(Jan. 19) Donald Trump has been a disaster for conservatives, for Republicans, and for the country. Even if his replacement is far from ideal, the United States will benefit from Trump’s exit from the White House.

Trump has been a disaster politically. He has been problematic on policy. And he has been worse than disastrous for the culture.

Politically, Trump is a big loser. At the beginning of 2015, Republicans had majorities in both the House and the Senate. The House majority was protected by favorable gerrymandering. The Senate majority was bolstered by the fact that, in terms of population, it over-Hilaryrepresents rural states that trend conservative.

Meanwhile, the expected, and eventual, Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, was arguably the most emotionally unattractive major-party nominee in our lifetimes. Almost any decent Republican candidate with skilled campaign strategists could have rebuilt the Reagan coalition of blue-collar workers and suburban professionals in order to keep her from the Oval Office. Perhaps 11 or 12 of the 17 candidates for the Republican presidential nomination could have defeated her, a few of them rather easily.

Now, after a full cycle of House, Senate, and presidential elections, Republicans have lost all three. Sure, Trump energized white workers and slightly improved the GOP percentage of the nonwhite vote, but he turned off suburbanites and professionals in droves and hyperenergized millions and millions against him. The arithmetic was awful.

Consider black voters. Yes, Trump improved from 10% to 13% of the black vote between 2016 and 2020. But the raw number of black voters increased from shy of 14 million to more than 20 million. In very rough figures, that means the margin of Trump’s loss among blacks increased from about 11 million to about 15 million. That’s four million extra votes for Democrats — votes of people who weren’t accustomed to voting before now but who now have cast their lots, and their rooting interests, against Republicans….

[The full column is here.]


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