The way the talking heads on Cable TV tell it the 2020 Presidential Elections are all but over and done with, and we should get ready to do the Joe Biden Coronation. Poll after poll, survey on survey, and analysis upon analysis, point to a potential electoral blow out with Democrats doing what former president Barack Obama called, a "shellacking" of the Republican Party for years - if not decades - to come. Why, these folks are even putting "in play" historically Red States like Texas and Arizona. And all of this may very well come true because politics is a very unpredictable business, and 100 days or less is an eternity in politics. That, my friend, can cut both ways, so, I err on the side of caution and say: Whoa! hold your horses! This 2020 Presidential Elections is not over yet, not by a very long shot.
It is very easy for Democrats to repeat the mistakes of 2016 and I'm already seeing some of the political memes that helped to sink Hillary Clinton and put paid to her campaign seeping through the national political debate. On the progressive Left are the implacable haters of Donald Trump and the Republican Party. So, every opportunity to make the POTUS look distracted, incompetent and inefficient is seized upon as the rationale to kick him out of office. On the Right there are a number of reasons why they see Donald Trump as their champion. One is the condescending attitude and behavior of Trump haters and their hubris and arrogance. They look down with contempt on Trump supporters the same way that Trump supporters look with loathing at the meritocratic democrats and their "big city" attitudes.
So, let me don my Political Strategist hat and unpack and make sense of all this and why I've come to the conclusions in this analysis.
Let's start with the very big political troubles within the Republican Party. Democratic presumed presidential candidate Joe Biden does not need to really campaign. Sure, he needs to energize and mobilize his voters, but he just has to "let Trump be Trump." Moreover, COVID-19 is the thing setting the tone for the 2020 Presidential Campaign since the handling and/or mishandling of the pandemic is the ONLY ISSUE now on the ballot. From this standpoint Donald Trump has a massive political deficit given the fact that international COVID-19 watchdogs have given his administration an "F" for its fumbling, bumbling, incoherent and incompetent response to the pandemic. But putting all this aside, this campaign will boil down to how many Americans died as a result of the Donald Trump Administration's quixotic responses come November - 300,000+ or 500,000. No matter the number, this damning statistic should and will be hung around Trump's neck as a political millstone that drags him down.
However, just getting to November 3 will be not only the most consequential election of the last quarter century, but the process itself is fraught with many unknowns and the possibility for unintended consequences loom large less than 100 days to Election Day. First off, the public alarm bells of a conjectured vote rigging by the president is contributing to muddying the waters since he knows that his followers and Right-Wing conspiratorial consumers will see this as one more attempt by the as yet defined "deep state" to disenfranchise them and steal the elections. To date, there is ABSOLUTELY NO EVIDENCE either historical or otherwise presented by the president and his supporters to substantiate any of these wild claims.
Then there are the unrelenting attacks, again by the president and his supporters, against mail in ballot voting. Funny thing is that this process has long been a part of the American electoral system. Yet, President Trump has seized on this as somehow where non-existent voter fraud will happen. He and his enablers have thrown out the most outlandish claims that ballots will be printed in as yet unnamed "overseas countries," will not reach people in time because of gridlock in the United States Postal Service - the same institution that he and his Administration is now underfunding and wants to kill off - and a host of other wild and crazy claims that are believed by his die-hard supporters and reinforced each day in right-wing echo chambers like Fox 5 News.
In fact, President Trump's conspiracy theories have their origins on the Internet, radio and TV domains of people who make a living on the most outlandish political and social claims, and feed this unsubstantiated Kool Aid to a gullible and impressionable section of the American public. However, the clear and present danger to what's left of "American democracy," is that for the very first time in the country's history a segment of the American people have elected to the highest office in the land an avid consumer and supporter of conspiracy theories and whose political rise was fueled in part by one such conspiracy-tinged-cum-lie that America's first Black president was not born in America and therefore illegitimate. Ironically, today ALL of Trump's actions to obliterate the record of President Obama, and to yell and shout foul at every turn, is to wipe away the looming suspicion and lingering, unsettling negative effects in some quarters that he is not a legitimate president.
All of this is a very dangerous political brew that will be further aggravated by the following:
1. President Trump is stoking his Nixonian "law and order" credentials by deliberately creating events that will allow him to appear tough to his base. We see this in his attempts to use the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) agents as his personal militia in places like Portland and Chicago.
(Note: You can view every article as one long page if you sign up as an Advocate Member, or higher).