Trump’s Legacy: The Worst Angels of Our Nature
Not since 1861, when Allan Pinkerton smuggled a disguised Abraham Lincoln into Washington under military guard, has a president-elect faced such full-on toxic partisan hatred as Hillary Rodham Clinton.
And no, we haven’t lost track of time. Despite our addled mental and physical conditions, we realize it’s still Election Day.
The day after the primary, however, Calbuzz set forth the case for why Clinton would win; despite all the pointless babble blathered ever since by Chris Matthews, Chris Cillizza and Chris Wallace about every hourly event, we’ve seen nothing that has changed the fundamentals of our argument:
But as it stands today, all the agonizing, brooding and bed-wetting about a potential triumph by the racist, demagogic misogynist among right-thinking people everywhere is gratuitous, for three key reasons:
–The MSM is waking up…
-He truly is nuts…
And if we’re wrong about what happens today, we’ll publish a Calbuzz Founders selfie wearing Dodger hats. (Our confidence is based on our own aggregation of the poll aggregations.)
|Real Clear Politics||47.2||44.3||2.9||8.5|
|Five Thirty Eight||45.5||41.9||3.6||12.6|
|Huff Post Pollster||46.1||41.5||4.6||12.4|
|Talking Points Memo||48.9||44.0||4.9||7.1|
So: congratulations Hillary, just a mere 96 years after the franchise was extended to the other half of the population, you’re about to become the first woman elected president of the United States. Good luck with that honeymoon.
How the campaign went down: After two years and $3.2 billion in spending, here’s what the election boiled down to: Republican psychopath Donald Trump called her, with moderate cause, a corrupt, war-mongering, weak-kneed insider while she painted him, with ample justification, as an unstable demagogue filled with hateful, narcissistic prejudice.
He scoffed at her “Stronger Together” slogan, arguing “We’re Stronger With Me Alone.” She said his “Make America Great Again” needed the add-on “for Rich White Guys” like his revolting pals Rudy Giuliani, Newt Gingrich and Chris Christie.
Every school child knows the political axiom that change beats the status quo. Except this time, when change came wrapped in a lying orange tub full of crazy.
From the kickoff through the fourth quarter of the campaign, the Calbuzz analysis held: that Latinos and women would be the key to Trump’s downfall, and when the final numbers emerge we’re confident this will be obvious. Final polls showed women voting for Clinton by at least 10 percentage points and Latinos – the fastest growing demographic in the population — by nearly 60 points.
Trump’s version of change, of course, equated to attacks on women and Latinos, not to mention blacks, Muslims, the disabled (and, most important, the truth); thus the rationale for his candidacy was doomed. Even a gutless, profit-chasing news media and a partisan, fifth-column secret police can’t fully compensate when change takes the form of overweening self-regard and smug ignorance in a vicious bully.
He told so many lies with such reckless abandon that the news media could never catch up to yesterday’s before they had to expound on today’s. And thus we saw the normalization of mendacity and the death of truth. What was once regarded as nutball insanity has become normalized by the MSM.
When we look back, this may turn out to have been Trump’s most destructive impact.
The most recent tear at our civic fabric during the campaign was the political weaponization of the FBI by Director James Comey whose rogue agents have done everything they could conjure to undermine Clinton’s campaign, including goosing the director to violate FBI protocols in ways we haven’t seen since the bad old days of J. Edgar Hoover.
Yet Donald Trump, the deplorable New York real estate hustler, will emerge today as a huuuge loser. And the term of Hillary Clinton, who has been the object of attack for 30 years and whose minor transgressions have been exploded into phony “scandals,” will become the subject of endless investigations and ultra-partisan obstructionism.
What Hillary faces: Shortly before his inauguration in 1861, Lincoln made an iconic, heartfelt plea to the Southern states for unity:
“We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies … The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battlefield, and patriot grave, to every living heart and hearthstone, all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.”
We’re not suggesting that Clinton is Lincoln material, only that she faces a Lincoln-grade national partisan divide similarly based on rabid right-wing emotions and notions. And we give her credit for trying to appeal to our better natures even before her election becomes official, as she did on Sunday while campaigning in Cleveland:
“It’s not good for anybody that our democracy and our country are viewed so suspiciously, without confidence. That is how we govern ourselves, so we have to work together.”
“I am taking very seriously the obligation I feel to reach out to all Americans,” she said. “I have never felt more strongly about what we can do together. I am confident, I am optimistic about the future we can make together.
Nice try, Hillary.
What Trump has wrought: The filth that the Republican candidate spewed from his mouth, day after day for 18 months – about minorities, Muslims, women, physically handicapped people, POWs and our political system itself – has enabled and empowered millions of lurking racist and misogynist xenophobes to say and act on a brand of polluted political views that it took the country more than a century to — apparently — move beyond.
He’s made it acceptable to claim President Obama is an African-born sleeper terrorist, to portray the First Lady as an ape, to refer to Clinton as “a bitch,” to wink and smirk about the wish for her to be assassinated, to portray “the blacks” as a criminal class hunkered down in “inner cities,” “the Mexicans” as raping and thieving murderers, women as little more than pleasure slaves, to be judged and used according to the appearance and appeal of their faces, breasts and legs.
He has, in short, destroyed whatever small store of civility, decency and good will towards others still existed in the open sewer of partisanship that is Washington D.C.
And even the cowardly, mouth breathing Establishment Republicans who constantly wavered in whether to support Trump and his rag-tag Tea Party legions – most notably, Utah’s repulsive Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R,-emails and the repugnant Speaker Paul Ryan – already have declared their intention not to accept the legitimacy of the choice made by American voters, but rather to thwart her by any means, just as they did Obama, including, according to the threat of one GOP dim bulb, the start of impeachment proceedings the day she takes office.
As a practical matter: Clinton’s attempt to govern will be hampered by the most significant demon Trump has unleashed: the normalization of hyper-partisan demagoguery that sees all compromise as capitulation and would rather smash the system than allow it to function.
At stake? A working Supreme Court, expanded health care, international security, nuclear non-proliferation, climate change, world peace. Little stuff like that.
That Trump was “uniquely unqualified” to be president, as President Obama says, barely begins to sum up the damage his candidacy has done — and will do – to the fortunes of the United States of America.
God bless us, every one.
If AP’s read just before 10PM in Calif. is correct, there’s no way to stop it. Trump is the next President. I need a drink.