Nearly 50 million Americans have already voted. In national polls, Joe Biden is ahead of Donald Trump by around 10 percentage points – and has held such a head start for weeks now. Credible pollsters show Democratic candidate at your fingertips in South Carolina and Kansas. In the unlikely event that the polls underestimate Trump’s support by the same amount as four years ago, Biden would still comfortably win the majority of the Electoral College.
That is, barring a poll error of historic magnitude, Trump must make a comeback in unprecedented proportions in the final weeks of the campaign. To achieve this, the president (probably) needed Joe Biden to implode in the last presidential debate of 2020. So the main reason Trump “lost” Thursday night is because Biden went through the process without forgetting his own name, promising of making his son Hunter the ambassador to China, or ripping up his shirt to reveal a giant tattoo of his hero, Mao Zedong. On the contrary, the former vice president gave an unusually sharp performance, looking and appearing healthier than the slightly hoarse, disconcertingly red man he was standing next to.
But Trump didn’t just lose because Biden neglected to self-destruct. The president also lost due to his own shortcomings. To know:
Donald Trump consumes conservative media like it’s his job. In early September, as he presided over a pandemic and devastating wildfire season, the president told reporters his attorney general was about to prosecute his deep state enemies – and backed up that claim by l ‘attributing to various Fox News programs that had watched the previous 24. hours. “I watched Liz McDonald,” Trump said, “She’s fantastic. I watched Fox Business. I watched Lou Dobbs last night, Sean Hannity last night, Tucker last night, Laura. I watched Fox and his friends in the morning.”
During the 2016 Republican primary, Trump’s media habits helped him establish an intimate connection with the GOP base. The billionaire might have lived in more opulent material conditions than his followers could ever imagine. But unlike every other candidate in this race, he and they both lived in the same alternate universe – one where Barack Obama was a Marxist-Islamist, and marauding gangs of “knockout players” terrorized American cities. .
But in the 2020 general election, Trump must reach out to those who live outside of the Fox News cinematic universe and are unaware of his deep mythology. And the mission he set for himself Thursday night – revamping the 2016 campaign that ended with the introduction of a loosely defined, email-centric corruption scandal – only got him further. far into the weeds of the far-right fever swamp. Hunter Biden‘s “Hell Laptop” has been in the conservative media for weeks now. But unlike 2016, the mainstream press refused to pay attention to the ill-founded right-wing defamation of this year’s Democratic candidate. Partly that’s because Hunter-gate is a thin oatmeal, even for those who are used to consuming Rudy Giuliani’s cooking. Existing reports made it clear that Hunter monetized his father’s name in a shady way. But, as the Wall Street Newspaper reported Thursday evening – in a stunt on his own opinion page – there is no evidence yet that Joe Biden himself committed any acts of corruption.
All of this left Donald Trump – a man little known for the merits of his off-the-cuff remarks – a task akin to describing the fourth season finale of a surreal and largely uninvited TV show to a crowd. people who had never heard of the show.
“You were getting a lot of money from Russia. They were paying you a lot of money, ”Trump told Biden. “But now, with what came out today, it’s even worse. All the e-mails, the e-mails, the horrible e-mails, the kind of money you made… I think you owe the American people an explanation, why did someone just have a press conference not long ago, which was basically supposed to work with you and your family, but what he said was damning.
Biden refused to provide the American people with an explanation of what Trump was talking about.
One of Trump’s few real strengths as a Republican politician has been his nose for the party’s most heinous economic ideas. In 2016, he was keen to disavow the GOP’s orthodoxy on healthcare, public investment in infrastructure and, occasionally, taxes on the rich. But on Thursday night, the president went out of his way to signal his opposition to a $ 15 minimum wage (a idea that two-thirds of voters support), his desire to “End” Obamacare (a policy that only 20 percent of voters support), and his ardent hatred for wind power (a feeling 80 percent of Republicans cannot relate to).
This week, lawyers tasked with reuniting migrant families deliberately dispersed by the Trump administration revealed they could not locate the parents of 545 immigrant children. Confronted with this fact in a public forum, a normal human being – or even a sociopath with a rudimentary understanding of normal human thought patterns – would recognize that a display of sadness (or even outright contrition) would be in order. But such recognition goes beyond Trump. Instead of communicating his grief over an unintended side effect of his efforts to enforce the border – and pledging to do everything in his power to ensure these families are reunited – he said what follows:
I’ll say this, they’ve come down, we’ve brought in reporters and everything: they’re taken care of so well. They are in facilities that were so clean.
Many reporters have transcribed this quote incorrectly, correcting Trump’s odd use of the past tense in that last sentence. But the president said “were”. He did not describe the state of the facilities at the moment, but rather how beautiful they were the day his administration invited journalists to take pictures.
He is possible that there are millions of moderate voters who want to support Donald Trump, but first had to see him demonstrate his opposition to wind power, his commitment to skillfully performing photo ops of migrant children that he has effectively orphaned, and making cryptic references to Hunter Biden’s laptop. But this does not seem very likely.