Sunday, August 14, 2016

The Hillary is a Bad Candidate Illusion and Why it Won't Die

Brian Beutler does a good job of showing that it's because it debunks cherished illusions of the GOPers on one side and the both sides do it media on the other.

The GOP’s New Delusion: Hillary Would Be Losing Badly to Any Other Republican

"For Republicans, this is both a tragic and bracing conclusion—tragic for the opportunity lost; bracing for the implication that underneath the necrotic tissue of Trumpism you’ll find a mostly healthy political organism."

"For political writers, it’s a remembrance of things past but hopefully not lost—a time when presidential campaigns were exciting yet value-neutral competitions between teams with familiar players."

When I hear people say silly things like this:

"Against almost anyone else Clinton would be behind and we'd be spending at least half our time mocking her. But since Trump is a buffoon..."

I wonder who is included in 'almost anyone else.' Would it be Jeb Bush who tripped on questions about his own name?

How about Ted Cruz? Sure 'almost anyone else' but not many who actually was running. I'm guessing Marco Rubio is who they have in mind. The Beltway loved him as he's what to their mind a politician should sound like.

But then you remember that his NH robotic glitch moment and that he lost his own home state by almost 20 points to Donald Trump.

Here is Josh Barro:

"Hilariously, Trump's wide loss is going to lead to Trumpkins arguing Hillary was an *unusually strong* candidate.

He's referring to Laura Ingraham's tweet here:

So we're supposed to believe that all these candidates who cdnt beat Trump, wd somehow be able to vanquish the Clintons? All righty."

Yet I think she's right. Why would you assume that candidates who couldn't beat Trump would have had an easy time of it with Hillary?

I agree that Rubio or Kasich would have been more competitive as the GOP would largely unify behind either of them. But the Dems still had amazing unity this year. You have to remember that even without Trump the Dems have certain structural and fundamental advantages that would be in play as they were against Romney.

Bruce Bartlett nails it here:

"I wonder how many anti-Trump Republicans know he is a symptom of their party's sickness, not its cause? Not many that I see."

The illusion that Hillary would have been losing badly to any other Republican allows them to pretend that Trump is the cause.

"Anti-Trump Republicans delude themselves that once Trump is gone everything will return to normal. Pick up seats in 2018 & WH in 2020."

Scott Sumner also has this particular illusion. He thinks the GOP can come back in 2020. This ignores that their problems run deeper.

To be optimistic, GOP must ignore bad secular trends--rising minority voters, declining white, rising millennials, falling elderly."

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