This election saw an epic battle between the Democrats and Republicans. Both parties are somewhat in turmoil and the country is fairly evenly divided.
On the Right, we have a President who has managed to alienate some in his Conservative base because of his mercurial and narcissistic personality; and on the Left, we have a President-Elect who seems unlikely to be able to complete his full term and who has called himself a Moderate and also said he will be the most Progressive president ever elected. His Far Left base will want to see some of that Progressivism and when they do, there will be trouble in 2022 because some of his recent supporters will be disillusioned for having trusted him to be a “uniter” and middle-of-the-road politician.
Politics aside, the Boston Globe performed abysmally. They abandoned journalistic neutrality to help elect Biden, and their media allies did their part too. Our paragons of journalistic excellence, led by the New York Times and followed closely by the Washington Post and papers like the Globe, have participated in a meaningful way in this election, turning many independent voters against the president who was called all the names in the book, only a few of which were truly deserved. And then, in the waning hours of the campaign, they and the social media giants prevented their readers from hearing about some of the flaws of Trump’s opponent. If the New York Times can publish allegations from anonymous sources, some of which were mischaracterized or illegally obtained, then the Hunter Biden emails and testimony is at least equally valid.
This use of anonymous sources from within the Trump administration was particularly underhanded. One such source, who actually was labeled “Anonymous,” was not a high-ranking Trump official who had defected, but was a lower-lever staffer who worked under Kirsten Nielsen when she was at the Dept. of Homeland Security. The hidden dissenters were not as the Times described them in their so-called “expose.” Their reporting was thus misleading and purposely so.
The Times’ publication of selections from President Trump’s tax returns was also questionable because the information was clearly obtained illegally. The Times had the right to publish this story but notice how the Democrats used it repeatedly, to falsely claim that because Trump paid “$750” on several returns, that was all he paid in federal income taxes for the entire year. This is obviously an oversimplification of his tax burden, because even wealthy people could have losses that carry-forward and reduce taxes owed during any given year. This is why releasing an incomplete picture is unfair because Trump never got to explain his version, which he would have had the returns been released legally and in full. The Times could not wait to smear President Trump and did their best.
The mainstream media won the battle in the Biden versus Trump election, but they have lost all future credibility from at least half the population who won’t be fooled again. President Trump has exposed the media for extreme bias. Hopefully, our memory will be long enough also not to trust future suppression polls that were reported daily about how Trump was going to lose and bring down the entire Republican Party with him for their blind obedience. Human nature empowers those who think they are in the majority and discourages those who believe they are not.
Assuming President Trump’s attempt to overturn the preliminary results is not successful, he will go down in history as one of our greatest presidents who was blindsided by a pandemic and was unfairly targeted by his opponents for his often reckless messaging, even as his actions once again proved exemplary. On the Coronavirus, Biden’s main line of attack, Trump’s ban on air travel definitely flattened the curve, and his harnessing of industry and government support to accelerate medical supplies, therapeutics, and a vaccine were historic. He has correctly blamed China for its multiple failures in containing the virus, but the Democrats saw a golden opportunity to turn a likely loss for them into a win if they could accuse Trump of causing 200,000 American deaths. For some voters, this false charge along with the vile names the Left repeatedly attached to Trump allowed them to vote for the milquetoast candidate who was not named Trump.
Trump’s rhetoric was the source of his success in 2016 and sowed the seeds of his defeat in 2020. He probably felt that the incendiary comments, the bullying and belittling, the multiple tweets and retweets, were all the reasons he was elected in the first place, and why pivot to a more presidential manner when it was working? And now we have the evidence that his decision to stay “in character” even after being elected was not the right strategy. Giving on-camera interviews and answering dozens of hostile questions from the press every single day allowed Trump to dominate the news like no one ever has, but it also made many people over-stimulated. The press successfully played “gotcha” with Trump and Trump could not resist. He was the most accessible president ever and must have believed that the “fake news” media charges would never stick. Unfortunately, those independent-minded voters who do not follow public policy that closely probably weighed the personality flaws and imprecision and chaos as highly negative and unbecoming of our leader; while Republicans who felt the same way were able to overlook these character flaws for the greater good of excellent policies and results.
As disappointed as I am, there is a silver lining in the election. President Biden and Vice President Harris will be unsuccessful in governing from the center. Mid-term elections in 2022 usually favor the party out of the White House. So long as the Republicans hold the majority in the Senate and prevent the worst-case scenarios of Supreme Court packing, we are likely to have incremental changes for the next two to four years and a centrist Republican should have a great chance of defeating candidate Harris in 2024. The Democrats will not be able to switch horses without destroying their coalition and Harris represents the Far Left philosophy that Biden repeatedly repudiated. Harris will not be able to escape that Socialist label in four years, even if she runs as President if Biden is unable to fulfill his first term.
Democrats also benefited indirectly from the pandemic. Many not-very-serious voters could be encouraged to mail in a ballot weeks in advance. When elections go back to normal, this advantage will be lost and voters will need to be motivated enough to either cast an absentee vote or go to the polls on election day. But some states (mostly on the Left) will see this as a way to increase their turnout and will want it to continue. And if mail-in voting stays with us when the pandemic is over, Republicans will need to duplicate the grass-roots organizations that the Democratic Party has long enjoyed (like unions), perhaps organizing workers at large corporations to vote in advance by mail. And hopefully the election systems will be updated to protect against potential fraud, duplicate ballots, ballots arriving after deadlines, ballot harvesting, etc.
President Trump said during his rallies that the 2020 election was the most important in recent history. That was incorrect. It turns out that 2016 was the most important. The accomplishments of President Trump will go down in history and his fundamental transformation of the Republican Party will make it stronger and more competitive in future elections. He broadened the base to include working-class and minority voters; he put “America First” which was a missing ingredient in the globalization movement; he stopped the economy-wrecking climate-change agenda (and made us energy-independent); he unmasked Iran as the world’s leading sponsor of state terror which could not be allowed to become a nuclear-weapons state; and he confronted China with its truly evil power structure that is clearly intent on overtaking the West and capitalism and destroying individual freedoms wherever it can.
Sometimes, “change agents” do their most good in upending the norms and showing different ways of accomplishing important goals, even if their style is not going to allow them to last long-term. Change agents invite some level of chaos, and with Trump, we had a lot of change and a lot of chaos.
President Trump was not a professional politician. He broke norms constantly, some of them for good reasons, others perhaps not. Citizens like “politicians” because they have developed over time to say nothing and do nothing in order to stay in power. One of Trump’s successful lines during the debate was that he had accomplished more in 47 months than Joe Biden had in 47 years. That was true. But the reason Biden was in office so long was because he was a successful politician. People liked Joe. He was friendly and he said the right things. That earns votes.
President Trump was not just an agitator, however. On at least one issue, he managed to bring the Republican Party together, and that was with his court appointments. Republicans do not believe in “Republican” judges. They want judges who interpret the law and do not seek to create it. They reject “activist” judges who substitute their own, unelected views, for those of the legislature on the state or federal level. President Trump picked highly qualified jurists who see their role this way and not as “queens” or “kings” who would rule over the people and make decisions. If voters do not like a law and want it changed, they must go through, and not around, the democratic process.
So the results of this election are not surprising. Many people simply could not stomach the constant turmoil of the Trump presidency and were looking to return to the normal order of business. The news journalists made their bargain with the devil and have likely destroyed their profession for a short-term gain which will be fleeting. But now, we have a new worldview of economic policy (we don’t have to get used to the new normal of economic malaise and slow growth that President Obama promised us), of foreign policy (a new path to Mideast Peace, with several new deals recently announced), and of trade policy (stop allowing our allies and adversaries to take advantage of us as our jobs and factories are shipped overseas), just to name three. These accomplishments will reverberate for generations to come, making President Trump one of the most consequential and successful presidents in our lifetime.
Allen Nitschelm is publisher of PublicEditorMA.com. He critiques the Boston Globe, mostly focusing on the bias in their news reporting. News articles are graded for bias, and the website has a listing of the average bias ratings for all reporters reviewed. See our website for more information and the four categories of articles we publish.
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