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Is there Impending Doom for Trump?

Don Rose 13 December 2018 One Comment

Day by day the news gets worse and worse for the Orange Menace and day by day more Democrats come to the fore hoping to replace him in 2020–presuming he isn’t ousted though impeachment or quits to keep his kids out of the slammer.

   What looks like 20 or more senators, present or past congresspersons, governors, mayors and dog-catchers are “talking it over with friends and family”–announcing without actually declaring.


There are almost as many theories about what it takes to beat Trump as there are candidates. Among the most popular are (a) a super-progressive, identitarian who can expand the base into flyover country, (b) a moderate who can fool enough red-staters into thinking he/she is really a Republican, or (c) a charismatic, rising-out-of-nowhere flash who becomes this year’s Obama.

   On serious, pragmatic note, it has to be an authentic somebody with solid progressive credentials who can recapture the Midwest’s former Obama voters who flipped to Trump–and carry at least two of the Holy Trinity of presidential states, Pennsylvania, Florida and Ohio.  (Obama carried all three twice; Hillary lost them.)

   As it happens, I have been touting such a person for some time now and just found agreement, quite independently, from the astute progressive political analyst Michael Tomasky–editor of Democracy: A Journal of Ideas, NYTimes essayist and occasional MSNBC commentator–writing in the December 20 New York Review of Books. (We’re friends, but hadn’t discussed this issue.)

  Okay–our candidate is Sherrod Brown, just elected to his third term as senator from Ohio. . He carried by 6.4 percent while the Democratic gubernatorial candidate lost by 4.3 points. One of the senate’s most progressive Democrats–one of the few who voted against the Iraq War–wins Ohio three times.

   His secret is the ability to talk to workers black and white about the value of work and get into rural areas with issues important to them–without pandering to either group. His raspy voice and somewhat rumpled look also help give him the authenticity that so many found appealing in Bernie Sanders.

   None of the diverse progressive coastal candidates–Sanders, Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker, Eric Swalwell , Kamala Harris etc.–have never been tested in red states. Recent Democratic presidents–Obama, Clinton, Carter–came from the Midwest or South.

    The only other prospect who meets most qualifications is Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar–the perfect running-mate for Brown.  If  I could be convinced that a woman stands an equal chance of winning, I could flip the positions of that ticket.

    For those expand-the-base advocates I remind you that while heroic efforts were made in the Florida and Georgia gubernatorials, the candidates narrowly lost–as did the charismatic Beto O’Rourke in Texas.

    Caution–Maybe Brown doesn’t prove to be a forceful campaigner. Otherwise, consider Tomasky’s summary:

    “If we accept that the 2016 election was lost chiefly because of the Obama-to-Trump voters in the Great Lakes States, then Brown is obviously the choice. Trying to help those workers has been his central project for a quarter-century. He knows how to talk to them.”


Don Rose is a regular columnist for the Chicago Daily Observer

One Comment »

  • Marty McFly said:

    A future Don Rose column (January 18, 2025) will confidently predict the end of the Trump presidency due to the imminent release of the full Mueller Report before the inauguration of Mike Pence.

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