Neither Trump Nor Biden Can Win
Very few people are excited about a rematch of Joe Biden vs. Donald Trump, but it looks like that is what we may get.
Rematches are actually somewhat
This would be the seventh time it happened. Here are the first six:
- John Adams vs. Thomas Jefferson (1796 and 1800)
- John Quincy Adams vs. Andrew Jackson (1824 and 1828)
- Martin van Buren vs. William Henry Harrison (1836 and 1840)
- Grover Cleveland vs. Benjamin Harrison (1888 and 1892)
- William McKinley vs. William Jennings Bryan (1896 and 1900)
- Dwight Eisenhower vs. Adlai Stevenson (1952 and 1956)
Dan McLaughlin over at National Review has a column arguing that neither of them can win.
It is an interesting take on the race from a conservative viewpoint.
BIDEN CAN'T WIN DUE TO
- Age: Biden's decline has passed the point of no return. He can't speak, campaign, or
debate. The best he can do on his best days is leave people a little less concerned that he is senile.
- Image: Biden's image with the public is now fixed and nothing can change it, even if he
were to reinvent himself. Voters think he is too old and it is only getting worse.
- Power: With the Republicans in charge of the House, Biden can't pull off any more policy
that voters might like. The Republicans are certainly not going to help him. Most of what he can still do would be
stopped by the courts. There aren't even any XOs left that he could do.
- Harris: Biden picked Harris because she is Black and a woman. She is a terrible candidate
but his base would revolt if he dumped her, so he is stuck with her. Republicans can campaign on "she's only a heartbeat
away from the presidency."
TRUMP CAN'T WIN DUE TO
- Age: Trump is no spring chicken either. He's 77 now and looking more tired and less fun
by the day. In 2016, he kept surprising people, and that made him interesting to voters and the media. Now it's all
reruns and far less exciting.
- Opinions of him are fixed: Trump has been the main character in American politics since
2015. Everyone has an opinion of him by now and nobody is going to change his or her opinion. As demonstrated in 2016
and 2020, more people dislike him than like him. Getting indicted three or four times isn't going to win him new
- Ceiling: Trump has a hard ceiling of 47% in national elections. There is nothing he can
do to get above that. Also, in his two previous races, he made a lot of enemies in Arizona, Wisconsin, and Georgia.
Those people are not going to suddenly start loving him.
- Campaign staff: Trump has alienated, burned out, and blacklisted so many people that
putting together an A-list campaign team will be impossible. Those people will not work for him. Neither will the
B-listers. So he is going to have to go with ambitious C-listers and hopeful D-listers.
- The trials: The many legal proceedings and trials in the upcoming year are going to be a
huge drain on his time, energy, and budget. Time he may want to spend holding rallies may have to be spent in
courtrooms. In those courtrooms, there will be a slew of eyewitnesses telling about how they personally saw him commit
crimes. That testimony will dominate the news and blot out everything else. It will be hard for him to be heard above
Of course, if Biden and Trump are the candidates, one of them has to win, despite all his flaws. A recent poll had
them tied at 43% apiece. That means 14% of the electorate is still on the fence. The election will be about turnout and
getting a bigger slice of that 14%. (V)
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