Source: William Sullivan
Donald Trump was a great president, and Americans of all stripes are beginning to recognize that. Even his opponents will find it hard to argue against that conclusion without waxing stupid about a supposed “January 6th insurrection” that was “worse than 9/11,” or citing the futile “impeachments” where Democrats beclowned themselves in conducting show trials against him.
The truth is that under the Trump presidency, America became a net exporter of energy. We were largely “energy independent,” a phrase that had been little more than a pipe dream since at least the 1970’s until it became a reality in Donald Trump’s America. We had a genuine path to peace in the Middle East, another prospect once-unthinkable in most of our lifetimes. The economy was the best it had been in 50 years, businesses were repatriating due to competitive tax policy, and the vast majority of Americans experienced significant tax cuts (even the New York Times begrudgingly admits this).
Perhaps most importantly, President Trump did nothing short of giving American conservatives a voice in the culture again, punching back at left-wing government-corporate-media attacks against conservative principles like life, family, and American exceptionalism, and by eventually forcing them to expose their fascistic impulses and practices for all to see.
No man is without faults, and like so many great men, Trump certainly has his share. Yet I am deeply thankful for him, and his service to this country. All of that said, if he loves this country and wants what’s best for it, he should not run for the presidency in 2024.
Here are three reasons why.
The Virginia Template
We don’t need to delve into all the fishy late-night delays in tallying newly-discovered ballots to determine that the 2020 presidential election was rigged. Molly Ball, at TIME magazine, confessed to us all that she was a conspirator among a “well-funded cabal of powerful people, ranging across industries and ideologies, working together behind the scenes influence perceptions, change rules and laws, steer media coverage and control the flow of information.”
This testimony from the horse’s mouth notwithstanding, lamenting lost battles has little value in rallying your troops to pursue a mission’s objective, and politics is no different.
Virginia, however, presents a rousing victory in the ideological contest for Americans’ hearts and minds, and one that conservatives and moderates are suddenly winning.
Biden won Virginia by 10-points in the 2020 election*. That’s the political equivalent of finishing by miles in a marathon. If you asked anyone even a year ago, Virginia would be considered solidly-blue.
Yet in November 2021, Republican Glenn Youngkin ended the longstanding Democratic stranglehold on the governorship in Virginia. Republican Winsome Sears won the Lieutenant Governor role, and Jason Miyares, another Republican, won the Attorney General role. And Republicans picked up seven seats in the Virginia House of Delegates, rallying to a two-delegate majority from being a five-delegate minority in the state legislature.
In all of this, Trump remained at arm’s length from Youngkin’s campaign. What drove that election was a massive groundswell of moderate, and even some left-wing, opposition to the huge uptick in crime, a faltering economy crippled by inflation and supply chain disruptions, and most importantly, the school closures and forced imposition of Critical Race Theory and radical sexual and transgender ideology in public schools.
Republicans won the deep-blue state of Virginia by espousing Trump’s policies in a relatively Trump-free campaign.
The point here is simple. Trump would likely win most or all red states in 2024 by presenting similar political arguments to those that won Virginia for Republicans. It seems far less likely that Trump would win in Virginia in 2024 while presenting those same arguments.
The Romney Curse
It’s politically difficult to oppose a thing that you once favored. Mitt Romney may not understand this about his own political career, but some of us observers have known it about him for a decade. The 2012 election was largely a referendum on Obamacare. And somehow, the Republican Party managed to select the only candidate that had instituted Obamacare-Lite in his own state. After pushing Romneycare for Massachusetts back in 2006, Mitt Romney was perhaps the worst choice imaginable to represent the Republican opposition to Obamacare.
2024 is destined, along with whatever comes of Biden’s foreign policy that has led us to the brink of World War III, to be a referendum on America’s liberty-strangling and economy-crushing COVID response. Time can only illuminate how wrong the government’s “health experts” have been about everything when it comes to COVID. We shut down the country over a disease that we knew, almost immediately, only severely affected the very old and immunocompromised.
Donald Trump supported the national shutdown to flatten the curve. Then he shut everything down until Easter of 2020, opening the door to a level of tyranny that has never before been seen in America. Trump had supported the lockdowns, then the masks, then the vaccines, and then the boosters.
Here the truth that Republicans can, should, and will run on in 2022 and 2024. Masks don’t work, and have never worked. There’s not a single place on the planet where they have. The vaccines may be efficacious in preventing hospitalization or death, but they do not prevent infection or transmission as was promised. And boosters? They’ve proven so obviously ineffective that they’re rarely mentioned anymore, even by the most zealous of the Fauci faithful.
The problem with later opposing a thing you once supported is a simple matter of credibility. Joe Biden knows this all too well. It’s hard to push a widely supported anti-crime bill in 1994 only to later lead a Party which argues that it was a terrible and racist idea, while also supporting the defunding of police departments across the country.
Lucky for Biden, all of the other candidates in the Democrats’ field in 2020 were so terrible and clearly unelectable that the Party conspired in his favor for the primary. After being shellacked in early primary races, he was thrown a life preserver in South Carolina in the form of a James Clyburn endorsement to carry the crucial state. Then, on Super Tuesday, the Party destroyed Bernie Sanders by forcing him to split the socialist vote with Elizabeth Warren while the supposed moderates, Amy Klobuchar and Pete Buttigieg, dropped out of the race just in time to clear the moderate lane for frail, doddering, yet hopefully nostalgically familiar Joe Biden.
Republicans will not be in such dire straits in 2024. And among potentially many suitable candidates, one stands out among the rest.
The Rise of Ron DeSantis
Ron DeSantis is the face of the opposition when it comes to government-imposed COVID tyranny and the voice of modern conservatism. He doesn’t suffer from the Romney Curse, in that he doesn’t have to defend against his own past violations upon Americans’ liberty over COVID, because he was among the first to successfully lift and speak out against those impositions.
Like Youngkin, he is able to openly and charismatically promote Donald Trump’s ideas while enjoying the benefit of being someone other than Donald Trump.
In all likelihood, the Democratic Party has already determined that the ancient and embarrassingly incompetent Joe Biden will be unelectable in 2024. The speed at which his cognitive faculties are abandoning him is scary, and this has been accentuated by the complete disaster that his presidency has proven to be.
We need a strong and measured president to lead America in these precarious times. One who doesn’t bandy loose threats of annihilation or petty insults against foreign leaders on social media. One who doesn’t necessarily embrace his role as being the most polarizing figure in American politics. One who passionately rebukes the media and demolishes their lies, but remains grounded in logic, reason, and facts.
We need a leader who can’t be tied to leading America into COVID lockdowns or, right or wrong, the mythological January 6 “insurrection.” And most importantly, we need a leader that doesn’t come with the physical and mental impairments that come with 78 years of life on Earth, as Trump will be carrying in 2024.
The frontrunner for that role, it seems clear, should be Ron DeSantis. And while Trump was the right man for the presidency in his time, I hope that he will recognize that his time for that role has passed, and he will pass the torch to his natural successor.