Earlier this week, I argued that it seems pretty clear what the outcome of the 2024 presidential race will probably be: while Biden is not exceptionally popular, he will win by a few points over Donald Trump, because Trump is both highly likely to be the Republican nominee and highly unlikely to convince the swing voters who already rejected him in 2020 (and, in effect, in 2022) to vote for him this time.
Two stories on Friday have emphasized that this take was a wise and righteous one. The first, in Jewish Insider, quotes a number of Republican donors who don’t want Trump to be their party’s nominee. But it only quotes one Republican on the subject of how someone besides Trump might win that nomination instead:
“Based upon my circle of friends and my informal survey,” said Jon Tucker, a GOP activist in Pittsburgh, “there’s just a fervent hope and prayer that, somehow, Trump will get out of the way and allow other candidates to get back in.”
Prayer. We’ve heard that one before! And it doesn’t work, which makes sense. God has made clear, by this point, that He/She is not going to “help us out” with the Trump mess. We got ourselves into it, we get ourselves out of it. Not my problem, says God, turning His/Her attention back to the NBA playoffs.
The second story is about someone who seems likely to have a lot of thoughts about “Jewish insiders,” if you get our drift: Micki Larson-Olson, a convicted Jan. 6 participant who Trump met (and hugged) at a diner in Manchester, New Hampshire, after he held a rally there Thursday. (Larson-Olson was convicted of resisting police efforts to clear the grounds of the Capitol.) “Hang in there,” the former president told her while signing her backpack and posing for a picture with her. “You’ve been through too much. You’re going to wind up being happy,” he said, perhaps alluding to his plans to pardon convicted Capitol rioters if he becomes president again.
NBC’s Vaughn Hillyard had previously spoken to Larson-Olson and noted on Twitter that she has some interesting views. Among them:
• Members of Congress who voted to certify the 2020 election (more than 300 of them) should be executed as traitors by military tribunals.
• Trump is the “real president.”
• “Joe Biden” is actually someone wearing a mask (or multiple people—in one version of this theory, more than one actor portrays Biden, and one of them is Jim Carrey).
• The United States has been under “admiralty law” since 1871 (this is also a known thing in far-right circles, and it is based in part on some United States flags having gold-tasseled fringes).
So, yeah. This is not the kind of stuff that the independent suburban voter likes to see.