originally published on Facebook 8/28/2020
The race is on – can Trump win? Maybe, but I’m very doubtful…
With the conventions over, we now have a better view of how the race is going to run and won. What will determine the outcome? Let’s look…
Last night, CNN’s Jim Acosta reported that a senior White House official told him that the administration was going to go for a herd immunity approach to the virus. Let it rip through the population and get everyone infected to achieve immunity. Sweden has been held up as the model for this approach, but they suffered massive death and just as much economic hardship. That doesn’t seem sensible to me. Plus, the NYT has shown through their polling research that in any given district, as the corona virus cases and deaths increased, Trump’s approval decreased, a direct relationship measured in real time. If they adopt this, there’ll be lots of dissent, and it’ll be a disaster. Just imagine the news stories about the children who die from it after a big push towards herd immunity.
The Economy and the Stock Market
Trump is famous for following the stock market and hailing it as the economy. The general economy sucks right now, so he has to push the performance of the stock market, which is spectacular right now. However, October is the traditional month for economic crashes, and Warren Buffet’s crash indicator is blinking red.
The teenaged vigilante is being hailed by the right wing. But, as I suspected, he has a past that is troubled and possibly criminal. By raising him up as a good guy, while simultaneously putting down Jacob Blake for the exact same kind of past, they will only amplify the issue of race in this country. White Americans are majority in favor of the BLM movement and of working towards racial justice, a new phenomenon in America. How can the majority support racial justice, but support the teenaged mutant ninja vigilante at the same time?
Protests, Riots, and Crime
This is the weak spot. Trump sees it, the right wing sees it. If they can make this the narrative, they have a chance. Consider the following:
— The protests have a majority support, peaceful protest is as American as apple pie. The racial injustice they highlight is something the country wants to address, the numbers in the crowds plainly show that.
— Nobody likes riots. Are they the work of Antifa or the 3% white supremacists? They have to convince people that right wing agitators don’t exist, but they do. This is going to depend upon how much each group gets tagged with the violence. Right now, there is more credible evidence that right wing agitators are responsible. Will that change?
— Crime is at a generational low in this country, even with the recent uptick, it is still less than half of what it was in the mid 1990’s. People in cities are safer than they were then. So, he needs to make it look much worse than it is. But, who is the president right now? That becomes a sticky question, as Trump famously takes no responsibility for anything, but how can the president not be responsible to some degree? Especially if he keeps pushing how bad it is. I’m not sure how a sitting president can make the country look like it is suffering a crime wave and argue to be reelected.
It looks like Trump is going to run a law and order campaign, much like his hero Nixon did in 1968 and 1972, it is his only real option. But, I suspect that is not going to have the same effect. The electorate of 2020 is not the same as it was in either of those races and I think this is a mistake for him to go that direction without tying in police reforms and racial justice. I’m working on a piece about that, look for it soon.
For Trump to win, a few things will have to happen- the virus will have to magically go away so that death and sickness go down, the stock market doesn’t crash, the economy stops bleeding jobs, there will have to be incontestable evidence that the left wing agitators are a greater threat than right wing agitators, and he has to somehow convince people that a crime wave has taken over the country for which he bears no responsibility. These things could all happen, but I have my doubts.