Political observers during the Trump era have spilled a lot of ink asking where the red line is. I’d like to spill a bit on what happens if we’ve already crossed it. …
As a species, politicians almost invariably want to be liked. Presidents, in particular, know that the success of their agenda depends on how popular they are. The success of their party in the next congressional and state legislative elections is also a function of their approval rating.
Presidents will often make gestures to democratic norms, or even refrain from violating them, to avoid harsh evaluations from voters for these reasons. But this doesn’t seem to constrain Trump, who doesn’t mind when voters disapprove of him, takes it as a measure of accomplishment when he’s managed to offend people who disagree with him, or has so insulated himself that he’s convinced himself he truly is popular and the polls saying otherwise are fake news.
In this kind of situation, the harsh judgment of the American people seems rather anemic. CONT.
Seth Masket, Mischiefs of Faction