing democracy will become what November is about.”
Trump’s latest attack on Joe Biden is stunningly delusional — even for him
Few ever accuse President Donald Trump of subtlety. But in a new speech in Cleveland on Thursday, he let loose with a particularly wild rant against his Democratic opponent, former Vice President Joe Biden, that was over-the-top, even for him.
It’s worth just quoting in full:
He’s following the radical left agenda. Take away your guns. Destroy your Second Amendment. No religion! No anything! Hurt the Bible! Hurt God! He’s against God! He’s against guns! He’s against energy, our kind of energy. Uh, I don’t think he’s going to do too well in Ohio.
Many people pointed out that there’s much more evidence that Biden is a committed Christian than there is for Trump. But almost that seems to miss several key points about how wild this is:
Facebook removes network of fake accounts that posed as Trump supporters
Facebook said Thursday it took down accounts running a deceptive campaign out of Romania pretending to be Americans supporting US President Donald Trump ahead of the coming election.
The leading online social network removed 35 Facebook accounts, three pages, and 88 Instagram accounts as part of an ongoing fight against "coordinated inauthentic behavior," according to security policy head Nathaniel Gleicher.
"The people behind this network used fake accounts to pose as Americans, amplify and comment on their own content, and manage pages including some posing as President Trump fan pages," Gleicher said.
Brace yourself for months of lawlessness — ‘Election Night’ likely will not end until 2021
There’s nothing wrong with treating American politics like a sport as long as everyone involved in the competition is playing the same sport by the same rules. There’s nothing wrong as long as both sides agree the rules are legitimate, both commit to obeying them and both accept the consequences when they break them.
But there is a problem with treating American politics like a sport when one side is playing soccer and the other is playing football while neither can agree to the rules, because one side won’t commit to obeying them. There is something wrong when one side not only refuses to accept the consequences of rule-breaking but sets out to undermine the idea of rules altogether. In that case, treating politics like a sport, as the Washington press corps habitually does, isn’t helpful. It’s harmful. Even dangerous.