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Crowing about the Trump verdict will only hurt Biden – populists thrive on claims of persecution | Simon Jenkins

“G“Guilty,” a New York Times headline shouted with unconcealed glee last week. Shouts of contempt rained down on Donald Trump as he stalked out of a Manhattan courtroom, where he now awaits sentencing. Three more criminal casesTwo of those were about his response to his 2020 election loss.

Ecstasy is a dangerous substance in politics. Trump’s enemies should be careful what they wish for. Within 24 hours of Trump leaving the courtroom, $39 million was funneled into his campaign coffersWhile some Republicans appear hesitant, a Reuters Ipsos poll showed that most voters intend to vote. The bias is in his favor.As with his 2016 victory, the more the political establishment condemns him, the more those outside its reach will be drawn to him.

For many in the United States and around the world, the prospect of a Trump return is an absurd trivialization of the populist surge that many Western democracies have experienced. top several polls That was enough to scare anxious Republicans into supporting him. For House Speaker Mike Johnson, his conviction in New York was “a shocking blow to the Republican Party.”A shameful day in American history … It’s a purely political stunt.” The same was true in the right-wing media. Rupert Murdoch’s New York Post responded to the Times’ “Guilty” headline with another one-word response: “Unjust.”

For many legal scholars, the fact that Trump’s prosecutor, Alvin Bragg, was a Democrat and had vowed to “get Trump” certainly lent the trial a political dimension, making it quite likely that Trump would win an appeal next year. If that were to follow a “stolen” Biden victory, there would be reason for alarm. President Trump over the weekend Regarding the possibility of house arrest, President Trump said, “I don’t know if the American people can stand that… There’s a breaking point.” The attack on the U.S. Capitol on January 6, 2021, showed what that means.

New York erupts in cheers and cries as Trump is convicted – VIDEO

When it comes to Trump’s next trial, “justice delayed” has never been more clearly denied. The US judiciary is highly politicized. Trump’s Supreme Court reshuffle during his presidency halted any progress against him at the federal level. This has led him to ignore local state prosecutors as political opponents. This, in turn, has led to the populist legend of “Left-Behind Americans,” or as Trump calls them, “the ones who are left behind.”SwampLiberal elites on the East and West Coasts of the United States.

This divide between “insiders and outsiders”, city and country, is impossible to ignore. It exists in all Western democracies. The Brexit referendum was rooted in reformist Nigel Farage and Trump-backed Boris Johnson. called his trial “Machine guns, mob assassinations.” However outrageous their cause, populists are clearly united.

So for those who see a Trump presidency as a disaster, the next six months will require more caution than celebration. Trump attracts his supporters not because of their love for them, but because of their hatred for their enemies. Increased among non-college graduatesthe poor, African-Americans, even Latinos. Joe Biden’s strength lies rather with the better-educated and wealthy. The old divisions between Republicans and Democrats are irrelevant in an age of populism.

The answer is not to argue Trumpism logically. Trumpism is more of a stance than a program. The TV debate with Biden will be just a gladiatorial arena. The strategy can only ease tensions, minimize Trump’s empty denunciations, and reinforce Biden’s strengths and his increasingly uncertain leadership. The election of the White House reflects the constitutional sovereign balance between Washington and the states. It is a critical time when the states, especially the dozen or so swing states whose positions change periodically, will decide whether the election will be won or lost. The outside world usually cares about who will be the US president. This time, it cares about who will not be.