When Are We Going to Admit that Trump is Unfit to be President?

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I posted this at Instapundit, where the readership, and some of the bloggers, have been unvaryingly pro-Trump:

I know this isn't going to win me any popularity contests with most Instapundit readers, but I'm here to express my opinion, not to reflect readers', so here goes.

There is no evidence of widespread fraud that could plausibly be said to have cost Trump the election, nor even a single state. It's true the media and big tech was overtly pro-Biden, and while that's not good for democracy it's also not illegal or fraudulent, and thus has no bearing on whether Biden won the election or not. And all that is why Trump's lawyers lost every single case they brought before judges of all parties and ideologies, including a dozen or so rulings by Trump-appointed federal judges who would undoubtedly have preferred that he won.

But it's more serious than that. Even if you accept any of the not-completely-crazy theories I've seen of how the election was "stolen," at best that gets Trump to a narrow victory in the Electoral College. Yet the president continues to insist not just that he won, not just that the election was stolen, but that he won in a "landslide."

There is no excuse for political violence, and Trump, admittedly, did not ask anyone to engage in violence. However, if you tell people that their votes didn't count, that the election was a sham, that the election you lost wasn't even close but in fact a landslide in your favor, it's only natural to expect that some people will be inclined to resort to violence, because the whole point of elections is to settle political matters without violence. If the election process is a total fraud, then violence is to be expected.

Even in the face of the violence yesterday, Trump, while telling the rioters to go home, also continued to insist that he really won in a landslide, thus continuing to foment violence. He is unfit to be president. And no, that doesn't excuse all the examples of bad behavior on the left over the past 4 years, and that bad behavior undoubtedly created an atmosphere in which violence becomes more acceptable (not least by the tacit and sometimes explicit acceptance of the mass violence last Summer). But the basic moral principle of "two wrongs don't make a right" still applies. Sometimes f you fight fire with fire, you burn down your house.

 

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  1. Ok, he is unfit to be president. What, other than wait until January 20th, do you propose to do about it? Otherwise, it is a hypothetical question. (I understand this is not an Article III court, and in academia hypotheticals are beloved. But some of us live in the real world.)

    1. Bored Lawyer….sometimes, on rare occasions, doing nothing is the best option out of a range of options. That was true for the Brits (who kept an empire for 1K years by knowing when to do nothing); it is true for parenting as well (sometimes, you have to let your child learn some tough life lessons on their own).

      POTUS Trump leaves in 13 days. The best option I see that has the least amount of down side is to simply wait until January 20th.

      1. The Brits kept an empire for how long???

      2. What if that little episode was not his last play? What if he tries to run for office again?

        People need to answer for this. There is no healing without justice. Republics are fragile things. We can’t let open hostility to our republic and our constitution be tolerated among our public servants, the people entrusted with great power. It’s time to build a gallows next to the inauguration stage (figuratively speaking).

        1. “What if he tries to run for office again? ”

          He’d likely lose. But if he won, that would be the people’s choice.

          Why do you hate democracy?

          1. I hate “one vote, one time only.”

          2. Why do you strawman? Is it because you know your position is actually bullshit?

            Trump cannot be allowed a second bite at the apple. That’s presuming he won’t be spending the rest of his life in a prison cell.

        2. If Mr Trump committed a crime, and there are reasonable arguments that he committed many while in office , he can be arrested and prosecuted on January 21.
          That should be sufficient.

          1. Unless he pardons himself.

            Or tries another coup before January 21.

        3. I hope he does run again. The GOP must be burned to the ground in order to save it.

          And Trump running again will help accomplish that assuming it hasn’t been done prior.

          1. If Trump were put in prison, cut off from the Internet, the GOP could begin to rediscover its small-R republican roots and heal. We will need it as a viable, constitutional-democratic alternative if socialists capture the Democratic Party.

            1. The GOP without Trump is nothing but a surrender party. McConnell and his fellow betrayers proved that on the 6th.

    2. What I was hoping for was the same repudiation of Trump by GOP leaders and elected officials across the board.

    3. Impeach and convict. Fuck waiting- he should’ve been removed long ago.

    4. Pence and the cabinet can invoke the 25th Amendment, and/or Congress can impeach.

  2. I’ll make the over/under on “readers persuaded” at 0.

  3. Pretty much on target. Hopefully, Trump’s appalling behavior over the past two months will diminish his future influence over the Republican party. (Full disclosure: I voted for Trump, and I expect Biden to be a horrible president. But Trump has really disgraced himself.)

    1. I always felt that Trump could have run as a liberal Democrat had that been his easiest path the White House because his only ideology is narcissism. I am a liberal. During the 2016 election I told friends had Trump run as a liberal Democrat, I would not vote for him. His reprehensible character made him unfit for the office.

      Sadly, it took far too many conservatives and Republicans way too long to realize this was true. Even worse, most Republican leaders and elected officials have always known it was true. But, they made a deal with the devil that they could ride the beast in order to get their desired political outcomes (judges, tax cutes and not facing a primary challenge).

      1. The whole reason he ran as a Republican is because Dems would not vote for him. He’d never make it out of the primary.

        Republicans though have a back asswards primary and once you get to the general they’ll vote for you no matter what for whatever asinine reason they’ve convinced themselves of. It’s, again, how he beat Hillary- Dems stayed home because they didn’t like/want her. Rs have no such qualms about supporting a POS – see yesterday as the culmination of all their support and coddling when he should’ve been slapped down years ago.

        1. LOL. Coming from the “country over party” crowd who manages to vote for a fraud (Menendez, D-NJ) and Warnock (wife beater), that’s rich.

          1. Coming from the biggest racist and closeted self-loathing homophobe this site has…

            “That’s rich.”

        2. The whole reason he ran as a Republican was because Clinton was seen as a much more formidable candidate than any of the Republicans. Hell, she almost certainly was, particularly with the party leadership willing to cheat to make sure she’d win. They did it to Bernie, they’d have done it to Trump.

          He simply chose the path of least resistance.

    2. Trumps tantrums likely cost Republicans control of the Senate. I doubt may professional politicians will forget that.

      When he started his presidential campaign I’m convinced that he was doing it sa a PR stunt and never expected to win.at the campaign picked up steam he was as surprised and everyone else.

      What no one paid attention to was how many voters were dissaffected from both the Democrats and Republicans.

      1. Works for me. I’m glad to let the Democrats completely destroy the economy and the country so that everyone just knows exactly who was responsible.

    3. I agree on that. But Trump is the symptom, not the cause. The cause is the destruction of the American middle class, and of the previous American moral and civic ethos that kept us together.

  4. In some free floating, cosmic sense, I suppose Trump is unfit to be President. But it that sense, who that might plausibly get the job IS fit? Most politicians are narcissists and sociopathic liars.

    Oh, gosh, Trump isn’t an exception, impeach him!

    1. Right, which is why most politicians refuse to accept election losses, call up election officials and ask them to “find” enough votes to overturn the results, and lie to their supporters for months on end about stolen, fraudulent votes. Wait, hang on.

  5. Of course he’s unfit. Always has been. (Which is why I voted for Clinton and Biden.)

    But, as I commented a couple of days ago, *what goes around comes around.*

    That’s not to excuse it. It’s to explain it.

    Wisconsin capitol riots 2011 –> US capitol riots 2021
    Anti-Kavanaugh US capitol occuption 2018 –> Pro-trump US capitol occupation 2021
    BLM riots 2020 –> US capitol riots 2021
    Portland federal court attacks 2020 –> US capitol attacks 2021

    Those who supported some or all of the former have no standing to object to the latter. IMO.

    1. Democrat support, liberal activism —> Not that

      There is no reconciling any of this because every single activism event on the left is “acceptable” to the political class.

    2. Yeah no. Last I checked none of the BLM protests and such were seditious nor domestic terrorism.

      Try again fuckface.

      1. You should check again!

      2. Burning restaurants and setting fire to police stations and other government buildings is not domestic terrorism? Fuck you, you hypocritical, leftist piece of shit.

      3. When Trump said “special people” in his video yesterday he was referring to you.

      4. Hey, we’re not the one defending riots. That’s you.

        If only you were capable of applying consistent logic across the political spectrum…..

    3. What Al said. Exactly what he said.

      If you didn’t condemn, or even supported this summer’s riots, that’s not the moral high ground you’re standing on while condemning this.

      1. Why should we care about moral posturing anyway? High ground or no high ground?

        Treat people like enemies, expect reciprocal treatment yourself.

  6. When are we going to admit that “China” Joe Biden is unfit to be president? And what are we going to do about that?

    1. We have no basis for knowing his fitness as of now. Thanks for your contribution.

      1. Were you entirely oblivious during the campaign? Maybe you personally have no basis for knowing his fitness, but the rest of us do.

      2. Considering the guy was a party the Obama admin arming al-qaeda during his tenure as VP I’d say that means he’s unfit

        1. Obama is a disgusting, subhuman animal who has no conscience or qualms about gaslighting his opponents and using the government against them. No better than Mao or Stalin.

          1. You’re clearly mentally ill. Query whether that exculpates any of your moral responsibility for the steaming river of genocidal excrement you leave in your wake.

      3. We have no basis for knowing his fitness as of now.

        It’s good to see that you’re finally out of your coma, but you’ve got some catching up to do.

  7. Thank you, professor. I couldn’t agree more.

  8. Good lord, he already lost the election. You are proving yourself not only a poor loser but a poor winner. Show some grace. Stop fanning the flames.

    1. Rossami,
      I think the next play is Mr Biden’s. He must decide whether he wants Mr Trump prosecuted for violations of federal law. Rather than folks jumping up and down and screaming for blood, we should respect his prerogative and his judgement.

    2. Grace? After Trump’s 4 years? If Rs showed an ounce of grace ever then maybe that would be the case.

      As it is, this is nothing more than posting about how the sitting president of the US is fanning the flames of an insurrection.

      1. So two wrongs make a right in your world? Do you really think that this series of diatribes is doing anything to heal the partisan divides?

  9. There is plenty “evidence” of fraud. It’s just you leftists ignore it in your quest to return to absolute power. This has been going on for more than 20 years and NOTHING is being done about it. A large part of the population believes that the election was STOLEN by obvious FRAUD. But the leftists don’t want to investigate because ???? This isn’t the final time you will see something like this. And if you think 75 million citizens can be ignored, you will find out different.

    1. Oh is that why the R Senate refused to take on any election security bills the House passed?

      Quit crying snowflake.

    2. Present your evidence snowflake. Let’s see it all. They couldn’t do it in court but I’m sure FiftycalTX2 has all of it at their fingertips.

      Come on. Pony up. Flip your cards pansy.

    3. Sixty court cases dismissed by judges of all political genesis say there was no evidence.

      What you are saying is that the GOP/Trump lawyers withheld evidence in the cases they were pursuing.

      1. Are you familiar with the legal doctrine of adverse inference?

    4. Wow. Trump must have appointed some really terrible, leftist judges if so many of them have rejected the evidence of obvious fraud!

    5. Then take your evidence, and file a case in court.

      Oh, they’d laugh your ass out of the door and no lawyer would sign onto it for fear of sanctions or being disbarred?

      That’s what we thought. Shut the fuck up.

    6. There is plenty “evidence” of fraud. It’s just you leftists ignore it in your quest to return to absolute power.

      And Trump-appointed judges.

  10. People will probably admit it when it is true. Until then everyone will just view this as a desperate last ditch attempt to “get” a President you have hated since day 1.

    1. “People will probably admit it when it is true.”

      Was that your admission?

  11. By the way, I’ve always found this “When are we going to admit” formulation painfully tendentious. It presumes the people disagreeing with you actually agree, and are just in denial or lying.

    No, people have real disagreements about these things.

    1. Then defend his fitness for office. Enough with the “oh, he’s bad like all politicians are bad” crap.

      1. He can’t. Just another deluded member of the cult. It’s what they always do- just “both sides” bullshit when they’re caught with their pants down.

      2. 4 years…no new wars…peace in the middle east…COVID vaccine developed in record time…

        1. “Peace in the Middle East?” Are you insane?

          1. Trump has secured more peace treaties in the Middle East between Israel and other Arab countries than the last 3 Presidents combined.

            So, yes.

        2. “no new wars…peace in the middle east…COVID vaccine developed in record time…”

          Coronavirus spread as much as possible… unstable border wall built with private funds… nothing actually done to address significant population of unlawful resident non-citizens…
          Plus, who could forget that awesome health-care bill he signed on Day One?

          1. 1. Coronavirus spread as much as possible
            No one seriously blames that on Trump, given the spread in the rest of the world. If you do, well…that’s just being silly.

            2. unstable border wall built with private funds
            OK…a wall was built with Private funds? And?

            3. nothing actually done to address significant population of unlawful resident non-citizens
            And….That’s about the same as the last 4 Presidents.

            1. Trump can be blamed for the lack of an organized plan to deal with the pandemic, esp. spending the last two months as it has gotten out of control while he obsessed over his election loss.

              1. lol. sure. I’m sure Fauci will soon be revealing how incompetent the federal government’s response was.

            2. “1. Coronavirus spread as much as possible
              No one seriously blames that on Trump, given the spread in the rest of the world. If you do, well…that’s just being silly.”

              Agreed: Trump is just silly. As was his “plan” to deal with the pandemic by spreading it as far as possible, so that people would be immune from having had the disease. Hard to see how the rest of the world helps your case that intentionally spreading the disease was a good idea.

            3. “3. nothing actually done to address significant population of unlawful resident non-citizens
              And….That’s about the same as the last 4 Presidents.”

              Do you suffer from short-term memory loss?
              The previous President went to Congress to ask for legislation allowing him to hire more hearings officers to hold more deportation hearings, and then moved to remove unlawful status from a substantial number of illegal residents. Perhaps you recall… one of these things got heavy coverage on AM radio and Fox News, although there was pretty much no coverage at all of the other.

    2. People also have real disagreements about the shape of the earth, the existence of climate change, and the existence of angels. That doesn’t make that disagreement reasonable.

      1. No one disagrees about the existence of climate change. What we disagree on is whether it’s caused by man, i.e. anthropogenic.

        1. And you’re still an ignorant twat for that and many other reasons.

          1. Fuck off, you piece of shit.

            1. Triggered!

        2. That whole topic is a red herring, since it has not been determined, or even examined, whether climate change, if it happens, presents any threat to human beings, much less what is the most cost-effective way to fix it if anything needs to be done at all. I say extraordinary demands on other people require extraordinary proof.

          1. The people whose houses were consumed by fire or hurricane retain the right to laugh directly into your face if you profess this lunacy anywhere near them.

  12. The problem with binary choices is that they are binary. Four years ago (and again three months ago), the choice wasn’t between someone who was fit to be President and someone who was not; instead, it was between two wholly unfit candidates, one of whom was ever so slightly more palatably unfit than the other.

    Years ago, given a choice between someone lacking practical experience, lacking an amiable personality, demonstrably unable to protect classified information, and demonstrably unwilling to defend the basic rights of opponents and an alternative, Americans selected the alternative. Months ago, given a choice between the status quo and a friendly and humorous (yet notably ineffective and dotty) individual, Americans selected the dear old grandpappy (albeit with the hope that he wouldn’t confuse “lunch” and “launch”).

    A Russian op-ed of almost a decade ago once compared Presidents Obama and Bush by describing one as “shit which stinks” and the other as “shit disguised with perfume.” That often seems to be true of American Presidents.

    1. “Years ago, given a choice between someone lacking practical experience, lacking an amiable personality, demonstrably unable to protect classified information, and demonstrably unwilling to defend the basic rights of opponents and an alternative, Americans selected the alternative.”

      Yes, more Americans did in fact select Hillary Clinton than did select Donald Trump. At least, I hope that’s what you’re saying, since everything before the word “and” in that sentence describes Trump.

      1. How does Trump keep finding all these people who are unable to perceive objective reality?

    2. “Years ago, given a choice between someone lacking practical experience, lacking an amiable personality, demonstrably unable to protect classified information, and demonstrably unwilling to defend the basic rights of opponents and an alternative, Americans selected the alternative.”

      They did, but the EC made that selection ineffective.

  13. When are we going to admit David Bernstein is a putz?

    1. Done, and done.

  14. There is a very simple and sound basis for believing that Trump won the election by a landslide: count the attendees at any Trump rally, and any Biden rally, throughout 2020.

    What the raising of this question really shows is that the major media have successfully gaslighted the American public, not enough to give Biden a majority but enough to convince millions that they had done so. The so-called news has been nothing but vicious lies since 2008. And as of election night that includes Fox.

    There are still blogs and podcasts I trust to give me real news. gellerreport.com is one I recommend. VC is not.

    1. If only we had better way to determine political support other then rally size.

    2. “There is a very simple and sound basis for believing that Trump won the election by a landslide: count the attendees at any Trump rally, and any Biden rally, throughout 2020.”

      There’s an even simpler and sounder basis for determining that Trump did not win the election: count up the votes, and notice that more of them were not for Mr. Trump.

      Doing this doesn’t introduce any mistakes created by the fact that Mr. Biden’s supporters understand how a pandemic works, while Mr. Trump’s supporters do not which throws off “rally-size” measurement.

      1. Until and unless there is a full forensic audit of the entire election, no trustworthy count of the votes has been made.

        1. Unless and until you develop reason, your unreasonable doubt proves nothing.

  15. Looks like all the Reason writers are getting in their last licks at Trump before he leaves.

    But what will they do when he’s gone?

    1. They’ll go back to whining that all the (other) candidates are corrupt socialists. As if they weren’t partly responsible for driving out the one man who is neither.

      1. Obama?

        You can’t possibly be referring to Trump, who is the most corrupt human being ever to serve in the office, and while not formally a socialist – because that would require an ideology beyond a personality cult – he has pursued socialist policies throughout his tenure.

    2. What makes you think he’s leaving any way other than kicking and screaming, dragged by the scruff of the neck?

  16. There’s no fitness criteria.

    It’s America that’s unfit. Trump is just the guy with focus right now.

  17. Okay, Trump is / was unfit to be President. But then so is Biden, Harris, and everyone else who ran for President in 2020 and 2016.

    1. What do you have against JoJo?

      1. Every policy he supports.

    2. Bothsides bothsides bothsides.

      1. Not JUST both sides, I include all the third party candidates too.

        He who desires power is unworthy of it. All political candidates are unfit.

        1. Cincinnatus demands an apology.

  18. If only a majority of American voters had seen that Trump was unfit for the Presidency (in 2016, and again in 2020)… we wouldn’t need to be having this conversation now, and, uh…

  19. Unfit to be President? Seriously? It can be argued the President Trump was the best one term President in the history of the nation.

    However the decisions were made, it is hard to argue that his Administration made excellent decisions on a wide range of policy. In almost every case, the man you are claiming was “UNFIT” to be President made much better decisions than the “experts” with decades of Establishment experience.

    Take General Mattis as an example. This man, contrary to President Trump, wanted to leave U.S. boots on the ground in Northern Syria to “support our allies”. He resigned over that decision. But Trump was right and Mattis wrong.

    You look across the board: Trump’s economic policies of low taxes and deregulation had the U.S. economy booming. Trump’s trade policies was forcing other nations to remove their trade restrictions and trade manipulations (it is foreign countries, not the US that have been dominant protectionist). And Trump’s Middle East policies were bringing real peace, potentially permanent with changes in Israeli-Palestinian affairs.

    But Trump was a change agent. You see, Republican/Conservative politicians have been trained to play nice, to take the high road, and to just take the verbal/physical assaults that the Left barrages them with. Bush I, Bush II, Mitt Romney. Distinguished gentleman but what did that get them? More attacks. Being called racists and xenophobes and misogynists, and worse.

    Trump would not tolerate such abuse from the Left and would not stand idle. I agree, this caused many unforced errors. But how come Trump’s behavior is the only behavior ever under the microscope. Look at the behavior of his opponents and ask yourself who is truly unfit.

    But, because we have people like this that essentially attack Trump for being unfit, the Left and Trump Deranged get a free pass.

    1. ” Trump’s economic policies of low taxes and deregulation had the U.S. economy booming. Trump’s trade policies was forcing other nations to remove their trade restrictions and trade manipulations.

      That is some excellent revisionism. You’re confusing Trump’s cluelessness for policy.

  20. Volokh remains incorrigible when it comes to English grammar: “It’s true the media and big tech was overtly pro-Biden” should read “It’s true the media and big tech were overtly pro-Biden” since “media” is plural and “big tech” can be considered plural, and, in any case the two joined by “and” make a plural subject of the verb. Read this quick, since Volokh likes to delete critical comments.

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