It’s On

If anyone had any doubt about it, the events of the week just ended should put them to rest. The 2024 election will be between Joe Biden and Donald Trump and the campaign has commenced.

Trump’s victory over Nikki Haley in New Hampshire’s Republican Primary combined with Joe Biden’s write in (it was weird and there is no need to get into the specifics) victory in the Democratic version has for all intents and purposes solidified the contest.

The stakes are extremely high this time around. To say democracy hangs in the balance is not hyperbole. (And that isn’t the only huge issue!) It is rapidly becoming an “all hands on deck” situation. Ron Klain and John Kerry exiting the administration were not coincidences. In addition to them a lot of less well known but nonetheless hugely talented people are leaving the White House and going over to the campaign. Biden, unlike his immediate predecessor, likes to live within the law and separates the two functions.

This one didn’t get a huge amount of coverage but it will be one of the difference makers should Biden prevail: it was announced that Jon Stewart will be returning to host The Daily Show on Monday nights until the election. Biden needs a sizable turnout among younger voters. There is little danger of that demographic breaking for Trump, but how large the turnout is will be the question. Many younger voters are tuned out from politics and get their political news from sources like The Daily Show and to them Stewart is the man. While this is a good career move for Stewart as well as great for the show’s ratings, I contend this didn’t happen in a political vacuum.

The UAW endorsed Biden last week. I come from a rust belt city and am not exactly a youngster. I remember when union endorsements were almost a passport to victory. I also remember the days when unions supplied most of the “ground troops” for the GOTV effort. Those factors are not as potent as they were in days gone by but they are still very big especially to a Democrat. Albeit somewhat staged, when the UAW was on strike Biden walked the picket line. Trump, in contrast, made an appearance at a non-union plant at the invitation of its anti-union ownership. I’ll let you decide who is pro-labor, (and I didn’t present all the evidence).

The word out of Washington is that a bipartisan collection of Senators is close to an agreement on immigration that would be the most Republican leaning immigration bill in decades. Trump is trying to kill it because he wants immigration to be an issue in the election. (Its fate in the House is another matter but it has to get there first.) This is yet another example of Trump putting his interests ahead of the voters’ and the Republican party’s.

Trump needs the issue to get his largely xenophobic and racist base motivated enough to show up in large numbers. Trump has narrowed, not widened, his appeal thus far in the campaign and therefore turnout among his base is crucial to his chances of success.

I’m an old political junkie and love few things more than a meaningful (and at least somewhat contested) convention. This year’s promise to be little more than coronations/infomercials.

All that said and in full awareness that most Americans aren’t paying much attention yet; it’s on.

This article is the property of and its content may not be used without citing the source. It may not be reproduced without the permission of Larry Marciniak.