Republicans Win Presidency! Expand House Majority! Regain Senate! Spoiler Alert

Republicans are going to win handily next year.

Among Fox News viewers.

But what about the rest of America?

Can Democrats replace Biden to keep the presidency, retain the Senate, and take back the House?  Ron DeSantis is showing the way. The latest example was in New Hampshire last week where he continued his inexplicable journey to morph into Donald Trump: “We’re going to have all of these deep state people, you know, we are going to start slitting throats on Day 1.”

An inelegant metaphor, or a loose cannon?

Mega-donor Robert Bigelow — who gave $20 million earlier this year to DeSantis’s Super PAC  “Never Back Down” — has suspended support.  Bigelow says “extremism won’t get you elected” and cited Florida’s six week abortion ban.  Voters will celebrate DeSantis if they see him as a reflective man of principle and integrity who will persuade others to his cause and collaborate for the common good. But  if “Never Back Down” instead describes a reflexive man of ideology and intransigence who won’t admit a mistake or compromise, they don’t need a Trump wannabe.

On Friday DeSantis belatedly criticized Trump’s insults and antics, and Trump’s behavior as not the way “the president of a great nation … should be conducting himself …  not a good standard for our children to follow.” DeSantis said voters don’t want Biden but in the end Trump would lose to Biden.

As I’ve pointed out, even many Trump voters are worried that ultimately Trump would lose in a general election, that more-than-subconscious apprehension that constitutes the path for DeSantis or someone else to win the Republican nomination. (READ MORE: There Is No Path for Donald Trump to Become the Republican Nominee)

Yet DeSantis’s sudden awakening to reality may not be plausible. It’s not just his past effusive praise of Trump, featured provocatively in a new Trump ad,  or his current Trump-like campaign. Most of all, it’s national  polls showing Trump competitive with Biden.  There may still be hope for DeSantis if he could finally credibly pivot from his absurd out-Trump Trump mode and instead appeal to independent voters to shift general election polling — to demonstrate he is more likely to defeat Biden. This is, paradoxically, the way to effect primary polling.  “Winner” Gov. DeSantis, who won a landslide reelection last year in Florida, must contrast with three-time loser Trump.

In 2018 President Donald J. Trump could have defied the odds and kept control of the House by a few seats.  Instead, he sabotaged his winning message of peace and prosperity, making the midterm election a referendum on him.  Losing the House meant his impeachment!  In 2020, it was again about him, not policy — and then his defeat.  Trump’s inept reelection campaign along with the clueless Republican National Committee did not encourage early mail voting or ballot harvesting.  If the election were stolen, it was not stuffed ballots or tampered vote counts, but the unconstitutional DOJ/FBI collusion with Big Tech, especially Facebook and Google, to suppress and tilt the news to favor Biden.

Last year Trump was at it again: he favored weak primary candidates who lost in November, assuring Democrats continued Senate control.  Also, Republicans had hyped a super majority in the House, triggering a high Democrat turnout.  Yet Republicans failed  on message — inflation. In lieu, they obsessed about investigations, the prurient interest of Fox News groupies. Republicans won only a narrow majority — nearly impossible for Speaker Kevin McCarthy to lead. (READ MORE: CHAOS! Republicans Control House, Barely, and Trump Is In-and-Out)

Since then, they “investigate” with blatant partisan stridency, no effort to project fairness and thus to win the end-game.  Without strategy or choreography, they announce the conclusion before each investigation starts  No media savvy, they raise expectations but don’t deliver. Their “impeachment inquiry” without credibility further telegraphs that this is all just politics and retribution.

For decades, the pre-senile Joe Biden exploited the tragic death of his first wife by falsely claiming a drunk driver killed her.  Joe Biden is not just a documented life-long serial plagiarist, but an unabashed liar to make himself look good, and even play victim.  Alibis are Biden DNA.  Hunter Biden’s tell-all book pre-empted Hunter’s drug-abusing, sex addict defense: I did bad things in the fog of Ecstasy. Voyeur-like Fox News fell for reality star Hunter. But Republicans could have conceded Hunter is a screw-up, pretended empathy and then focused on Joe.  Instead, they enabled many voters to buy the evolved narrative — a loving father helping a problem kid, as if a middle-aged con man is a teenager gone astray (those terrible delinquents at Burisma!).

In refusing to approve Hunter Biden’s sweetheart plea bargain, Federal Judge Maryellen Noreika acted competently and professionally. That’s why even the biased legacy media reported the deal smells, and now Hunter is on their watch list.  Voters react to favored treatment for Hunter but otherwise don’t care if Hunter is a crook. They do care if Joe is a crook, but so far they perceive politics-as-usual — a partisan vendetta —  far off from their macro-concerns.

The Big Picture

What about the Big Picture?  In the past, the increased cost of living was relentless but subtle:   After a decade or two or a generation, parents  would say to their children, “I remember when the cost of a (hot dog, ice cream cone, movie ticket, etc.) was …”  But Biden handed Republicans the keys to the kingdom when he shocked the economy into CHAOS.  Even former Harvard President and Democrat Larry Summers, an economist who served as President Bill Clinton’s Treasury secretary, predicted Biden would bring about doom and gloom inflation.

Republicans cannot process this political gift, an inflationary psychosis, such that even if inflation lessens, it’s baked in — the anxiety and angst are palpable and needed to have been — and to be — nurtured, with political closure in November 2024. Meanwhile Trump drama distracts from the uncertainty and despair of the inflation monster,  the nostalgia not for a quarter century ago, but for an APB … America-pre-Biden.

We are in uncharted waters.  Black and Latino support for Trump may increase, because they get it — bad cops and a rogue prosecutor. Republican support for Trump grows, but what about his unchecked baggage for November? A Trump candidacy even against Biden remains risky.  Chris Christie will say  a vote for Joe is a vote for Kamala. But Joe won’t run, and Trump surely loses to another Democrat.  Republicans bet all their chips on a Biden candidacy, rather than hedge with a generic attack on his Administration and its apologists, including likely Biden successors.

If non-candidate Biden serves out his term,  the unctuous Gavin Newsom will continue to gush over Kamala, as he has rhapsodized over Joe. Meantime, Newsom has drafted his announcement of candidacy. (Can we we get into Gavin’s laptop?)  If Biden won’t complete his term, Dems move Kamala into Feinstein’s Senate seat or elsewhere and replace the V.P. with an adult.

As for the proposed California Governor Newsom-Florida Governor DeSantis debate this year, Newsom is personable, slick and fast.  If DeSantis is abrasive, rigid, and detached, DeSantis will project anger and extremism, while Woke Newsom will come across as a happy moderate.

Meanwhile, Trump’s legal morass sucks the energy out of the spirited Republican primary. If Trump avoids the first debate, the viewer audience will be less.  But will his ego let him stay away? Besides, without Trump, will one candidate steal the stage?

The absurd indictment sponsored by that hack New York District Attorney Alvin Bragg was a nonstarter, and Trump should score an early win there. On federal matters, Trump deserves rebuke, but not criminal prosecution, yet we have Jack Smith’s multiple indictments for, get this, crimes against democracy. But what threatens democracy more? Trump soliciting alternative electors who then could be challenged? Or government/Big Tech collusion  to censor information, preventing  an informed electorate vital to democracy, manipulating an election, and actually violating the  First Amendment’s guarantee of freedom of speech, assembly, and religion?   Prosecutor Smith claims to defend democracy as he seeks to undermine it!

After former Sen. John Edwards’ failed 2004 presidential run, Smith prosecuted Edwards. The jury failed to convict and the embarrassed Department of Justice dropped the case.  In yet other high profile case, Smith went after Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell, who had to spend $28 million to defend himself. The U.S. Supreme Court unanimously vacated McDonnell’s conviction, rebuking Smith, in its words: “the uncontrolled power of criminal prosecutors is a threat to our separation of powers.”  His false morality a cover, Jack Smith seeks not to stop Trump’s insurrection, but to start his own resurrection, a divided nation be damned.

It Won’t Be Trump vs. Biden

The Republican base is angry about the unprecedented persecution of Trump, the most recent indictment two-and-one-half years after the alleged crimes.  That anger manifests in growing support for Trump.  But in time, that fury may find expression, not in endlessly defending Trump, but in  supporting another Republican, better on offense against the Democrats.  In most so-called “winner take all” primary states, Trump needs a majority, not a plurality. Given Trump’s seemingly infinite capacity for self-destruction, Trump is more likely to top out early, even in Iowa and New Hampshire, than gain further. The Big Secret: other candidates are relatively more anxious for a collapse of DeSantis, not Trump.

Click here to read the full article in the Spectator