Almost the entire issue of the January/February 2022 issue of the Atlantic Magazine is devoted to anti-Donald Trump trash talk. Consider the titles of several articles:
- Imagine The Worst: how to head off the next insurrection
- January 6 Was Practice
- The Small Lie: to support the Republican myth that our elections are rife with fraud, someone needs to take the fall
- I Remember Conservatism: the rich philosophical tradition I fell in love with has been reduced to Fox News and voter suppression
Yes, American democracy had a stress test after the 2020 elections, but it survived brilliantly. The Trump organization filed over 60 lawsuits to overturn election results and not a single one was upheld. The January 6 Capitol break-in, even though wrongly encouraged by Trump, had no prospect of overturning the results of the 2020 election.
A quick review of Trump’s four years in office:
- 2017 tax reform lowering the corporate tax rate from 35% to 21%.
- Putting three highly qualified conservative justices on the Supreme Court.
- Achieving an unemployment rate of 3.5% for the six months preceding the pandemic
- After the outbreak of Covid-19 in late February 2020, supporting American drug companies in developing effective vaccines at “warp speed”
Compare this record with Joe Biden’s first year in office:
- A disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan, leaving over 60,000 U.S. allies at the tender mercies of the Taliban.
- Our open southern border. Illegal immigrants, with temporary asylum permits, are now pouring into the U.S.
- Inflation. Because of blowout Congressional spending as well as supply chain bottlenecks caused by millions of absent workers, inflation has now reached an annual rate of 6.8% in November. Low-income workers are getting hefty pay raises but they are more than eaten away by inflation.
If Trump is a candidate for reelection in 2024, he will surely receive the Republican nomination. Will he be a viable candidate for reelection? His poor performance on January 6 is a negative factor. But Biden’s very poor performance to date, if it doesn’t improve, will give Trump a big boost. In other words, the outcome of the 2024 presidential election will depend on what happens politically and economically in the U.S. between now and then, not on bogus claims of voter suppression.
Conclusion. The progressive left should calm down and take more interest in the substance of the Biden presidency rather than Donald Trump’s shenanigans. This is what will influence the outcome of the 2024 presidential elections.
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It is my considered opinion that the January 6 confrontation at the Capitol was a “one-off” mass expression by the common man and woman who were still reeling from the previous year’s attempts to cope with COVID that included lock-downs and shut-ins, loss of employment, and mask mandates.
To some extent, also, the confrontation was a response to the leftists’ own reaction to Floyd George’s death that had resulted in “defund” the police efforts, disrespect of law enforcement, riots and looting along with property destruction in the name of equality (with little push back from responsible politicans).
And on top of these challenges to the body public there were the obvious attempts to influence the November election through the actions of governors, state legislators and state judges that allowed/caused callous abuse of not only voter registration methods but also the primary voting system. And in some areas, those abuses carried into the general election.
Whatever influence President Trump may have had over those who spontaneously scaled the steps of their Capitol building, an honest psychological study of the confrontation would reflect it was largely generated by frustration over the events of 2020 that resulted in placing in office a man of dubious governing ability and a lack of forthright character.
I agree with you that, while there was little if any outright voter fraud in 2020, there certainly were a number of voting irregularities around the country.