Donald Trump in 2024? An exchange

Christopher Carr: The Trump-Biden Double Negative

In a previous article I argued that Alvin Bragg’s New York indictment against Donald Trump over payments to “Stormy” Daniels was an integral part of the cunning Democrat plan to rile the Republican base and ensure the nomination of Trump as the GOP candidate in 2024. Thus would ensue a contest which even the senile Joe Biden would win, and the Republicans consigned to minorities in both the Senate and the House of Representatives. The New York indictment was largely frivolous, but it served its political purpose.

Now further indictments have piled up against Trump and his associates, making him the overwhelming favourite among Republican voters, just as the Democrats hoped. Former GOP Senator Alan Simpson referred to Republicans as “the stupid party”, and the Democrats as “the evil party”. Historically, Democrats were associated with the big city machines, smoke-filled rooms and the powers of political manipulation.

Unlike many Quadrant readers, I am no fan of Trump and his brand of neo-isolationism. It is true that the Trump Administration could rightly boast of some real achievements. We can point to the appointment of conservative justices to the Supreme Court, the recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and moving the US embassy from Tel Aviv, the Abraham Accords, a serious drive towards energy independence, increased spending on the military, tax cuts and other positive economic measures.

The Trump administration was buttressed by among others, Mike Pence, Vice-President; Mike Pompeo, Secretary of State; Secretaries of Defence, James Mattis and then, Mark Esper; Nikki Haley, Ambassador to the United Nations and Bill Barr, Attorney-General. As one might say, the Trump administration was successful in many ways despite Donald Trump. During my travels overseas, I repeatedly found how much so many middle-class Americans disliked Trump. His antics provoked shame and embarrassment. Moreover, no previous president has ever faced such a wholesale repudiation by former members of his administration.

However appalling I find Trump’s behavior, the criminalization of politics is both shocking and deeply cynical. The polls point to a contest between two deeply flawed characters whom a clear majority do not want. Joe Biden’s candidacy remains viable only to the extent that Trump is disliked even more. The great irony is that Trump is the only candidate Biden could defeat. Yet on the flipside, Biden is the only Democrat, bar Kamala Harris, who would never be in the race, whom Trump could conceivably defeat. A recent poll showed Biden at 46% and Trump at 47 per cent, well within the margin of error. What is so striking about the poll figures is the prominence of the double negative.

This all raises a tantalizing possibility. Back on July 14, 2023, in The Washington Post, George F Will wrote that neither Trump nor Ron DeSantis would win the Republican nomination. His focus was on both their personal and policy defects, especially in relation to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. As a Reagan conservative in the context of American politics, I am deeply concerned by the ignorant isolationism of both Trump and DeSantis. Through my Lithuanian-born wife, I have close links with that part of the world, and I can attest that the prospect of a Trump or DeSantis presidency is viewed with alarm.

Yet I believe Will’s prediction may be right, but not for the reasons he argues, however much I agree with his arguments. I see the real factor as the future of Joe Biden. DeSantis, like Trump, only holds a narrow lead over Joe Biden. As more evidence emerges of Joe “The Big Guy” Biden’s links with his crooked son, Hunter Biden, and the clan’s influence-peddling and money-laundering, the Democrats may be forced to confront a grim reality. Despite the cover-up by a largely Democrat-supporting media, the faint possibility that even a convicted Trump could defeat a senile Biden, weighed down by scandal will concentrate the minds of hard professionals in the Democrat establishment. I could see it coming, the tap on the shoulder, especially as more evidence emerges of how deeply Joe Biden is enmeshed in Hunter Biden’s financial transactions.

The possibility is that Trump could be facing not Biden but a popular and younger Democrat state governor, such as Gavin Newsom of California or Jay Pritzker of Illinois. Thereafter, panicked Republicans, facing lopsided polls, might do the unthinkable but rational: consign Trump to history and say, nominate Glenn Youngkin, Governor of Virginia for President and Nikki Haley. Thus may they snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.

Roger Franklin: Voting for Trump — and Poetic Justice

WHILE we’ve never met, Donald Trump and I go back quite a ways. I was “the slot”, as Americans call their chief subs, at the New York Post when news broke of the future president reaching an amicable divorce with second wife Marla Maples. As the Post had announced the couple’s nuptials several years earlier with the front-page, 120-point quote “Best Sex I Ever Had”, it was a no-brainer to present their split beneath “Best Ex I Ever Had” in an even larger font. Trump appreciated my wordplay so much, I was told, he had the front page framed. While never confirmed, it would have been entirely in keeping with the celebrity builder and TV host for whom the Big Apple was but stage and backdrop for an ego so much larger than any of his apartment towers.

Trump was a showman, a scamp and, quite frankly, a bit of a joke loved only by headline writers. The sole indication he might have some potential as an architect and implementer of public policy came when City Hall called his bluff on the boast that he could get the long-stalled construction of Central Park’s ice-skating rink finished “in months”. Placed in charge of the project he did exactly as promised, much to the bureaucrats’ astonishment. Getting any public project done in New York City is always an achievement, what with the corruption and kickbacks, bent unions and City Hall potentates who are so often thieves, indolent or both, but the rink was thin gruel to support the presidential bid announced at the foot of Trump Tower’s golden escalator. Trump was, all those assembled agreed, a goose and this was another of his publicity stunts.

So it came as quite a surprise that he did so well in the White House, as my friend Chris Carr notes above, not least because the former Washington rule book had been tossed in the Potomac. The Russia! Russia! Russia! hoax, the endless accusations, the vexatious lawsuits, the Deep State surveillance, the impeachments, Silicon Valley’s social media censorship plus Big Media’s misrepresentations and flat-out lies, well  it’s a wonder he got anything done at all. But he did, and for that he has been neither forgiven nor spared the further harassment of serial prosecutions specifically timed to take him out of 2024’s race or leave him convicted and unelectable.

The latest innovative lawfare is an effort to have him scratched from ballots come next November by the imaginative invoking of the Fourteenth Amendment. This is a measure dating to the years immediately after the Civil War and precludes anyone who has engaged in “insurrection” — ie., Johnny Rebs et al — from running for office. Apparently, if you are to take the word of Harvard legal scholar and Trump hater Laurence Tribe, the events of January 6, 2021, on Capitol Hill are right up there with Gettysburg, Antietam and Vicksburg. Funny thing, though, Tribe has never had a problem with the thousands of aggrieved women who invaded the same Capitol to protest Brett Kavanaugh’s appointment to the Supreme Court. Consistency is one of the many things banished from sight when the world is viewed through the distorting lens of Trump Derangement Syndrome.

In a perfect world, I’d prefer Florida’s DeSantis in the Oval Office. Like Trump, he’s no windvane but a fighter, and his gubernatorial performance atop the Sunshine State has been a huge vote-winner, as his landslide victory at last year’s election established.

Thing is, though, Trump has been more sinned against than sinning — and, far worse than that, so too has America’s systems of both justice and governance.To support anyone but Trump is to endorse the damage his detractors and enemies are doing to the very fabric of their country on a daily basis. Just when you think the Soros-backed district attorneys have done their worst, they prove you wrong by pushing America ever closer to the brink of civil war.

Make no mistake, that’s not hyperbole. Despite their trigger-happy reputation, owed largely to suicide-by-gun and gangbangers performing public service homicides on each other, Americans are slow to anger. Get into Flyover Country and they are mostly polite and churchgoing as well. But the anger is there, building not so much in sympathy with Trump but in appalled reaction to the abuse of cherished institutions.

For America’s sake and that of justice itself, those who have gamed the courts and prosecutors’ offices need their ears pinned back  As Trump is the aggrieved party, simple justice demands that he be on all states’ ballots and, even more, that he wins. Nothing less will suffice if America is ever to regain its composure.

Roger Franklin lived and worked in the US from 1980 until 2007 and remains — Chinese viruses not withstanding — a frequent visitor. He will be spending much of 2024 on the road in the US, filing on the election and other matters for Quadrant Online. 

11 thoughts on “Donald Trump in 2024? An exchange

  • leabrae says:

    Banana republic. Who cares?

  • lbloveday says:

    Trouble with this link? Former GOP Senator Alan Simpson referred to Republicans as “the stupid party”, and the Democrats as “the evil party”.

  • Rebekah Meredith says:

    September 14, 2023
    Very brave, Mr. Carr, to risk the ire of those suffering with reverse TDS (that is, Trump can do no wrong). Thank you. I, too, have concerns about the country of my birth being led by Trump or the isolationist DeSantis (though I would FAR prefer the latter). I would love to see a better man in the White House; but, somewhat along the lines of what Mr. Franklin said, I have the strong suspicion that Mr. Trump should have been the president for the last two-and-a-half years. If so, then it seems as though he deserves a second term. Nevertheless, I couldn’t in good conscience vote for him in the primary.

  • Stephen Due says:

    What Biden’s presidency proves is that the POTUS is just a figurehead. This must be the case since the present incumbent is obviously senile. It also proves that being a thoroughly corrupt individual with the personality of two-bit gangster is no obstacle to obtaining the office. In fact it seems to help.
    In addition we know that the US is actually run by the Deep State. US foreign policy is run by the CIA. We know this because President Kennedy was assassinated shortly after saying that he would dismember the CIA limb from limb – and the world’s most powerful intelligence agency was mysteriously unable to find a plausible culprit or motive.
    As a potential candidate Trump has the advantage, like Kennedy, of being interested in dismantling the Deep State, and eliminating the influence of the military-industrial complex that wants America to be constantly at war in other countries. Unlike Biden, Trump is honest, and mentally competent. Trump wants America to be Great Again – a vision that certainly appeals to many voters. His main failing in office was not realising that he was surrounded by officials who were liars, manipulators and back-stabbers. He should be wiser next time, in theory. But when the election comes around Trump will not win. And that will be because the next election, like the last one, will certainly be rigged against him.

  • taylor1956 says:

    The whole issue is more prosaic than this overheated analysis argues. The logic behind this analysis is that of the serial burglar who complains about being harassed by the police. Trump is one of those very wealthy entitled men, like Jeffrey Epstein, who act as though they are above the law. Finally, he is getting his come-uppance and there is some logic to the observation that the only reason Trump ran a second time was to escape legal jeopardy. May he see the inside of a cell soon.

  • Botswana O'Hooligan says:

    Bottom line question was the USA and the World in general better off under the Trump Presidency or under the present one? No one seemed to like Trump from way back and probably with good reason but the Presidency of the USA isn’t a beauty pageant contest.

    • BalancedObservation says:

      Botswana O’Hooligan
      Excellent comment. What you said should of course be pretty obvious but so many get mired in the demonizing of Donald Trump to miss the obvious.
      So many are gullible victims of the unrelenting and astoundingly long demonizing campaign against Trump.

  • BalancedObservation says:

    Something which many commentators on the left and the right refuse to concede is that the Democrats have done a pretty effective job of demonising Donald Trump.
    I’d argue – given his demonstrably far better performance in government than President Biden – without that effective hit job he’d have a far greater lead in polls related to the primaries even than his current unassailable lead.
    He’d also be well ahead of President Biden in polls rather than neck and neck with him. I think unlike many commentators all the actions against Trump have not been a net benefit to him so far. They’ve helped demonize him.
    But I think that will change when the actual presidential campaign gets into full swing and Donald Trump has a vastly enhanced platform to expose the enormity of the incredible and unprecedented government funded campaign waged against him. When he starts listing all the government funded actions waged against him, the resources used, the huge number of government funded lawyers and the gigantic cost of it all, the penny is going to drop with voters.
    Of course commentators would have us believe that Trump has actually demonized himself.
    It’s understandable Democrats would believe that but testament to the effectiveness of the long running smear campaign that not a small number of conservative commentators also believe it. Or want to believe it because they don’t like Donald Trump personally or don’t like his successful challenge to the political establishment which they’re also part of.
    It’s understandable that the Democrats campaign to demonize Trump has been so effective. It ought to have been! It’s been such a very long and costly process using immense resources stretching right back to when Donald Trump first ran for president in 2016. It’s been continuous and unrelenting since then.
    Of course there were the usual dirt files that both major parties use. But with Trump the political dirt file and the political operative who authored it became part of a government funded investigation. That’s very nice work when you can get your political opponents like that. But it’s more like what happens in banana republics rather than respected functioning democracies.
    There’s been an astounding and unprecedented avalanche of government investigations, prosecutions and actions against Donald Trump stretching across the country. When they’re all listed in one spot there will even be Democrat voters who change their vote for Trump to save their democracy.
    Even, dare I say it, more commentators like the author of this article who’s already indicated he now prefers a Trump win because of his concerns for America’s democracy. Of course on policy and performance in office Trump wins hands down over Biden.

  • BalancedObservation says:

    I think there’s also an element of virtual signalling which has crept into discussions on Donald Trump.
    I’ve noticed friends like to say how they don’t like Trump like people might say they’re now eating less meat to save the planet ( presumably from farm animals breaking wind).
    And it’s a such a versatile form of virtual signalling which can be acceptably embraced by the right and the left. Commentators on the right can also use it as a way of virtue signalling their “balance”.
    I find it quite amusing but it’s also I think quite real and helps confirm the point I’ve made on how effectively Donald Trump has been demonised by the Democrats.

  • BalancedObservation says:

    “Virtual” should read of course “virtue”.

  • pmprociv says:

    My mind still boggles at the irrational, sycophantic support expressed for Trump in these pages, and I’ve given up even thinking of responding to specific comments. Sure, Biden has serious issues, and one would hope that such a large, prosperous and richly-endowed-with-talent nation as the USA could come up with a far better choice for its leaders (same could be said for Oz), but Trump is a walking disaster, an intellectual and ethical basket-case. This just turned up in The Atlantic, sadly paywalled, but well worth reading, revealing the highest-level US military’s take on the man:

    They’re possibly in the best position to view the world from a realistic perspective, and are definitely not renowned for their bleeding-heart leftism . . .

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