I’m Offended

I’m not one who minds his own business very well. I’m a cisgender male yet the attacks on women bother me deeply. I’m heterosexual but ditto for attacks on the LGBTQ+ community. I’m white but have a huge problem with racial discrimination and exploitation. I was born in Buffalo, New York and by virtue of the 14th Amendment am an American citizen yet I abhor the attacks on those who are here without benefits of birth or naturalized citizenship. (To be frank, much of the current GOP base doesn’t consider naturalized citizens to be citizens – unless they are related to Donald Trump by marriage that is.) I could go on but you get the idea and it sets the stage for today’s posting.

The current GOP – and it runs way deeper than just the influence of Donald Trump – needs the racist, xenophobic, misogynist and homophobic parts of their base in order to win elections. Today I’m going to concentrate on that segment’s biggest part: the anti-Black racists.

Donald Trump launched his sneaker line earlier this month. The shoes are gaudy! (I may be being kind in my choice of verbiage.) I’m far from a fashion person but I would have to be faced with a choice of wearing those sneakers or going shoeless and then I’m still not sure which option I would choose. (I’d probably check the weather and terrain first.) Trump has said that Blacks will love his sneakers and therefore vote for him. Unless his business acumen is even lower than I think it is, he has to know that will not be the case. But the line played well with Bubba who he desperately needs to keep donating, buying his stuff and voting for him. I contend that Bubba, not the Black community, was his true target. It is not a matter of selling sneakers to Blacks or winning their support at the ballot box. It is a strategy aimed at keeping Bubba motivated.

The proof of Trump’s very limited electoral power is evident if you look at recent history. A Trump endorsement is very valuable in a Republican primary where the pool of voters is limited. In general elections Trump endorsed candidates have a losing record by a wide margin. Trump himself is 0 for 2 in the popular vote and his losses were by wide margins. I’ll make a prediction here: 2024 will see a similar result in the national popular vote for president. In fact, I think Trump may well lose the popular vote by over 10 million this time around. As to the electoral vote, I’m not prepared to make a prediction, yet anyway.

I see 2024 -like most close elections – turning on voter turnout which is largely influenced by motivation. It has long been one of my pet political theories that Americans tend to vote against, not for candidates. An angry voter is a motivated voter and motivated voters tend to show up at the polls. I see a potential problem for Joe Biden in Michigan – one of the handful of battleground states – with Arab-American voters. It is highly questionable if Biden can win Michigan without a large Arab-American turnout. Biden winning in the Electoral College minus Michigan’s 16 electoral votes is certainly not impossible, but it will be very difficult. Similarly, Biden needs Black turnout in most of the other battleground states. Trump certainly isn’t winning Black votes with his sneakers. Biden will win 90+% of the Black vote. I just hope that the “sneaker strategy” will increase the Black turnout enough to offset the racist turnout.

This is the modern-day Republicans’ version of Ronald Reagan’s welfare queen. It played well with the racists who tend to vote Republican. You don’t have to be a racist to vote Republican but if you are you will feel at home. I find this strategy – and that is exactly what it is – offensive and I’m non-Black.

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