Patterico's Pontifications

3/5/2021

Wall Street Journal Turns on Trump

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:29 am



Better late than never, I guess.

What really seems to rankle the most famous resident of Mar-a-Lago isn’t his caricature of our policy differences. It’s that we recognize the reality that Mr. Trump is the main reason Republicans lost two Georgia Senate races in January and thus the Senate majority. Mr. Trump refuses to take responsibility for those defeats, contrary to all evidence.

Mr. Trump’s statement blames the Georgia losses on GOP Gov. Brian Kemp and Senate GOP leader Mitch McConnell. His rap on Mr. Kemp is that he didn’t fight hard enough to overturn the President’s loss of the state in November, a claim Mr. Trump turned into his main campaign theme before the Georgia Senate elections on Jan. 5.

All the polling showed that the best argument for electing the two Republicans was as a check and balance against an all-Democratic government. But rather than make that point to voters, Mr. Trump focused on his grievances against Mr. Kemp and his claims that the election was stolen. Mr. Trump told Republican voters that their November votes had been meaningless, so it’s hardly a surprise their turnout fell in January. As the FiveThirtyEight website found, “The better Trump did in a county in November, the more its turnout tended to drop in the runoffs” in January.

It’s not about principle. It’s about winning. And Trump not only lost, but caused other Republicans to lose. That is the cardinal sin.

We rehearse all this because it matters to GOP fortunes going forward. In the single Trump term, Republicans lost the House, White House and finally the Senate. How can it be that everyone other than the most prominent Republican in the country is responsible for victories but not the defeats that have left Republicans in the wilderness?

Losing to Joe Biden of all people, and by 7.1 million votes as an incumbent President, must be painful. Counseling could be in order. Any good analyst will explain that the first step toward recovery is to accept reality. The same applies to Republican voters who want to win back Congress in 2022 and the White House in 2024.

That’s as close as they will get to un-endorsing him for 2024. But like all the other toadies, if he wins the nomination, they’ll come around.

34 Responses to “Wall Street Journal Turns on Trump”

  1. The Wall Street Journal does not endorse presidential candidates.

    Charles Davis (15121e)

  2. It was important for the WSJ to counter Trump’s lies.
    Along similar lines, the DOJ just arrested a Trump appointee for his participation as a domestic terrorist on 1/6.

    Paul Montagu (77c694)

  3. The WSJ best start reading… the NYT:

    ‘Under Georgia law, candidates must receive a majority of the vote to win an election. If no candidate breaks 50 percent, the top two vote-getters then face off again in a runoff election to determine the winner.

    Georgia’s runoff law was created in the 1960s as a way to preserve white political power in a majority-white state and diminish the influence of Black politicians who could more easily win in a multicandidate race with a plurality of the vote, according to an Interior Department report.

    Since the 1990s, Democrats have won only one of seven statewide runoffs in general or special elections, according to Inside Elections, the nonpartisan political newsletter.’ -source,

    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/07/us/politics/georgia-senate-runoff-explainer.html

    The GOP lost the Georgia senate seats because of… Georgians.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  4. DCSCA:

    Google “1966 Georgia Governor’s Election”.

    Appalled (ebd051)

  5. I am surprised that the WSJ referenced the 7.1 million popular vote difference between Trump and Biden. I am to understand that as a matter of conservative political orthodoxy the popular vote is meaningless, in fact mythical, and in any case irrelevant to electing leaders to this country. The only relevant consideration is the 45,000 vote (more or less) difference that almost reelected Trump. The fact that a clear majority of the country that voted didn’t want him to be president should not be an issue. We are, after all, an oligarchal republic, not a democratic republic.

    Victor (4959fb)

  6. Victor, I thought it was about 240,000?

    Time123 (441f53)

  7. Drip, drip, drip ….

    nk (1d9030)

  8. Time123,

    I am resisting the temptation to actually figure out the exact number, but my understanding is that changing the votes in three states, Arizona, Georgia and (Wisconsin? Michigan?) would have resulted in a 269-269 tie which would have probably led to a Trump victory in the House of Representatives, given the rules for such contests. And that it was about 45,000 votes in those three states that made the difference.

    I think the 240,000 number may include Pennsylvania, which would have led to a clear Trump victory. But the actual margin of victory was less than 50,000, even less than the margin in 2016.

    As I am sure my heavy use of sarcasm implies, I think that this fact is pretty much a flat condemnation of the current American method of electing its president.

    Victor (4959fb)

  9. Donald Trump is no longer President of the United States. At what point will he stop living, rent free, in your heads?

    The Dana in Kentucky (0562ec)

  10. Dana: at the point where there stops being a serious risk that he will be President of the United States on January 21, 2025, and at the point where he stops undermining the legitimacy of the republic by running around *lying* about the 2020 election, and whipping up anger among his supporters by so doing.

    What happened in the time between the election and the inauguration was an existential threat to the Republic. That threat has receded temporarily but it has not gone away. Ignoring that threat is the best way to ensure that it manifests.

    aphrael (4c4719)

  11. This was a response to a Trump Twitter like attack on the Wall Street Journal on Thursday.

    Sammy Finkelman (1df645)

  12. “Republicans may complain, but they’re still in thrall
    To a President who acted like a Neanderthal

    Instead of coming together, the flames they fan
    When they should be working with Joe on the Rescue Plan

    Cry, whine, and gnash their teeth as they may
    It’s actually the Republicans who are in disarray!”

    -Anonymous

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  13. If it came down to Trump or Harris and I live in a battleground state, call me a toady if you want, I’m gonna vote for Trump. Get me a hat that says “I’m a toady” and I’ll wear it and send you a picture for your desk

    steveg (43b7a5)

  14. A vote for Trump and his hand-maidens is a vote for election fraud, sedition and fascism.

    Dave (1bb933)

  15. The last straw (before the other last straw) was his turning the GA Senate election into a farce. Instead 0f 52-48 and Kamala Harris home checking the obits for Biden’s name, they’ve given Harris a platform and tempted the Democrats with nuking the filibuster.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  16. A vote for Trump and his hand-maidens is a vote for election fraud, sedition and fascism.

    A vote for Harris and her commissars is a vote for election fraud, sedition and communism.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  17. Not that you’re wrong.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  18. 9.Donald Trump is no longer President of the United States. At what point will he stop living, rent free, in your heads?

    When the star of The Joe Show starts getting entertaining.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  19. My good friend aphrael wrote:

    Dana: at the point where there stops being a serious risk that he will be President of the United States on January 21, 2025, and at the point where he stops undermining the legitimacy of the republic by running around *lying* about the 2020 election, and whipping up anger among his supporters by so doing.

    If there is a chance that Mr Trump becomes President on January 20, 2025, then it will be because he ran for election and was voted into office. If that happens, would that not be democracy?

    What happened in the time between the election and the inauguration was an existential threat to the Republic.

    800 unarmed demonstrators — I’m sure that you’ve heard the reports that not a single gun was confiscated from any of them — storming the Capitol was an “existential threat”? Adolf Hitler managed to put together 2,000 armed Nazis for the Beer Hall Putsch, and that is considered a laughable attempt, so laughable that he was sentenced to only five years and spent only 13 months in prison for it.

    The Dana in Kentucky (0562ec)

  20. 800 unarmed demonstrators — I’m sure that you’ve heard the reports that not a single gun was confiscated from any of them — storming the Capitol was an “existential threat”?

    But Trump was a much better organizer than Adolph.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  21. Victor, I thought it was about 240,000?

    The votes in Michigan never mattered.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  22. It was less than 45,000 votes in WI, GA & AZ. Biden won PA by 90,000, but those other states lost would have made it tied.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  23. The point about the popular vote is that when you lose the popular vote by several percent AND the electoral vote by a bigger margin, trying to claim you were robbed gets you no violins.

    The vote was not all that different than 2016, except the popular vote margin was doubled and the edge in a few state went the other way. If it was “fraud” it was a real double-secret fraud that looked almost exactly like last time.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  24. Detrumpification. Hopefully, it won’t need to go on for six years like in Dana in Kentucky’s preferred frame of reference. I’m sticking to my prediction of less than a year.

    nk (1d9030)

  25. 800 unarmed demonstrators — I’m sure that you’ve heard the reports that not a single gun was confiscated from any of them — storming the Capitol was an “existential threat”?

    Remind me, how many people were arrested at/in the capital, oh, it was 14? I mean, that discounts the actual bombs, and the armed guy in the pickup, and the felon tuffboi loaded with pmags. But aside from that. Oh, well, except for Christopher Alberts, just him…and the other ones. No one else, for sure.

    I’m sure they are all children of George Soros or something.

    Colonel Klink (Ret) (1367c0)

  26. 800 unarmed demonstrators — I’m sure that you’ve heard the reports that not a single gun was confiscated from any of them — storming the Capitol was an “existential threat”?

    The larger threat is the Big Lie that the election was stolen, with the resultant undermining of the faith in our electoral system. Trump’s claims on this point are precisely why the Republicans lost the two Senate seats from Georgia.

    You’re starting to sound like the black knight in The Holy Grail. “It’s merely a flesh wound.”

    norcal (01e272)

  27. I’d be good with Trump doing x<5 years. Good point, Dana in Kentucky.

    Leviticus (e55b21)

  28. The Biden proposal at the border actually sounds like a good idea. This is work and costs the local agencies are already incurring. The issue driven by national policy so they don’t really have the ability to “fix” it themselves. But due to where they’re located they have to deal with it. Seems fair that the burden should be born by the nation and not the locals.

    Time123 (dadf7e)

  29. 28. And to the extent that Biden is pushing for testing and/or vaccination of the immigrants it makes even more sense. If Texas really wants to open up completely it needs to have a good idea of where there may be groups with infections.

    Victor (4959fb)

  30. I don’t think it requires a “toadie” to recognize that Trump’s policies were vastly better than Biden’s are, or to recognize that the characterization of Trump as a Russian agent or a white supremacy were BS from day one. I’d vote for sore loser Trump over Biden any time, though I hope the GOP would prefer to nominate someone younger and more appealing to a broader spectrum of voter.

    Andrew (77ec06)

  31. supremacist

    Andrew (77ec06)

  32. the characterization of Trump as a Russian agent or a white supremacy were BS from day one

    You’re right on those counts, AND Trump was horrible.

    norcal (01e272)

  33. The claim is that Trump is a Russian asset, not an agent. A pliable fool, willing to cater to Russian interests, and leveraged by his desire to build in Moscow and, possibly, because of negative information Russia has about him. That’s the claim. And guess what. Trump did have a building project in Moscow that he concealed, while running for President.

    As for white supremacy – I won’t bore you with the long list of Trump actions and words that support that claim. I just note that they began early. His association with Roy Cohn began in the 70’s when Roy helped him fight off prosecution for housing discrimination in the buildings his father owned.

    Victor (4959fb)

  34. Apparently, some people are still pushing the Russian asset garbage. In a 2007 court deposition, he said “Russia is one of the hottest places in the world for investment….We will be in Moscow at some point….” He unveiled four ultimately unsuccessful plans to have a building in Moscow with his name on it, all before he ever ran for president. Apparently, after the hacking of DNC emails, whatever negotiations that had continued were stopped. Thereafter, Trump emphasized that he had no investments in Russia, and I’ve seen no evidence to the contrary. No Trump building ever got built in Moscow, and his efforts to do it were perfectly legal as far as I know. There’s no evidence that he gave Moscow any favorable treatment as president, in return for a building project, and of course the best evidence is that he never got the building project.

    As for the court case filed by DOJ in 1973, everyone’s entitled to a lawyer, even if it’s Roy Cohn. In 1973, Trump was still in his 20s, and had taken over the family business; the company defended business practices that his father had put in place. The agreement with DOJ included no admission of wrongdoing. The company had a policy of turning away renters who did not hold steady jobs, and black unemployment was a lot higher than white unemployment. I don’t think that made Trump a white supremacist in 1973, much less 2021.

    The usual caveats apply: Trump may well be a Russian asset and white supremacist, and an agent of Satan too, but people who say so have failed to prove it.

    Andrew (080048)


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