TRUMP TO SAVE DEMOCRACY
In the run-up to the presidential elections in 2022 and 2024, the former president is proving to be extremely beneficial in dividing and destroying Republican candidates.
“Former President Donald Trump is the best hope for US democracy in the short term.
Venture capitalist, Hillbilly Elegy author, and Ohio Senate wannabe J.D. Vance illustrated this uncomfortable and unfortunate truth again this week. Back in 2016, Vance, in a rare display of insight, tweeted that Trump was “reprehensible” and promised to vote for Never Trump independent candidate Evan McMullin. Five years later, though, Vance is trying to win a primary dominated by Trump-loving conservatives. So he flip-flopped, deleting the old posts. “I regret being wrong about the guy,” he said, in a full-fledged mea culpa for his apostasy. “I think he [Trump] was a good president.”
In short, Republicans are falling over themselves to lick Trump’s orange appendages.
That isn’t encouraging in and of itself.
Trump continues to falsely assert that the 2020 election was rigged, and the majority of Republicans believe him.
Local election authorities have already tried to establish laws allowing local Republicans more ability to reverse election results as a result of the ex-obsessive president’s delegitimization of democracy.
It’s not difficult to envisage a Trumpist GOP coup attempt similar to the one on January 6th in 2024.
But Trump is different in that he isn’t selectively destructive.
He is attempting to dismantle the barriers that protect democracy from dictatorship.
However, because of his erratic behavior in the political arena, he poses a threat to those who are ostensibly on his side.
Trump’s easiest targets are other Republicans, especially now that he’s no longer president.
And, if we’re lucky, he’ll inflict enough damage on his ostensible supporters in 2022 and 2024 that progressives will be able to shore up democracy before the GOP launches its next assault.
It may seem wildly overoptimistic to hope that Trump will damage Republicans enough to allow Democrats time to rebuild. But this is exactly what happened in Georgia at the beginning of this year.
Rather than promoting Republican Senate candidates, Trump ranted about how he’d been robbed at a rally in Georgia in early January.
As the electorate became more split, Loeffler and Perdue were forced to choose between appeasing Trump to keep his support on board and separating themselves from him in order to fight in a general election.
The disarray was exploited by black Democratic activists, who handed Georgia two Senate victories.
This gave the Senate a 50-50 split, with Vice President Harris casting the deciding vote.
Biden was able to pass the $2 trillion, extremely popular American Rescue Plan. By providing money to fight Covid, and funds to shore up state and local governments, the legislation has helped to stabilize the economy, and gives Democrats at least a fighting chance at retaining control of Congress in 2022.
There are indicators that Trump is planning a repetition of his thumb-fingered, bumble-brained self-injury.
He’s already meddling in the Republican primary process for 2022.
In the Republican caucus, he nominated his former aide Max Miller for an Ohio seat currently held by incumbent Republican Representative Anthony Gonzalez, causing division and recriminations.
In Texas, where extreme Trumpy Republican Allen West has filed a primary challenge to pretty Trumpy Republican incumbent Greg Abbott, or in Pennsylvania, where incumbent Senate Republican Pat Toomey is stepping down, Trump might further complicate the governor’s contest.
And the possibility of another Trump presidential bid in 2024 has already hampered the nomination process for other potential Republican candidates.
Of course, even inadvertently, you can’t trust Trump to defend democracy.
Activists and voters must demand, and Democrats must implement, improvements that will help save our democracy.
Gerrymandering must be eliminated, AVR must be implemented nationwide, a new voting rights act must be passed, DC must be enfranchised, the Supreme Court must be expanded, and so on.
Trump’s incompetence may, ironically, provide us with a little more time to get things done.