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Brace For a Deluge of Biden-is-More-Popular-Than-Trump Stories

Brett Davis

Posted on December 10, 2020 09:12

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Adoration, of course, isn’t necessarily a metric of presidential success so much as it is approval of the likely incoming president’s progressive agenda, both at home and abroad.

It’s already started: the beginning of what is sure to be a glut of articles about how projected President-elect Joe Biden is more beloved than President Trump ever was.

Of course, that contention is hardly surprising, considering the source: the left-leaning American mainstream media, not to mention an international order that often mistakes happy talk by an American president on diplomacy and cosmopolitan cooperation for real on-the-ground results.

Let’s stipulate Trump — a loudmouth outsider from Gotham who crashed the D.C. swamp and flouts presidential norms — is and was never a popular president in terms of conventional approval ratings. Anything over a 50 percent approval mark was considered a massive success for Trump.

Trump’s inability to get out of his own way in the form of applying his confrontational bull-in-a-china-shop approach to just about every situation — even those where it clearly wasn’t warranted — also made him a uniquely polarizing figure in modern American presidential politics.

Another stipulation: The press contributed greatly to Trump’s lack of approval with its relentlessly negative coverage that interpreted just about everything the president said and did in the worst possible light. That Trump routinely and rightly — more often than not — derided the fourth estate as “fake news” also subsidized the vicious cycle of enmity.

Trump was never going to be a popular president as the notion is traditionally understood. Still, that didn’t stop Trump from creating the conditions for a booming (pre-COVID-19) economy based on a pro-business climate that included a reduction in onerous regulations and cutting taxes. Likewise, Trump’s off-putting-to-many style didn’t stop him from filling federal courts with conservative judges. Nor did it stop him from implementing Operation Warp Speed and the resulting COVID-19 vaccines produced in record time, an accomplishment those spouting conventional wisdom assured us was impossible.

On foreign policy, not-so-popular Trump again eschewed conventional wisdom in standing up to China, moving the U.S. embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, destroying the Islamic State’s caliphate and killing its leader, isolating the rogue nation of Iran and killing its top general and facilitating peace deals between Israel and the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Sudan (and the Jewish state’s recognition of Kosovo). None of these things were accomplished by Biden’s idolized former boss, President Obama.

Meanwhile, the press fawns over a future Biden administration mending fences with the European Union and NATO, which is code for a more deferential approach to world affairs — that is, no rocking the boat by calling out nonsense and taking decisive action when appropriate. Think of Biden as Mr. Congeniality disguised as president of the United States.

Biden is the parent who wants to be his kids’ best friend, so he says, “Yes” to whatever they want. Trump is the parent who says, “No” when required. Who do you think the kids prefer?

Brett Davis

Posted on December 10, 2020 09:12

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