Numerous polls released on Thursday and Friday showed the shaky position of the Democrat Party going into the November elections. The overturning Roe v. Wade did not bring about a dramatic rebound, but the status quo seems to have been maintained, with Republicans still holding a slight lead in the generic ballots of each of the three previous surveys.
Biden’s approval numbers for Democrats are worse, with the president falling below 30% in key states such as Nevada. A second-year president who is down in the dumps has been a major drag on the party’s party for the first midterm. There’s no reason to believe that things will improve this time around.
With all that said, there is a new “hope” and “coping”: Donald Trump will declare a run for the 2024 election and sink Republicans in 2022.
Midterms are generally referenda on the president; that’s why Democrats are on track to have a bad time.
If Trump jumps in and becomes the dominant story, the midterms could become a proxy for Biden vs. Trump. That’s not a great shift for the GOP. https://t.co/K48VqwHCGK
— Jacob Rubashkin (@JacobRubashkin) July 2, 2022
There are many things to doubt about here, starting with Maggie Haberman’s report and ending with the implications of that report even if true.
There is little to no reason to believe Trump will declare before the midterms. Many believe that Trump will declare in order to pressure the DOJ to drop a possible criminal conviction. If Trump is officially running for the presidency in 2024, then he could point to his political views and say “This is all politics.”
However, I find it a bit too clever by half. Trump’s political complaint isn’t going to stop the DOJ from continuing its pursuit of justice. Any prosecution that relies on the thinly defended arguments of the January 6th committee will face a large-scale backlash. He is also an expert in marketing and knows that it is best to keep the hype train moving well into 2023. I think Trump won’t blow his big announcement on a desperate, ineffective attempt to lower Merrick Garland.
Even if Haberman’s report proves true, and Trump enters the race so early, I don’t see any evidence that it will impact the midterms. The Democrats have been playing this game for the past year and a quarter, and it has failed miserably from Virginia to Texas. Trump’s chances of running again are baked into the cake. Biden isn’t on the November ballot, so it’s difficult to make anything a referendum between people who aren’t running for office.
There’s also the issue-level stuff you need to think about. Trump’s average gas price was just over $2 per gallon. Low inflation and Russia weren’t invading Europe were the case. Stock market losses weren’t affecting retirements. It would be absurd to suggest that people will vote Democrats in 2022, disregarding all of the current failures. They are scared of Trump, who…delivered positive results.
The idea that Trump 2024’s early formation is going to cause problems for Republicans in 2022 makes no sense. It’s the epitome of a too-inside-the-beltway take that believes people care more about January 6th than high grocery prices.