The other day, I ran into a guy I hadn't seen in more than a year. He and I used to argue about politics, but then he morphed into this full-blown Trumpthing, so there was nothing left to argue about except sexual predators. My position is that sexual predators, especially those who brag about it (like Trump) are bad. The guy, with his formerly sacred vote and his dumb-ass hat, obviously feels that sexual predation is OK if it gets rich people a tax break.
Anyway, the guy said, "So, are you ready to admit that you were wrong?"
I asked about what and he said, "About Trump. About all that (vitriol) you were spewing during and after the election."
I readily admit that I had been wrong about America. As the campaign chugged along and I slowly and painfully came to the realization that Trump might actually win, I still clung to this abiding faith in the average American. I figured that for whatever reason they had voted for Trump, mostly because doing so would keep THAT WOMAN out of the White House, they would eventually come around to seeing that Trump was beneath the office and that voting for him—even as a temporary "screw you"—was beneath their dignity.
But I was wrong and, to this day, one-third of my fellow Americans shrug at his lying, revel in his bullying, and choose to ignore (or secretly join in) his sexism and racism. If that stuff hasn't changed by now, it's not going to.
He then told me that I had to at least acknowledge that Trump has kept all of his campaign promises. Well, he had me there. That 700-mile border wall is almost complete and Mexico is paying for the entire thing. Plus, he got rid of Obamacare and replaced it with a much better plan that has lowered health-care costs for all Americans.
He then started telling me about Trump's Exoneration Tour. I pointed out that in the speech at that rally, Trump said, "Democrats don't like me because I'm smarter than them. I went to better schools than them."
If he really were intelligent, he would know that proper grammar is "I'm smarter than they," as in "I'm smarter than they (are)." Or, "I went to better schools than they (did.)"
This is what we're up against. Every third person supports this festering turdpile and is never going to change his/her mind. That is why, 572 days away from Election Day 2020, I'm nervous. It's going to take a generation to fix some of the things he has done in his first couple years to our environment, relations with our allies and our economy. If he wins another term, it will take 50 years or more to set things right.
In the afterglow of November's mid-term elections, I felt rather confident that a substantial majority of Americans had figured it out. We elected a representative group, chased a lot of Trump apologists out of office and established a ground game that only promised to get better in 2020. But now I'm not so sure.
I wish we could have run the 2020 election the week after the midterms. We could have run a cardboard cutout of the love child of Don Knotts and Mr. Rogers with the campaign slogan, "I'm not THAT guy!" Not being Donald Trump should be good enough for a landslide so long as the Democrats don't screw things up.
Around Christmas time, Bruce Ash asked me on his radio show whom I would have as the Democratic candidate. Without hesitation, I said that I would have Joe Biden run with two campaign promises. One would be to restore basic decency to the White House and the other would be a promise that he would not, under any circumstances, run for reelection in 2024. I thought it sounded so clever.
Then, a couple weeks back, a rumor was circulating that Biden was going to announce that he was running, that he would only serve for one term, and that his running mate would be Stacy Abrams, the African-American woman who lost a tight, voter-suppressed race for Governor of Georgia last November. When the TV people said it, it didn't sound clever; it sounded cynical.
I'm seriously concerned that we Democrats could blow this thing, like a knucklehead running back spiking the football two yards before he enters the end zone. Do I support Medicare For All? Oh, hell yes, but don't make that a campaign issue because it would be too easy for Trump to attack it using one-syllable words. A Green New Deal? A lot of it (but not all of it) makes sense, but let's win the White House first.
The odds should be pretty high that Donald Trump will lose next year, but it's not a sure thing. What we (and Nate Silver of 538) learned the hard way in 2016 is that, no matter how good your algorithm is, there's no Greek symbol for closet racism that you can plug into an equation.
That one-third is out there, emboldened and happy as hell that Der Trump is running again. Whaddya say the rest of us find a disciplined message, a charismatic messenger and make the next 572 days a living hell for their fearful leader?