Who Needs to Be President to Dominate the US Political Debate?
No rejoicing for the Democrats: Even after a sound defeat, Donald Trump will not go away. In fact, he will immediately launch his 2024 campaign.
October 29, 2020
One of the biggest misconceptions about the 2020 election concerns what even a sound electoral defeat of Donald Trump means.
How will Trump unleash his post-election venom?
To date, the U.S. and the global debate have focused on the issue of post-elections riots by frustrated MAGA true believers and gun-toting hot heads.
While such a deplorable, civil war-like turn of events cannot be ruled out, the extent to which it will really manifest itself is unclear.
What is crystal-clear, however, is that any hope that Mr. Trump will recede into the background and focus on his family business and fending off various lawsuits and tax charges is wishful thinking.
Trump’s biggest asset
Trump’s dominance of the airways and of Twitter feeds will not end with his defeat. This will not just be due to choices made by Trump himself.
For the media and many politicos, daily battles with Trump have become a phenomenon of true mega codependence. To a considerable extent, the news media have become one gigantic uninterrupted reality show.
Never one to worry about precedent and decorum
Unlike any other former U.S. president, Donald Trump will also not follow the example of former presidents and leave his successor with a lengthy grace period of respectful silence.
Barack Obama did not explicitly speak out against Trump during the first three years of his presidency, in spite of Trump’s obsession with erasing any legacy, large of small, of the Obama presidency – a special insult to the United States’ first African American president.
In January 2008, George W. Bush handed over the Oval Office to President Obama wishing him well. In fact, throughout Obama’s presidency the two first couples became quite close, too close for the comfort of many liberals.
Trump will not follow these and many other examples of good governance.
After all, why start now, when the President has broken nearly all the china there was in the cabinet of prudent government during his years in office? Trump instead will be on a near-constant tirade eager to insult his successor.
Eyeing the 2024 rematch
One can almost rest assured that Trump is eyeing a rematch against Joe Biden in 2024, if for no other reason than to settle scores.
From Trump’s perspective, that is not just a matter of personal peeve and venom. Trump can rely on an admiring base. The next time around, it could make him the top contender against other Republican job applicants.
Start hitting back on January 20, 2020
It would be a real surprise if Donald Trump weren’t starting his 2024 campaign by live tweeting the Biden Inauguration on January 20, 2020.
To that end, Trump will generate new conspiracy theories and incessantly seek to ridicule the Biden Administration’s policies.
Now, there are news reports that the Trump administration has officially given up combating the coronavirus.
It is not a stretch of imagination to argue that, in this manner, he is doing his utmost to load up the challenges for the upcoming Biden administration even more and to subsequently blame Biden for the entire catastrophe.
Trump’s language will drip with vitriol, unlike any words he has so far uttered. Hard to imagine though this may be, Trump will feel near mortally wounded by his defeat and will take his anger to an entirely new level.
Back to “You’re Fired,” but every day
Perhaps most importantly, Trump will continue his con game, which basically consists of the presumable billionaire protecting the impoverished masses.
According to that script, Trump will play to the rightful fears of Americans in the lower income brackets who are gravely concerned about their future economic prospects (and for whom Trump — as President — notably did nothing).
The Murdoch-Trump alliance of ol’ male witches
No question, Trump’s contract with Fox News will be huge. Monetarily, it will be Trump’s largest licensing deal ever.
Rupert Murdoch will seek to ride on ex-presidential coattails from now on, even if Trump might have to spend much of it on his legal defense. (Unless, of course, he runs the table by somehow getting himself pardoned by the Justice Department preemptively).
Firing Biden, every day
Trump will thus be as omnipresent in American life as he is today. He will simply go back to his reality TV days and make it a daily show to fire Joe Biden and various administration officials every day, not just once, but many, many times.
One would think the media (other than Fox) would not give him a soap box on which to stand and from which to shout. Sadly, his ratings will “force” them to play his game. All of them. I’m looking at you kid, CNN.
The battle for the soul of the Republican Party?
There have long been hopes that, once Trump is defeated and moves out of the White House, the Republican Party will re-discover its once very sensible core.
Those hopes may very well prove elusive. After all, the Republican Party has long become the party of the ultra-rich and religious right.
It has degenerated into a spineless, truth, honesty and science-defying party that stands for nothing else but the stock market and televangelists.
Republicans showed this pure obstructionism, devoid of any considerations for sensible policymaking or the nation as a whole, during the Obama presidency.
Egged on by a very angry Donald Trump, who will be in a continuously bad mood, Republicans in Washington will double down on making it virtually impossible for the American people to find normalcy.
Hard to dissent
His megaphone on Fox and his Twitter will force the hand of Republicans. Even after his defeat, they will fear his rage that might replace them in Republican primaries with even more pliable Trumpistas.
As a result of all of Trump’s shenanigans, the Republican Party will become even more tied to him — and, in the process, even more white, male and old.
Feeble and hyper-pliable politicians, Republican officials know their fortunes depend on Trump’s authoritarian charisma. They have made their choice — tolerating their Duce.
The scenario laid out above also explains why Donald Trump has not answered the question whether he will turn over power to Joe Biden if he loses on November 3rd.
Formally, he will. But informally, he will “govern” by establishing himself as shadow president for four more years, a period that one day might become remembered as America’s Interregnum.
Then, he or his destructive daughter, Ivanka, or the empty suit that represents his son, Donald Jr., will go for making a family comeback.
Either way, a new American Dynasty was born. Their credo will be the same as Argentina’s Evita Peron’s once was: “I will return and I will be a million.”
One of the most vexing issues following the 2020 US presidential election is what even a sound defeat of Trump means.
Any hope that Trump will recede into the background and focus on his family business and fend off various lawsuits and tax charges is wishful thinking.
Trump’s dominance of the airwaves and of Twitter feeds will not end with his defeat. Not only will Trump not go away, but count on him to immediately launch his 2024 campaign.
To start his 2024 campaign, one can easily imagine Trump live tweeting the Biden inauguration with a barrage of negative comments.
Rupert Murdoch will make Trump rich by paying him for a daily reality TV show in which Trump will make it a daily habit to fire Joe Biden.