Why Do Trump Supporters Act Like His Election Is Certain?

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ASPartOfMe
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22 Jun 2020, 1:24 am

New York Magazine

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By any objective standard, the president’s prospects for reelection are looking down. Joe Biden is continuing to lead him in trial heats nationally (by 8.1 percent in the latest RealClearPolitics averages) and in most battleground states. The president’s job approval numbers are lower than they’ve been since last December. People are still very afraid of COVID-19, and despite one good monthly jobs report, the economy is still in the ditch, with unemployment higher than at any time since the 1930s.

Yes, yes, of course, there’s tons of time to go, the economy could somehow turn around and that second “wave” of the coronavirus could fail to appear, and Joe Biden could do or say something self-destructive. But the possibility of a Trump revival is not the same thing as its probability, much less certainty. Yet as Politico notes, there’s little doubt in MAGA-land that Trump will win in November, and maybe win big:

Interviews with more than 50 state, district and county Republican Party chairs depict a version of the electoral landscape that is no worse for Trump than six months ago — and possibly even slightly better. According to this view, the coronavirus is on its way out and the economy is coming back. Polls are unreliable, Joe Biden is too frail to last, and the media still doesn’t get it….

“The more bad things happen in the country, it just solidifies support for Trump,” said Phillip Stephens, GOP chairman in Robeson County, N.C., one of several rural counties in that swing state that shifted from supporting Barack Obama in 2012 to Trump in 2016. “We’re calling him ‘Teflon Trump.’ Nothing’s going to stick, because if anything, it’s getting more exciting than it was in 2016.”

This year, Stephens said, “We’re thinking landslide.”


Politico found that if you ask Republicans why Trump’s going to win, they generally offer explanations ranging from the hyper-optimistic (everything will be back to normal any day now and a happy back-at-work electorate will reward Trump for saving them), to the aggressively ignorant (all polls showing Biden ahead are fake, because they were dead wrong last time —well which they actually weren’t), to pure disinformation (Democrats are throwing away the election by calling for the abolition of police departments and confiscation of private property, beginning with guns).

But what’s more interesting is what Trump supporters really think, and why they appear so determined to project self-confidence, unlike their endlessly neurotic Democratic counterparts. After all, there is no established principle in politics that thinking you’ll win makes it more likely that you will win, beyond a minimal belief that it’s possible. And in fact, it’s very clear that in 2016, the assumption that Hillary Clinton had the election in the bag hurt her, perhaps fatally, since potential supporters felt free to stay at home, vote for a minor party, or even cast a “protest vote” for Trump.

So why are Trump-supporting Republicans so relentlessly upbeat, and dismissive of objective evidence that points in the direction of defeat? Here are five theories:

1. They’re drinking his own Kool-Aid
Trump supporters are by definition big fans of a man who never admits mistakes or weaknesses, expresses narcissistic, self-congratulatory hubris every other hour, and hates “losers” as much as Jesus Christ loved them. Perhaps they are simply following the leader, who appears to systematically block out any source of information that doesn’t tell him what he wants to hear.

2. They believe “enthusiasm” is the ball game
As is well known, Trump’s reelection strategy, and his behavior in office, have been heavily oriented towards “base mobilization,” to the extent of sometimes excluding any serious effort to identify or persuade swing voters, much less Democrats. To the extent that mobilization is facilitated by enthusiasm, getting the MAGA faithful to believe they are marching in a perpetual victory parade is presumably valuable. It’s possibly relevant that polls show a majority of Republicans are motivated by a desire to support Trump, while a majority of Democrats are more focused on beating Trump than on electing Biden. Trump voters want to know they are part of a historic reelection campaign that will take America another step closer to the paradise of the 1950s, not into some socialist nonwhite dystopia.

3. They want to “own the libs”

One bond Trump has with his supporters is in deeply enjoying the discomfort of their common enemies. They are aware that the vast majority of left-of-center Americans don’t simply dislike the president, but dislike him intensely. Many view the prospect of this strange “accidental president” serving another four years with genuine horror. So it’s great sport for Trump supporters to confront them with this possibility, raised to the level of certainty. It’s mass schadenfreude, with a dollop of Trump’s own signature cruelty.

[b[4. They truly despise the “elite” sources of adverse information[/b]
If you are convinced that polls are all “fake” and most of the media — including Fox News on occasion — just systematically lie, all to benefit Trump’s enemies, then it’s a short leap to assume that the “truth” they are hiding is MAGA-rific or even glorious. Similarly, once one is convinced that “real Americans” are in the president’s corner, then anything (like a bad poll or mockery of a self-destructive Trump video clip) emanating from sources that either “don’t get it” or are actively hostile to this country and its interests simply cannot be credited as “real.” Believing that Trump might lose, therefore, can become an anti-patriotic act, or a sign of being duped by contemptuous wrong-doers.

5. They are preparing to contest any defeat
The most troubling possibility is that Trump supporters understand the president is laying the groundwork for contesting a defeat, and want to help him do so. Here’s how I recently described Trump’s efforts to undermine, in advance, the legitimacy of the November election in case he happens to lose it:

Trump is now regularly claiming that voting by mail is inherently illegitimate, except for grudging exceptions for people who can’t make it to the polls. So, presumably, states that allow for no-excuse voting by mail in November are holding “substantially fraudulent” elections. That’s 34 states who do so by law (including battleground states Arizona, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin), 11 more that so far are waiving excuse requirements this pandemic year (including New Hampshire), and another that may be forced to do so by a lawsuit (Texas).


So in a very real sense, unless Trump backs off his claims that voting by mail means a “rigged election,” he’s letting us know that he and his supporters will be justified in challenging any adverse results in states that allow this terrible practice to take place.


Keep in mind that Trump went to a lot of trouble to claim he was robbed of a popular-vote majority in 2016 (thanks to “millions of illegal votes” for Hillary Clinton for which he offered not a shred of evidence), even though it didn’t ultimately matter. One possible rationale was to convince his followers Democrats always cheat, meaning their victories should prospectively be discounted or challenged. If on Election Night 2020, Donald Trump claims victory on the basis of early returns, is there any doubt his fans and media allies will join him in crying out “fraud!” to the high heavens should late mail ballots drift in and reverse the results? I don’t think so. And either consciously or unconsciously, some of them may be anticipating that fraught scenario already. To a significant number of the faithful, Trump is not just a president, but an embodiment of America, and even God’s Annointed. He can’t fail. He can only be failed.


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Brictoria
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22 Jun 2020, 1:40 am

For the same reason Hillary Clinton's supporters were certain she would win?


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22 Jun 2020, 1:47 am

Brictoria wrote:
For the same reason Hillary Clinton's supporters were certain she would win?


And his opponent is a literal dementia patient?


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Brictoria
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22 Jun 2020, 1:57 am

Wolfram87 wrote:
Brictoria wrote:
For the same reason Hillary Clinton's supporters were certain she would win?


And his opponent is a literal dementia patient?


Of course, some believe that we are waiting on Mr Biden to announce who the actual opponent will be (I undertsand the odds are in favor of female, PoC) :lol:


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22 Jun 2020, 2:00 am

Brictoria wrote:
Wolfram87 wrote:
Brictoria wrote:
For the same reason Hillary Clinton's supporters were certain she would win?


And his opponent is a literal dementia patient?


Of course, some believe that we are waiting on Mr Biden to announce who the actual opponent will be (I undertsand the odds are in favor of female, PoC) :lol:


That's the goss. :wink:


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22 Jun 2020, 2:20 am

I am outside the U.S so can only view things from afar, but there does seem to be quite an attitude from Trump fans right now that the election is already sown up. Surely they should remember the last election when some people were left with egg on their face for behaving like that?!



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22 Jun 2020, 2:28 am

Brictoria wrote:
Wolfram87 wrote:
Brictoria wrote:
For the same reason Hillary Clinton's supporters were certain she would win?


And his opponent is a literal dementia patient?


Of course, some believe that we are waiting on Mr Biden to announce who the actual opponent will be (I undertsand the odds are in favor of female, PoC) :lol:


I'm expecting Hillary donning blackface and coming out as trans-racial any day now...


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TheRobotLives
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22 Jun 2020, 4:22 am

Biden says he wants to raise taxes, and legalize all the illegal aliens on day one.

That should make some good negative ads to damage his poll numbers.


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22 Jun 2020, 4:33 am

We tend to switch republicans and democrats every 8 years on the dot. So I don’t see this being any different. I’m in no rush for another 8 years of democrat control.


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22 Jun 2020, 8:01 am

In Short the Reality Now Still is
A ‘Religious Cult’ is Sure THeiR
‘Trademark’ God Wants A Father
oF All Lies to Become Re-Elected
As Pre-Destination Arrives
As ‘They’ Ironically
Strive to
Self-Fulfill
A Revelation
Nightmare on
The Wrong Side
Of ‘Elm Street’ (Trivia
Note: i Was Raised on
Elm Street Named Freddy
Born On 6660 Too ‘Big’
to See Safe, hehe Could
Be an Omen Ironically
Too) Just in Case anyone
Doesn’t Believe Karma
Is Real The Good News is the
‘Others’
Aren’t
Fools the
Great Hope
Is the ‘Anti-Religious’
Will Save The Baby of Love
As God the ‘Love One’ Breathes
FReED
Again
As The Call
Of The Wild Wins
As Nature Always Will
Free In
Balance
Again
Trump
Is Just
A Disgruntled
Pebble MaKinG
Waves Cross A Pond
SinKinG
To the
Bottom
Now Karma Replies
Dark Horse Light Sees


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22 Jun 2020, 8:17 am

ASPartOfMe wrote:
Why Do Trump Supporters Act Like His Election Is Certain?
Likely for the same reason they act like black lives don't matter, that womens' reproductive organs belong to men, that any woman who resists a man's authority is a lesbian, that immigrants should go back where they came from, that the only 'good' Democrat is a dead Democrat, that Puritan morality should be taught in public schools, that any science in conflict with Biblical beliefs should be made illegal, that America is owned by whites only, that abortion should be outlawed even if pregnancy puts the life of the mother is at risk, that alcohol and tobacco use are okay but marijuana use is not, that being LGBT or Q is an abomination but cheating on your spouse is okay as long as you don't get caught...

They live in a dream world that mimics the ethics and morality of 1950s America that was dominated by white men.

Pathetic.


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22 Jun 2020, 8:20 am

Trump’s re-election is far from certain. To say the least.



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22 Jun 2020, 9:38 am



Just to Be Clear; Additionally,
Now, Trump's Supporters Aren't
DRinKinG the 'Kool-Aid'; They
Are Drinking the ORanGuTaN
FLaVoReD 'Tang' And They
Are Not Going to
The Moon;
Only to
A Place
of 'Lunacy' as
'Lifting The Veils
oF iGNorance' in Original
Greek Definition Actually
Is The Meaning of the Term
'Apocalypse' That is Instead
Now Defined As Destroying
All That is Great in Life As Love For ALL
Lifting the Veils oF iGNoRancE, Truth iN Light
As Love Will Not Keep Breathing Without Truth
As All
'THEiR'
Metaphors
For This God
of Love Otherwise
Naturally Dies at
The Hands oF APocalypse iN Ignorance
Of Truth in Light That Allows Love to Breathe
For Real;
Truly
An
Experience
That Relates
Essence DiViNE
too small for a 3 Letter
or 5 Letter Word Alone.
(Allah, Jesus, Trump, And God)
Both The F Word And The L Word
Are Greater Four Letter
Realities Now And
LusT
too
Even
Real
Nature We
BReATHE Best
This way As US;
But True Vehicles And
Vessels of Myths May
Still Hold LoVE iN Truth's LiGHT;
Here's the Truth Folks, If You Believe that
Religion, Politics, And Philosophy Are in Any
Way Ever Separated, You Just Don't See FuLLeR ReaLiTY;
Get Out And About And Yes Breathe What Other Folks See;
And Understand That Change Will Never Be Separated From ALL Three.
If One Cannot Understand This, Perhaps One Is
Missing the Fuller Human Story That Will Always
Be Our Realities as Classically Evolved Now at Least;
We Can Laugh at 'Religion' Now All We Like But For the
Last 3 Plus Years It has ruled this Country; Don't Be So
Foolish to Believe 'You' Know 'Better'; Organized Protests
Are One Way for 'the Other Side' to Develop A Religion that works too.
It's Already
WorKinG; the
Polls Are SHoWinG
The Proof of This New 'Left' Religion;
All It took Was A Brown Man to Be Slowly
Suffocated; Crucified in the Streets Again...
Oh, The
Irony
of the
Real Apocalypse;
When All Is Revealed; Truth iN LiGHT;
Lifting The Veils oF iGNorance Out of
DarK; Do Understand that If one only
BelieveS oNe, Two, or None of 'Those Three'
is Real; Together, We are Lost NoW From
HuMaN ReaLiTY Full Free AND LOVE FOR ALL.


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The_Walrus
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22 Jun 2020, 10:18 am

Wolfram87 wrote:
Brictoria wrote:
For the same reason Hillary Clinton's supporters were certain she would win?


And his opponent is a literal dementia patient?

:roll:

There is no evidence that Biden has dementia. He has a lifelong speech impediment but when he’s questioned he is very good at staying on topic and can really dive into the detail.



kraftiekortie
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22 Jun 2020, 11:40 am

I have a similar speech impediment to Biden’s.



Wolfram87
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22 Jun 2020, 12:03 pm

You are of course free to believe that, but a speech impediment does not cause the sort of things we've seen from Biden.


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