Mangoface clearly thinks sending armed anonymous federal agents dressed in military camouflage into America’s streets to beat up, snatch up, and generally fuck up American citizens exercising their Constitutional rights will help him win re-election. (It also feeds his sadism, his narcissism, his feelings of power, but mainly it’s about the election.) Like almost everything else he does, it’s not going according to plan.
Trump’s reaction to the protests was not the only reason for his summer collapse. Most pollsters say that Trump’s continuing inability to respond to the coronavirus pandemic, and the economic havoc that’s come with it, has been the dominant factor. And last week, for the first time, polls began to show Biden beating Trump on the question of who would best handle the economy, the only decent card left in Trump’s deck. But if Trump loses in November, the nationwide protests against racism and police brutality that erupted in early June have to be seen as a significant breaking point. [emphasis added]
Trump fundamentally misunderstood the country’s reaction to the Black Lives Matter protests because, as usual, he projected his own feelings onto everyone else:
[N]ew polling and research provided to Vanity Fair suggests that the protests themselves changed America’s opinions about race so quickly, and so profoundly, that Trump unknowingly planted himself even further on the wrong side of public opinion than previously understood.
The polls are from early June and measure the change between June 1 and 11:
Avalanche found widespread support for the protests by June 11, with 68% of respondents saying the protesters were “completely right” or “somewhat right.” But rather than measuring responses by self-identified partisanship—Democrat, Republican, independent—Avalanche measured by vote choice. It organized respondents into five segments: Vote Trump, Lean Trump, Mixed Feelings, Lean Biden, and Vote Biden.
Avalanche found resounding support for the protests not just among Biden supporters, but among persuadable voters and even soft Trump supporters.
The change of heart among some Trump voters is staggering:
“I had never in my research career seen public opinion shift on the scale in this time frame,” [pollster] Prull said. “When we look at this from electoral context, when you see a 25-point swing in Lean Trump supporters from disapproving of the protests to at least somewhat agreeing with them, that’s just a scale of public opinion shift you don’t see in this line of work very often.”
The article suggests that Lincoln Project, Never Trumpers, Republican Voters Against Trump should really be targeting the Lean Trump and Mixed Feelings voters (as they are!). And the Incompetent Idiot is helping them:
Yet Trump seems to be doing the work on his own in recent days, by dispatching federal troops to cities like Portland, Chicago, and even Albuquerque to tangle with protesters who, for the most part, have been behaving peacefully for more than a month. As with Lafayette Square, Trump is perversely creating mayhem in the name of law and order, clinging to the apple-pie idea that the “silent majority” of 1968 is still hiding out somewhere. The country will “go to hell” if Biden wins, Trump said this week, as if people don’t understand that he’s the one presiding over the chaos. But if Avalanche’s research is correct, the silent majority of 2020 is firmly on the side of Biden when it comes to issues of race and justice, and its members walked out of Trump’s community theater Richard Nixon impression many weeks ago.
Trump is in many ways an ultimate expression of one type of American individualism: He is totally and only for himself and devil take the hindmost. (Shades of Atlas Shrugged.) What is defeating him is the other side of the American spirit — the spirit of community. It’s the spirit that says to wear a mask because it protects others. It’s the spirit that protests racial injustice and police brutality because an attack on one is an attack on all (and because racial discrimination, any discrimination, any hatred, ultimately destroys the community).
The community spirit will defeat Trump. And he will never ever understand why.