In 2016, New Hampshire newspaper the Union Leader broke with its century-old tradition of endorsing Republican candidates to throw their hat into the ring for Independent candidate Gary Johnson. Endorsing a Democratic candidate like Clinton was just a bridge too far for the conservative editorial board. Well, things have changed.
On Sunday, for the first time in over 100 years, the Union Leader’s editorial board endorsed Democratic candidate Joe Biden for president. Saying that while they do not believe that Trump is “always 100 percent wrong … he is 100 percent wrong for America.”
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An important note here: reading through the endorsement of Joe Biden, the Union Leader attempts to do the thing that the Republican Party always tries to do in these scenarios. Laud the “admirable accomplishments” while deriding the many consequences of those “accomplishments.” After creating an unsustainable tax policy that the Union Leader loves, the newspaper reminds its readers that “the national debt has exploded by more than 7 TRILLION dollars.” Now, of course, the COVID-19 pandemic is a part of that debt, but also part of that debt? “Admirable accomplishments” such as Trump and the Republican party’s tax policy and increased defense spending.
Probably the best takeaway here is that the Republican Party is once again doing what they did in 2016. They are trying to create some form of plausible deniability for all of the terrible stuff their chosen leadership has done and continues to do. The first time around, while the Republican establishment said that Donald Trump was terrible, they at least had the chance to stop him once he became president. They didn’t. It turns out that Donald Trump wasn’t terrible for their policies of corporate giveaways and using white supremacist systems of bigotry and misinformation and fear to divide the masses, while employing anti-democracy voter suppression tactics in the hopes of continuing their minority rule.
Now, that same group of conservatives want to use Trump as the scapegoat for their bad policies and bigotries and elitism. They will scapegoat Trump unless, of course, he wins. Then, I suspect, they will move onto doing more of the deleterious policy-making that has brought our country to the brink of social and economic ruin.