Why Democrats Can Still Win In November -- With Biden OR Harris

Why Democrats Can Still Win In November -- With Biden OR Harris

President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on February 3, 2023

Photo by Elizabeth Frantz/REUTERS

I have been reporting on and writing about politics for 55 years, and I have never in all those years seen people so depressed about the state of our union, as they say. The Supreme Court is running wild, a lawless, corrupt gaggle that appears uncontrollable by any democratic institution or moral force. In the face of Joe Biden’s debate performance, Donald Trump appears ascendant. His conviction on 34 felonies not only didn’t hurt him politically, it helped. The polls seem united in putting Trump ahead of Biden by two or four or six points, take your pick. The incredible, insane, anti-democratic and criminal Project 2025 is being treated as a fait accompli.

Democrats are in disarray, but this time it’s worse than usual, and there doesn’t seem to be anyone or any way to unite the party.

The comments posted by readers of my Substack column are depressed, frantic, frustrated, and angry, and they have reason to be. People all over Facebook and even some of my commenters are talking about leaving the United States if Donald Trump wins the presidency in November.

First of all, buck up. I think we can win in November with Joe Biden or Kamala Harris or whoever the so-called Democratic Party establishment decides, in its almighty wisdom, should be our standard bearer after the Democratic Convention in August.

Why do I think that? With the widespread despair that I am seeing in mind, this morning I woke up and went out with our dog, Ruby, and just for the hell of it, I walked down to the end of our street in Milford, PA, to check the Delaware River and found that it hasn’t turned itself around to run upstream.

To believe all the bullshit being cranked out by Donald Trump and the Republican Party, to believe they are all-powerful, to believe a Republican victory in November is inevitable, you’d have to believe that the Delaware River is running backwards. It’s not.

Here’s what I mean: The entire edifice of Donald Trump and his re-made Republican Party is patched together with a thousand tissues of lies. Here’s the thing about lies. They are a sign of weakness. If you truly believe in the rightness of your cause, you don’t have to lie. You can tell people the truth, and because you are right, they’ll get on board.

That’s not what the Republican Party does. They have decided that lying is the only way forward for them, because what they really believe is so unpalatable and wrongheaded, if people knew the truth about Republicans, they wouldn’t win. The issue of abortion is a good example of that. Republicans have been lying about abortion for more than 50 years. When they finally managed to impose their lies with the Dobbs decision by their hand-picked justices on the Supreme Court, people started running from Republicans in droves. Abortion will be on the ballot in November in three states. Previous ballot measures on abortion have turned Republicans upside down and inside out and shown the truth about their lies. It will happen again in November.

Or take Project 2025. Everyone is looking at this laughable “plan” as if it’s an existential threat to our democracy, that if Trump gets into office, and Project 2025 is put in place, the world will stop turning on its axis. Here’s what is wrong with that. Project 2025 is just another Republican Trumpian lie. Trump’s acolytes like Stephen Miller and Steve Bannon talk about it as if Trump will get elected, and operating as a dictator on “day one,” he will issue all these executive orders, and like magic, everything will go as planned.

If somehow Trump were to win, that is not what would happen. Under Project 2025, Trump plans to basically scrap the civil service and fire thousands of civil servants and replace them with Trump loyalists. There is a problem with that plan. Most civil service positions are protected by laws passed by Congress. Any attempt at a wholesale firing of civil servants would be met by a fusillade of lawsuits that would generate a corresponding fusillade of legal “stays,” blocking the execution of the Trump executive order. In a familiar phrase, it ain’t gonna happen in the manner or to the extent Trump and his acolytes think it is.

Project 2025 wants to end birthright citizenship. That would take a constitutional amendment. They want to put a citizenship question on the U.S. Census. The 14th Amendment dictates that the “whole number of persons in each state” must be counted.

I could go on. The problem with lies is that wishing them so does not make them true, and that applies to the lies Trump tells at his rallies, the lies told by his simpering coterie of assholes like Stephen Miller and Kash Patel and the rest of them, and it applies to the lie that is Project 2025. Executive orders don’t make lies come true. Every single executive order Trump plans to issue will face immediate legal challenges. The Supreme Court, in Trump v. United States, did not grant him superpowers if he becomes president. It found him immune from prosecution as an individual for the official actions he might take as president, but his policies are not immune from challenge in the courts.

You can attempt to whitewash history, to whitewash the motives behind your actions, to whitewash the actions themselves. But the problem with whitewash is that it is not paint. It washes off.

Donald Trump is not a superman. His lies prove that he is weak, not strong, or else he wouldn’t have to tell his lies in the first place. If Democrats will get themselves together and unite instead of squabbling over whether Joe Biden said “goodest” or “as good as” in the ABC interview, Trump can be beaten in November.

But if Democrats don’t get it together and Trump wins, it’s not the end of the world. If you are planning on leaving the United States just because Donald Trump is president, you are going to miss out on the wrath of the biggest movement going into battle in the biggest fight in the history of this country.

They are afraid of us, or they wouldn’t be lying and cheating to try to accomplish their goals. They fear our numbers, they fear our moral righteousness, and they fear the power behind both.

Buck up. We live in the best country in the world. We are good people. There are more of us than there are of them. This isn’t over by a longshot. We shall overcome.

Lucian K. Truscott IV, a graduate of West Point, has had a 50-year career as a journalist, novelist, and screenwriter. He has covered Watergate, the Stonewall riots, and wars in Lebanon, Iraq, and Afghanistan. He is also the author of five bestselling novels. You can subscribe to his daily columns at luciantruscott.substack.com and follow him on Twitter @LucianKTruscott and on Facebook at Lucian K. Truscott IV.

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