WORDS: 1,841 — The atmosphere in the land is indeed growing in an anxiety about the upcoming elections. More and more we see the Trumpian lies being believed by the Republicans… or what’s left of Republicanism. The signs are everywhere, and the media pundits, political strategists, and political insiders are sounding the alarm bell. Is there any hope for the country?
Fellow blog buddy, chuq (Lobotero), over at his In Saner Thought blog, recently made a post, Would A Split Be Good?, where he discusses the idea of a secession being worth considering given there are some signs we are already heading there. He states the divide representation in some public polls, on both sides, suggests a growing public interest in the concept, perhaps if for nothing else than avoiding violence having the suggestion of a civil war. One of the source quotes he cites in his post was the following…
“The divide between Trump and Biden voters is deep, wide, and dangerous. The scope is unprecedented, and it will not be easily fixed,” said UVA Center for Politics Director Larry J. Sabato.
I replied in part to his post…
“I think there is a better focus to be made that this is NOT an issue of “Trump voters and Biden voters”. This national divide is entirely about Trump supporters and anti-Trump supporters. The elections are about Trump vs. Biden. This imaginary talk about secession is all about Trump supporters and anti-Trump.”
I ended that reply with the following..
“The “good” news is that November 2024 is a long way away.. and any number of events can pop to alter the trajectory of that political “asteroid” from hitting us.”
We are seeing most everywhere reporting that Biden isn’t doing so well in the “approval” polls. The media and pundits are also lamenting the fact that Biden is having trouble getting his legislative agenda passed.. those two pricey bills to “build back better” America’s real and extended infrastructure.. past even a split Democratic caucus in the House. Then that “root canal” exit from Afghanistan felt more like a tooth extraction without Novocain. We could argue (and do actually) on the timing, but we ARE out of there finally and the logistical evacuation could have been hugely worse. Biden might have waited a bit for certain domestic priorities to be moderated…. like the pandemic. The occupation itself at the time he took office was not of super urgency to save American lives given the existing combat conditions against our troops had been at a lull for quite some time even with the Taliban taking over the rest of the country. Again, all debatable and my presumptions are entirely “armchair” based. I don’t get a security briefing or a threat level assessment with my breakfast each morning like some people.
Here’s where I am headed with this. The recent polling is showing Biden as declining in favor as a result of all the Democratic infighting on his legislation, Republican obstructionism, the rough departure from Afghanistan, the border “thing” still being a thing, the pandemic still causing sickness and death amidst a political denial of science, a struggling economy trying to recover…. yada, yada. My perception is that Biden has correctly read what the public at-large wanted.. BEFORE… the pandemic. It’s my feeling that the public is really weary of the not-normal world they.. we.. were all thrust into, and when the vaccine started to take hold the public has been strongly pushing the back-to-normal. Then the Delta variant took hold. Back to illness, suffering, dying…. and all of that on the unvaccinated. Trying to get kids back to school safely is in itself a political science-denier nightmare. In the meantime… the economy itself, while re-booting well in general, has a large segment of the population meandering the moral path of career change rather than going back to minimum wage jobs or jobs not being able to support the family. Truck drivers have retired early or left the profession during the Covid year forcing slowdowns in distribution of things we need to buy. In fact, globally distribution is in chaos as ships laden with goods can’t get to port to unload because the dock personnel were reduced during the lockdown time. The point being to all this… the public seems to have less concern over Biden’s agenda bills than the Dem strategists seem to think. In fact, I don’t think Afghanistan is an issue for the general public given that’s a done war.. for now. The public is striving to get back to some “normal” that was before the pandemic started. The economy matters.
Those recent opinion polls showing Biden’s declining popularity in his “job approval” I simply do not see as contributing to the idea that this somehow favors Trump Republicans in a future election… as if this “negative” conjuring of Biden means votes for Trump. I believe these polls are simply reflecting what folks think of Biden’s performance and nothing else. Let’s extend this idea a bit further. These folks may not like Biden but they may very well dislike Trump all the more. Trump lost the last election.. and also the popular vote.. for specific reasons regarding Trump. So, regarding Trump, what’s changed that would turn any of those votes toward Trump? He’s definitely gotten worse with the Jan. 6th/Big Lie, and most definitely, if a voter hated Trump in the last election what’s going to change their minds this time around when the man has gotten worse? Remember… a lot of the Biden win in 2020 was because of dislike for Trump.. and not because Biden was the “big attraction”. For them Biden was a great relief from four years of constant chaos… not a purveyor of a great social agenda. I honestly think we’ve failed to consider that perspective more than we should have. I am suggesting that I think voter defections from Biden in 2020 over Biden policy shortcomings will not be as drastic as we think. Trump has done NOTHING to endear 2020 Biden voters to him. Nothing. Just the usual name calling, political threats to his enemies, expressions of the Big Lie about the PAST election… threats to democracy. No policy statements… no words of encouragement.. the same old Trump. To top that off, his followers mumble things of sheer lunacy.. like civil wars.
Where does that leave us? As I commented earlier in this post, we have a lot of time for outside events and social influences to change things for the better for the Democrats and for Biden even before 2022. But are we simply assuming Biden will run for a second term in 2024? My immediate thought during the 2020 campaign when Biden brought on Harris was that Harris was going to run instead of him in place of a second term. After all, Biden is 78 now. He will be 81 when his term ends. With your mortality staring you in the face why would you want another four years doing this stuff? Better to quality time with family what time you have left. Whether Biden has good or bad poll reporting by the 2024 election… what better candidate to assure a Trump defeat than Harris? Did you just note what I stated there? The goal for the Democrats should not be about a Biden or Harris “win”.. but rather a focus to completely defeat Trump… and absent that, also defeat any Trumpian follower should they run. In that there IS a distinct difference. I am hearing daily the constant warning about Trump winning an election.. the end of democracy as we know it. Then do the next best thing… make sure he’s defeated because we already have a head start with all the voters who didn’t vote for him in the last election, and likely many more. I’m willing to wager my next slot machine payout that right now Trump is in no better position to win a thing in 2024 than he was in 2020.
SIDEBAR TIDBIT – What makes Harris a viable possibility in 2024? Honestly, she amplifies the women vote… and in no way carries the political history (and incendiary dislike) of a Hillary Clinton. Ok.. maybe a couple debatable past cases as an AG.. but in her case, at this point in time, she’s an easy alternative to a 2024 Trump return to the White House… IF the goal is to defeat Trump or one of his minions.
Now.. having stated that Trump is in no better position to win a thing in 2024 than he was in 2020 , there are serious concerns, as I have suggested many times before in other venues, that we will definitely have those red state legislatures trying to deflect, de-certify, accepting votes and doing their own voting if they see their state counts turning away from Trump. That is the real and true threat we have to our democracy. But as Americans we have no choice but to carry the 2024 election to its Constitutional conclusion. What happens after… well…….. pray.
So far Trump has not yet declared he is officially running in 2024. We should hope he does as it will make his defeat much more assured. If someone else runs on the GOP ticket then that changes the election strategy considerably toward more traditional options. Do I actually think Trump will run? If he does it will be for effect only, and he won’t follow it to the end. Why? He truly hates losing to the point he’s got a behavioral dysfunction toward it. This is why there were all these reports leaking from the White House about his temper and rage in losing in 2020. It’s also the entire motivation behind the constant lamenting of the Big Lie. He’s convinced himself he actually won in 2020. His involvement in January 6th was his “not surrendering” to defeat. Normally, when average people exhibit this kind of obsessive denial there might be a family intervention and/or a visit to a therapist. But Trump was the leader of the country for four years and people do listen to what a president says.. and some choose to believe and to follow them. Remember, we have a nation of some 350 million people so it becomes a numbers game on who people choose to follow and for what reasons. I don’t think he will run because he fears the pain of losing. He also has his own age reality. He’s 75 now and would be 78 by 2024… if his Big Macs don’t incapacitate or kill him first.
But let me further echo the words of warning here. Even if Trump is defeated in 2024.. and for that matter if things don’t pan well for the Trumpians in 2022, while that may be generally a welcome outcome, there is a very serious threat from Trump followers in state legislatures to try and de-certify, or not certify the vote counts, then vote in session for Trump replacements. In this case we should expect a non-Trump backlash in spots across the country to react violently. Don’t expect the 2022 or 2024 elections to be a win-win for the country in general.