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Divided We Stand

Divided We Stand
New book about the 2020 election.

Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Problematic Senate Candidate in Wisconsin, Continued

Our most recent book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics.  Among other things, it discusses state and congressional elections. In 2024, several Republican Senate candidates are having problems.  One is Eric Hovde of Wisconsin.

Dems, Progs, and Israel

Our latest book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics.  The 2024 race has begun.  The Gaza war is politically dangerous for Biden. A shocking percentage of young people think that the October 7 massacre was justified.  And Arab Americans in the key state of Michigan may be turning away from the president. 

Mara Gay at NYT:
For the first time in decades, possibly since the anti-Vietnam War and environmental movements, the left wing has led the center of the Democratic Party in a new political direction on a major issue — one sharply critical of the Israeli government, impatient with the leadership of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and increasingly willing to use American leverage to curb Israel’s military plans.

In recent weeks, Democratic leaders have begun inching closer to the progressive view that it is against U.S. interests to continue sending unconditional U.S. military aid to Mr. Netanyahu’s government in an asymmetrical war that has killed thousands of innocent civilians in Gaza. And they have recognized that anger among Democratic voters — especially young voters — over the U.S. role in Gaza is a serious threat to Mr. Biden’s re-election that cannot be ignored.

Jeffrey M. Jones at Gallup:

Prevailing political patterns in Middle East sympathies remain in place this year. Republicans overwhelmingly sympathize with Israel over the Palestinians, independents tend to favor Israel, and more Democrats side with the Palestinians than Israelis. This is the case even as Democrats give Israel much higher favorable ratings than they give the Palestinian Authority. The Democrats’ movement has been recent; until 2022, Democrats were more likely to sympathize with Israel.

Among age groups, young adults are slightly more sympathetic to the Palestinians than the Israelis (after being equally divided last year), with the other groups sympathizing with Israel.

But does this sympathy translate into votes in the voting booth or on the floor?

The Biden world counterpoint comes courtesy of the recent Harvard Youth poll, which found economic issues — not the war in Gaza — dominating the list of issues that matter to young voters. (Only 2% of respondents cited the “Israel/Palestine conflict” as their top concern.) Aides also note the campaign has launched a major youth outreach effort and that “the youth vote and the student vote are not synonymous.”

Harvard polling guru JOHN DELLA VOLPE agreed that there is little “evidence that this is on its way to being a cultural phenomenon.” But, he added: “How this evolves, who knows? … Hopefully things improve. But I would not be willing to write [the protests] off right now.”

Most House Democrats supported Israel aid on Saturday, but the nay vote was higher among Dems than Reps.

GOVTRACK: H.R. 8034: Israel Security Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2024

This was a vote to pass H.R. 8034 in the House. The federal budget process occurs in two stages: appropriations and authorizations. This is an appropriations bill, which sets overall spending limits by agency or program, typically for a single fiscal year (October 1 through September 30 of the next year).

Vote Outcome
All VotesRD
Not Voting

Passed. Simple Majority Required. Source:

Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Trump Money Woes

Our most recent book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics.  Among other things, it discusses party organizations and campaign finance.

Lloyd Green at The Guardian:

Donald Trump dodged financial calamity on Monday. The office of Letitia James, the New York attorney general, and lawyers for Trump reached agreement in open court on the terms governing the appellate bond posted by the former president. 


Trump would no longer maintain any authority over the account. In turn, James remains barred from enforcing her $454m judgment against Trump and his businesses. For those keeping score, Trump is now out-of-pocket in a neighborhood north of a quarter of a billion dollars and counting.

His pretense of being cash-rich is soiled. In March, he shelled out for a separate $91.63m bond while he appeals the $83.3m verdict in the latest E Jean Carroll defamation case. Earlier, he paid another $4m into court to block Carroll from collecting a prior defamation judgment, also on appeal.

The stock price of Trump Media & Technology Group – his eponymous meme stock, DJT – is in the doldrums. Politico also reports that Save America, a Trump-controlled Pac, has already spent $59m on his legal fees and may run shortly out of money.

Beyond that, Trump World tussles with Ken Griffin, a major Republican donor and the chief of Citadel Securities, a leading Wall Street market-maker. Last Thursday, Devin Nunes – the former Republican congressman who resigned from the House to run Trump’s media company – wrote to the head of the Nasdaq, raising the issue of “potential market manipulation” of DJT stock and blasting “naked short-selling”.

Griffin, whose wealth is estimated at a cool $37bn, quickly struck back. He branded Nunes a “proverbial loser” whom Trump “would have fired on the Apprentice”. He also accused the humorless Californian of trying to deflect blame for DJT’s lackluster stock price.

Jessica Piper at Politico:

A PAC controlled by former President Donald Trump that has devoted tens of millions of dollars to his and his allies’ legal bills could be running out of cash after spending nearly $3.7 million on legal fees in March.

Save America, Trump’s leadership PAC, has now spent $59.5 million on legal consulting since the start of 2023. It also incurred $886,000 in new legal debt in March, according to a report filed with the Federal Election Commission late Saturday. More than $1.1 million of its March spending went toward two firms representing Trump in his New York criminal hush money trial.

The total spent on legal expenses for Save America was almost as much as Trump’s campaign committee in the month of March, highlighting how legal troubles have sucked up the cash of his political operation. Trump’s official campaign committee spent just over $3.7 million in March, with travel expenses, followed by payroll, occupying its biggest expenditure categories.

That total is minuscule compared to the more than $29 million that President Joe Biden’s campaign spent in March, with the incumbent launching a major ad campaign.

Save America, Trump’s leadership PAC, was able to stay in the black in March due to another $5 million refund in March from Make America Great Again Inc., the Trump-backing super PAC. The super PAC has transferred $5 million to the leadership PAC each month going back to last July, with less regular transfers before then.

The leadership PAC initially seeded the super PAC with $60 million before he announced his candidacy. Now, MAGA Inc. can only send $2.75 million more back to Save America, raising questions about whether Save America will continue to be the vehicle to fund legal bills in several cases linked to Trump.


Monday, April 22, 2024

Rightward Shift Among Chinese Americans in SF

In Defying the Odds, we talk about the social and economic divides that enabled Trump to enter the White House. In Divided We Stand, we discuss how these divides played out in 2020.  Our next book will carry the story through 2024.

 Jim Carlton  and Christine Mai-Duc at WSJ:

Long a reliable voting bloc for the left, Chinese-Americans have been important drivers of a recent backlash against progressive policies in San Francisco, which has grown in support and been backed by tech industry money.

Members of the Chinese community, who make up one-fifth of this city of 810,000 and a slightly smaller percentage of registered voters, say they have been particularly incensed by incidents of anti-Asian violence, school policies they believe have emphasized equity over merit, and street homelessness. Many are also upset that property crime has long been higher in San Francisco than most other major cities, though it has dropped this year.

Chinese-Americans were among the most emphatic backers of ballot measures passed last month mandating drug screening for public welfare recipients and expanding police powers, as well as the 2022 recall of the three school board members and the district attorney, Chesa Boudin. Their margin of support for those efforts was 10 to 30 percentage points higher than the overall San Francisco voting population, according to an analysis of publicly available data by research firm Data Second. The firm is run by the husband of Marjan Philhour, a candidate for San Francisco Board of Supervisors running on a moderate platform.

In the past, Chinese-Americans often voted for representatives from their own community, in which political activists had close ties to left-wing political movements. That was particularly true in Chinatown, the oldest enclave of Chinese immigrants in the U.S., dating to the 1850s.

As Chinese residents climbed the socioeconomic ladder, however, they increasingly moved to the city’s western, more suburban neighborhoods and began voting for reasons other than ethnic representation, political analysts and community leaders said.

Many Chinese-American voters grew angry at the political establishment during the pandemic, when prolonged school closures and a move away from merit-based admissions at one elite high school incensed families who put an emphasis on education.

Sunday, April 21, 2024

Deepening Diploma Divide

In Defying the Odds, we talk about the social and economic divides that enabled Trump to enter the White House. In Divided We Stand, we discuss how these divides played out in 2020.  

Nate Moore at The Liberal Patriot:

We are on track for a historically large education divide among white voters. An average of recent polls finds Joe Biden winning white college-educated voters by 18 points and losing white non-college voters by 27 points—a colossal gap of 45 points. 

Compared to 2020 results, Trump’s margin with non-college whites is holding steady, while Biden has significantly improved his standing with degree-holding whites. Such Democratic improvement is certainly welcome for Team Biden, but not unexpected. College-educated white voters have been shifting blue for a decade, driven left by Trump and the GOP’s hardline cultural stances. The flip side of the demographic coin is that nonwhite voters, particularly those without a degree, are moving towards Republicans. Should current trends continue, education polarization—rather than racial—will become the defining feature of American elections. 


RFK Jr's Family and Associates Are Against Him

President Joe Biden received the formal endorsement of more than a dozen members of the extended Kennedy family on Thursday, aiming to harness the legacy of a storied Democratic family while implicitly underscoring their near-universal rejection of a third-party challenge mounted by one of their own, Robert F. Kennedy Jr.

The broader Kennedy family has mostly shunned RFK Jr.’s campaign, calling it “dangerous,” even as the candidate himself looks to capitalize on his last name and family history.

But Thursday’s event in Philadelphia - the same city where RFK Jr. announced his independent bid for the presidency in October - nonetheless highlights the threat Kennedy poses to Biden as he seeks to win reelection in a race where even a low-performing third-party candidate could act as a spoiler.

Aaron Pellish at CNN:

Environmental groups are condemning Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s presidential bid and his environmental policy in new efforts on Friday, portraying him as a candidate who will increase the chances former President Donald Trump is reelected.

The Natural Resources Defense Council, a climate advocacy group where Kennedy previously served as senior attorney for 28 years, is planning to run a full-page advertisement in newspapers through its political arm in six battleground states on Sunday. According to a copy of the ad obtained by CNN, the group is calling on Kennedy to drop out of the race to prevent him from being a spoiler for Trump, who they call “the single worst environmental president our country has ever had.”

“We have spent our careers fighting to protect the planet and its people. As current and former leadership and board members of the NRDC Action Fund, as well as former colleagues of Robert F. Kennedy Jr., we have one message for him: Honor our planet, drop out,” the ad reads.

“In nothing more than a vanity candidacy, RFK Jr. has chosen to play the role of election spoiler to the benefit of Donald Trump – the single worst environmental president our country has ever had,” the ad continues.

Friday, April 19, 2024

Another Problematic Senate Candidate

Our most recent book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics.  Among other things, it discusses state and congressional elections. In 2024, several Republican Senate candidates are having problems. 

 Matthew Chapman at Raw Story:

Wisconsin Senate candidate Eric Hovde is unhappy that the media is covering his proliferation of MAGA election conspiracy theories.

In a new video posted to X, Hovde — a banking and real estate development executive challenging Democratic Sen. Tammy Baldwin — complained that news outlets were mischaracterizing his past statements about voting in nursing homes, implying that he was saying senior citizens shouldn't be allowed to vote. In reality, he said, he was just casting doubt that all the senior citizens who voted in 2020 actually did so.

"Let me tell you how a political hit job works, and the Democrats are experts at this," said Hovde. "So last week, in some news articles, there were written that I don't believe elderly should be able to vote. How did that come about? Because I absolutely believe the elderly should vote."

His actual statement, Hovde continued, was purely about "election integrity issues" and this got spread out of control through Democratic-controlled "phony news organizations." "It's patently false," he said. "It's fundamentally wrong."

The remarks at issue came from an interview Hovde gave on the Guy Benson Show, first reported by the left-leaning Heartland Signal, where he said, "We had nursing homes, where the sheriff of Racine investigated, where you had 100 percent voting in nursing homes. Well, if you're in a nursing home, you only have a five, six-month life expectancy. Almost nobody in a nursing home is in a point to vote."

Hovde did not explicitly say senior citizens shouldn't be allowed to vote; however, his remarks disparaging the idea most nursing home residents are of sound mind to vote in the first place generated widespread controversy and anger in the local press.

Thursday, April 18, 2024

Problematic GOP Senate Candidates

Our most recent book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics.  Among other things, it discusses state and congressional elections. Several Republican Senate candidates are having problems. 

In Montana, GOP recruit Tim Sheehy is having trouble explaining what he had claimed was a war wound.

Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Protection Money

 Our most recent book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics.  Among other things, it discusses party organizations and campaign finance.

Thomas Edsall at NYT:

Kim Lane Scheppele, a professor at Princeton of sociology and international affairs, summed up in an email the Trump-driven changes in the politics of raising money: “Most business leaders unfamiliar with autocratic government believe that when they support someone running for office, that person will owe them something if elected, tax cuts, deregulation, whatever the business leaders want.”

But, Scheppele continued, “autocrats turn the tables. Once elected, autocrats use the power of the state to squeeze business.
In these circumstances, she added, political leaders “can threaten businesses with tax audits, more regulation, even criminal charges, unless they give in to the autocrats’ demands.”

Project 2025, Scheppele wrote,
is a blueprint for autocracy. In fact, it’s a direct copy of the plan that Viktor Orban used to take over the Hungarian government in 2010. If it is carried out, Project 2025 will concentrate huge power in the hands of the president, giving him the power to control the whole federal government at his whim. If business leaders think that this will benefit them and that giving up the rule of law is good for business, they will quickly learn that they are wrong. But it will be too late.


Perhaps most important, Project 2025 asserts that “President Trump’s Schedule F proposal regarding accountability in hiring must be reinstituted.”

Schedule F, which Trump sought to initiate by executive order in 2020, would turn the top 50,000 or so civil servants, who are currently protected from arbitrary firing or demotion, into political appointees under the control of his administration. Trump lost the White House before Schedule F could be applied, and Biden withdrew the executive order creating it.

For corporate America, application of Schedule F would radically escalate uncertainty. Federal officials making decisions ranging from penalties for failed occupational safety violations to initiation of antitrust proceedings, from I.R.S. rulings to the application of sanitary regulations in nursing homes would presumably have to prioritize loyalty to Trump to keep their jobs.

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

The End of Election Modeling

Our most recent book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics.  Among other things, it discusses the politics of economic policy.

At Marketplace, Kimberly Adams says that the economy  is becoming less predictive of political attitudes and behavior.
As a result, according to Alan Abramowitz, a professor emeritus of political science at Emory University, “these sorts of forecasting models that incorporate measures of economic conditions are just not working very well anymore.”

Abramowitz said another reason forecasting is harder these days is that, although models can be quite good at predicting the popular vote, that’s not how presidents are elected in the United States.

“What ultimately matters, of course, is the electoral vote,” Abramowitz said, referring to the Electoral College, “and the electoral vote hinges on the outcomes in a handful of closely contested states. Well, that’s very difficult to predict.”

For the first time in his decadeslong career, Abramowitz said he won’t even bother trying to put together a forecasting model this year.

“I know that enterprise continues, people will continue to do this,” he said. “I am so skeptical about the value of this particular enterprise right now … I’d rather leave it to others to try to figure out how to do this. And I think a lot of us who’ve been in this game for a long time probably feel about the same way.”

Views of the economy used to shape political choices.  Increasingly, it is the other way around. 

Kathy Frankovic at YouGov:

In 2000, a change in presidential administration from Democratic to Republican shifted the way partisanship affects economic views – even without a real change in economic measures. Economic assessments shifted in the opposite direction when Biden succeeded Trump as president. At the beginning of the Trump administration, Republicans and Democrats differed on how they saw the economy moving, with Republicans far more likely than Democrats to say the economy was getting better and Democrats far more likely to say it was getting worse. That difference was even larger in the weeks before the 2020 election. A month after Joe Biden’s victory — which was a month before his inauguration — Democrats remained negative on the direction of the economy, while Republicans were moving in that direction. The responses in the week before and the week after the inauguration show large movements in both parties. By the time Biden took office, Republicans viewed economic trends more negatively and Democrats saw them more positively.

Monday, April 15, 2024

The Way We Weren't

Our most recent book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics. The 2024 race has begun.

In just a few years, a lot of people have forgotten how bad 2020 waws.

Lisa Lerer and Ruth Igielnik at NYT:
Views of Donald J. Trump’s presidency have become more positive since he left office, bolstering his case for election and posing a risk to President Biden’s strategy of casting his opponent as unfit for the presidency, according to a new poll by The New York Times and Siena College.

While the memories of Mr. Trump’s tumultuous and chaotic administration have not significantly faded, many voters now have a rosier picture of his handling of the economy, immigration and maintaining law and order. Ahead of the 2020 election, only 39 percent of voters said that the country was better off after Mr. Trump took office. Now, looking back, nearly half say that he improved things during his time as president.

The poll’s findings underscore the way in which a segment of voters have changed their minds about the Trump era, recalling those years as a time of economic prosperity and strong national security. The shift in views about his administration comes even as Mr. Trump faces dozens of felony counts and will appear in a New York courtroom on Monday for jury selection in one of his four criminal trials.

Sunday, April 14, 2024

The Two-Incumbent Election: Comparing Records

Our most recent book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics. The 2024 race has begun.

The nomination phase is effectively over.

Seung Min Kim and Amelia Thomson-Deveaux at AP:
There’s a reason why President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump are spending so much time attacking each other — people don’t think either man has much to brag about when it comes to his own record. Americans generally think that while they were in the White House, both did more harm than good on key issues.

But the two candidates have different weak spots. For Biden, it’s widespread unhappiness on two issues: the economy and immigration. Trump, meanwhile, faces an electorate where substantial shares think he harmed the country on a range of issues.

A new poll from the AP-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research finds that more than half of U.S. adults think Biden’s presidency has hurt the country on cost of living and immigration, while nearly half think Trump’s presidency hurt the country on voting rights and election security, relations with foreign countries, abortion laws and climate change.

Saturday, April 13, 2024

Abortion Flip-Flops

Our 2020 book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics.  Among other things, it discusses the state of the partiesThe state of the GOP is not good. Abortion was a big issue in the 2022 midtermIt will be a big issue in 2024.

Em Steck, Andrew Kaczynski, Marco Chacón and Patrick Gallagher, CNN
Republican candidates in close races across the country who once fervently backed severe abortion restrictions are shifting how they talk about the issue.

On social media, in public comments and in talking points on their websites, candidates are shying away from past hard-line positions and softening their stances. In some cases, the changes have been overt, with candidates reversing course on supporting outright bans on abortion or even denying they ever opposed it.

But in others, the shift has been more subtle and nuanced, with candidates altering or deleting previous statements, or de-emphasizing stances that had been more central to their platform just a few years ago.

CNN’s KFile examined more than a dozen competitive races at various levels and found examples of Republicans shifting or downplaying their positions on abortion following the Supreme Court’s landmark 2022 Dobbs decision that overturned a nationwide right for women to have an abortion.

Since that decision, voters have affirmed abortion rights in every state that has put the issue on the ballot. The 2022 midterm elections also saw a number of anti-abortion Republicans lose, dissolving GOP hopes for a ‘red wave’ that year.

Ahead of this year’s election, some of those losing candidates are trying to rebrand themselves by moderating their positions on abortion. Others, including some incumbents, are avoiding the issue entirely as anti-abortion rhetoric and policies are seen as politically toxic.

Donald Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, announced on Monday that abortion rights should be left to the states, effectively punting on Republican calls for a federal abortion ban in what appears to be an effort to neutralize the politically fraught issue for his party up and down the ticket in November. Trump himself has shifted on abortion repeatedly over the past 25 years.


Thursday, April 11, 2024

Montana and the Senate

Our most recent book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics.  Among other things, it discusses state and congressional elections. 

Nate Moore at The Liberal Patriot:
Republicans are clear favorites to win the U.S. Senate in November. Practically guaranteed to flip Joe Manchin’s West Virginia seat, the GOP is turning west to Montana for their majority-making win. Despite a formidable Democratic incumbent in Jon Tester, Montana was a Trump +16 state four years ago and is the party’s best bet for that crucial 51st seat.

First, let’s look at the fundamentals. As recently as 2012, the Senate was littered with red-state Democrats. That year, Democrats won in Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Indiana, and West Virginia—all with Barack Obama at the top of the ticket. Twelve years later, these electoral over performers are a dying breed. Claire McCaskill, Heidi Heitkamp, and Joe Donnelly all lost in 2018, despite a blue wave. Red-state hopefuls in 2016—like Evan Bayh and Jason Kander—came up short, dragged down by the top of the ticket.

In 2020, Senate Democrats poured hundreds of millions into South Carolina, Kansas, and Iowa—only for star recruits to run even with Biden. This ever-increasing alignment between presidential and down-ballot results highlights just how steep a climb Tester faces this cycle.

Tester’s 2012 plurality win, while impressive, is no sure sign that he will again triumph in a presidential year. The 2020 Montana Senate race offers more recent evidence: popular two-term Governor Steve Bullock lost to Republican Steve Daines by double digits. Bullock did outrun Biden, but not by nearly enough.

Wednesday, April 10, 2024

Divided, Indeed

 In Defying the Odds, we talk about the social and economic divides that enabled Trump to enter the White House. In Divided We Stand, we discuss how these divides played out in 2020.    It is the "coalition of the ascendant" v. "the coalition of the resentful.

From Pew:

The rural - urban divide

RFK and Other Stalking Horses

Our most recent book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics. The 2024 race has begun.

 Voters are not happy about having to choose between Trump and Biden. Trump forces are exploiting that sentiment.

Jonathan Swan, Maggie Haberman, Shane Goldmacher and Rebecca Davis O’Brien at NYT:
Allies of Donald J. Trump are discussing ways to elevate third-party candidates in battleground states to divert votes away from President Biden, along with other covert tactics to diminish Democratic votes.

They plan to promote the independent candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. as a “champion for choice” to give voters for whom abortion is a top issue — and who also don’t like Mr. Biden — another option on the ballot, according to one person who is involved in the effort and who, like several others, spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the plans.

Trump allies also plan to amplify the progressive environmental records of Mr. Kennedy and the expected Green Party candidate, Jill Stein, in key states — contrasting their policies against the record-high oil production under Mr. Biden that has disappointed some climate activists.

A third parallel effort in Michigan is meant to diminish Democratic turnout in November by amplifying Muslim voters’ concerns about Mr. Biden’s support for Israel’s war in Gaza. Trump allies are discussing running ads in Dearborn, Mich., and other parts of the state with large Muslim populations that would thank Mr. Biden for standing with Israel, according to three people familiar with the effort, which is expected to be led by an outside group unaffiliated with the Trump campaign.

Many of these third-party-boosting efforts will probably be run out of dark-money entities that are loosely supportive of Mr. Trump. Both the Trump campaign and the main super PAC supporting the former president, MAGA Inc., are already aggressively framing Mr. Kennedy as a far-left radical to draw potential Democratic voters away from Mr. Biden.

 Andrew Kaczynski,at CNN:

A New York-based campaign official for Robert F. Kennedy Jr. who raised the possibility that voting for the independent presidential candidate would help Donald Trump defeat President Joe Biden previously promoted false claims that the 2020 election was rigged and attended “Stop the Steal” rallies after the election, including the rally on January 6, 2021, in Washington, DC, that preceded the deadly riot at the US Capitol.

Rita Palma, who has identified herself as the Kennedy campaign’s state director in New York, also repeatedly called Trump her “favorite president,” according to tweets along with comments she posted on the conservative social media site Parler that have since been made private.

According to a KFILE examination of those now-private posts, Palma also posed for a photo at the former Trump International Hotel in Washington, DC, alongside Sidney Powell – the pro-Trump attorney who pleaded guilty in Georgia’s election subversion case.

In February 2021, Palma tweeted her support for Trump as a presidential candidate in 2024 and even asked whether he could run for a third term in 2028 – which is not constitutionally allowed as a president can serve only two full terms.

Tuesday, April 9, 2024

Abortion and Arizona

Our 2020 book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics.  Among other things, it discusses the state of the partiesThe state of the GOP is not good. Abortion was a big issue in the 2022 midtermIt will be a big issue in 2024.

And within hours, Arizona proved Bill Kristol correct.

 Jonathan J. Cooper at Politico:

Democrats pounced Tuesday on an Arizona Supreme Court ruling that permits enforcement of an 1864 law effectively banning abortion in the state, blaming former President Donald Trump and Republicans and pressing for political advantage on an issue that could dominate a critical 2024 battleground.

The ruling permits doctors or others to be prosecuted for performing an abortion at any time unless the mother’s life is in danger, with no exceptions for rape or incest. President Joe Biden ‘s campaign immediately blamed the ruling on Trump’s appointment of three Supreme Court justices who voted to overturn a federally guaranteed right to an abortion.

“The girls today and the young women do not have the rights that we once did because of Donald Trump,” said Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego, a Democrat. “Donald Trump is dangerous and reckless.”

Abortion Politics

Our 2020 book is titled Divided We Stand: The 2020 Elections and American Politics.  Among other things, it discusses the state of the partiesThe state of the GOP is not good. Abortion was a big issue in the 2022 midtermIt will be a big issue in 2024.

 Leigh Ann Caldwell and Theodoric Meyer at WP:

GOP candidates running for Senate in swing states are largely embracing the states’ rights message on abortion that Donald Trump outlined yesterday.

The former president tried to defang the issue by neither endorsing nor explicitly ruling out a 15-week federal abortion ban, instead saying in a video message that states should determine their own abortion laws.

It’s the latest evolution of Republicans’ shifting position on abortion, as they have worked to find a message palatable for voters who have bucked Republican candidates’ antiabortion positions since Roe v. Wade was overturned nearly two years ago.


With his video announcement yesterday that included no mention of a federal abortion ban, Trump bucked one camp of abortion opponents that had wanted him to back a 15-week ban — a group that included his former adviser Kellyanne Conway, Graham and Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America, our colleagues Josh Dawsey and Hannah Knowles report. Instead, he listened to other antiabortion advocates who wanted him to avoid being pinned down on a specific gestational limit that Congress wouldn’t be able to pass anyway.

Trump says he’s on the right side of politics. And he challenged Graham and others who disagreed.

“Many Good Republicans lost Elections because of this Issue, and people like Lindsey Graham, that are unrelenting, are handing Democrats their dream of the House, Senate, and perhaps even the Presidency,” Trump wrote on Truth Social yesterday, responding to Graham’s criticism that he “respectfully disagrees” that Trump didn't back a 15-week national ban because fetuses “feel pain” at that stage of gestation.