The moral imperative remains, to remove Trump no matter who the Democratic candidate might be. Regardless of one’s moral compunctions, the deadly prospect of continuing the Trump regime cannot justify defecting to anything other than its defeat. The greatest indicators are the malign forces meant to disrupt the 2020 election in ways beyond those deployed in 2016.
Several months ago, Michael Sean Winters, who “covers the nexus of religion and politics” for the National Catholic Reporter, wrote of “the seven deadly sins of Donald Trump.” One after another, the author ticks them off—greed, lust, gluttony, sloth, envy, wrath, and pride—and comments, “What we see with President Donald Trump and his cast of sycophants and co-conspirators . . . is a rare thing: All seven deadly sins on display at once.”
More recently Michael Gerson wrote the essay “Trump’s politicization of the National Prayer Breakfast is unholy and immoral.” Trump used“a prayer meeting to attack and defame his enemies,” and “again displayed a remarkable ability to corrupt, distort and discredit every institution he touches,” Gerson observed. Now, after the Senate impeachment trial, Trump “is seized by rage and resentment,” and “feels unchecked and uncheckable.” Gerson also warned that Trump has “tremendous power,” and “we are reaching a very dangerous moment in our national life.”
About a week before Gerson’s article appeared, The Atlantic ran Peter Wehner’s much longer essay,“There Is No Christian Case for Trump.” Much of it deals with the impeachment charges against Trump and his wrongdoing regarding Ukraine, but Wehner also quotes favorably a December editorial by Mark Gali in “the evangelical world’s flagship publication, Christianity Today”: “[Trump] has dumbed down the idea of morality in his administration. He has hired and fired a number of people who are now convicted criminals. He himself has admitted to immoral actions in business and his relationship with women, about which he remains proud. His Twitter feed alone—with its habitual string of mischaracterizations, lies, and slanders—is a near perfect example of a human being who is morally lost and confused.”
One person’s opinion about the current state of the General Election.
1. Everybody has already made up their mind about Trump — and his numbers stink
Right now, Trump’s net approval rating is minus 8.5 percentage points in the RealClear Politics polling average. Fivethirtyeight.com says it’s minus 10, as 53% disapprove, 43% approve and 4% won’t say. That spread was first “achieved” in March 2017. Trump hasn’t narrowed it below nine since, Fivethirtyeight says.
In other words, no one’s changing their minds about Trump. About 40% of us like his act, if only to “own the libs.” Everyone else? Nope.
2. His state numbers are just as bad
Oh, but the Electoral College! says Twitter, where confident young people educate me about their hero’s resilience in Midwestern battlegrounds where he snatched victory from popular-vote defeat in 2016. Thanks for that. Really.
Like, in Michigan, where Morning Consult puts Trump’s net approval at minus 12? Trump’s Michigan numbers haven’t been green in 26 months. Morning Consult says he’s doing two points worse than in October, before Republicans lost two House seats there and the governorship.
Trump’s polling in Wisconsin? He’s minus 13. In Iowa, minus 12, and his party lost two of its three House seats.
In Pennsylvania, birthplace of former Vice President and possible 2020 rival Joe Biden, Trump is minus 7, a point worse than last fall. Democrats won the generic House vote in Pennsylvania by 10 points.
Just on those four, Trump’s 306 2016 electoral votes fall to 254 (270 needed to win) and it’s over. But as many as 215 Trump electoral votes could be in play, based on state-by-state polls.
Yes, early polling isn’t great on head-to-head matchups. But the relationship between late-first-term presidential approval and re-election prospects is pretty close — if it changes, an intervening recession, war or economic boom explains why. This brings us to….
3. Trump isn’t getting credit for the economy — and he won’t, either
4. He’ll keep screwing up
5. Hillary’s not running — neither is Hunter Biden
— Rep. Eric Swalwell (@RepSwalwell) February 17, 2020
— McSpockyÃ¢ÂÂ¢ Ã°ÂÂÂ½Ã°ÂÂÂÃ°ÂÂÂ #VoteBlue2020 (@mcspocky) February 17, 2020
— Walter Shaub (@waltshaub) February 17, 2020
— Mia Farrow (@MiaFarrow) February 18, 2020
— Noah Shachtman (@NoahShachtman) February 18, 2020
— Jennifer Jacobs (@JenniferJJacobs) February 18, 2020
— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) February 18, 2020