Conservative columnist George Will lays out Democrats' best best to beat Trump in 2020

Conservative columnist George Will lays out Democrats' best best to beat Trump in 2020
Images via Wikimedia Commons

Along with the late William F. Buckley, George Will reigned supreme for many years as the United States’ preeminent right-wing journalist. Will was Mr. Conservative, often butting heads with liberals and progressives on Sunday morning news programs. But in the Trump era, the 77-year-old columnist has often found himself commiserating with the left over Donald Trump’s presidency. Will clearly doesn’t want to see Trump reelected in 2020, and in his latest Washington Post column, he theorizes that Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota might be the best one to prevent that from happening.

Trump opens the column by bashing Beto O’Rourke, the El Paso Democrat who, shockingly, lost to Sen. Ted Cruz by a mere 3% in the 2018 Texas Senate race. O’Rourke has been widely praised for coming within striking distance of an incumbent GOP senator in a red state. But Will isn’t impressed. Dismissing O’Rourke as a “skateboarding man-child” who chose to “live-stream a recent dental appointment,” Will asserts, “When Democrats are done flirting with such insipidity, their wandering attentions can flit to a contrastingly serious candidacy, coming soon from Minnesota.”

Taking a poke at feminism, Will writes that Klobuchar “satisfies the 2020 Chromosome Criterion” of the Democratic Party and goes on to explain why he believes she could defeat Trump and become the United States’ first female president. Klobuchar, Will observes, “is from a state contiguous with Iowa, whose caucuses might, or might not, be as big a deal in 2020 as they have been since Jimmy Carter’s 1976 success in them propelled him toward the presidency.”

The conservative writer (who left the GOP after many years because of his disdain for Trump’s presidency) points out that although Minnesota is a blue state that “has voted Democratic in 11 consecutive presidential elections,” its “blueness has been fading.”

“Barack Obama defeated Mitt Romney by eight percentage points in 2012,” Will notes. “But four years later, Hillary Clinton defeated Trump by just 1.5 points.”

Klobuchar, Will stresses, is “liberal enough to soothe other liberals without annoying everyone else.” And although his column never mentions Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez by name, Will seems to be thinking of the unapologetically liberal/progressive Queens/Bronx congresswoman and Bernie Sanders protégée when he writes, “As the bidding war for the affection of the Democratic left spirals into inanity—“abolish ICE!,” “70% marginal tax rate!,” “impeach the president!,” “pack the Supreme Court!,” “Medicare-for-all!,” “free college!,” “free other stuff!”—Klobuchar is the potential top-tier candidate most apt to resist forfeiting the general election while winning the nomination.”

Will concludes his column by emphasizing that Klobuchar would be a strong candidate not only because of policy, but because of her midwestern “temperament.”

“Klobuchar laughs easily and often,” Will observes. “If the nation wants an angry president, it can pick from the many seething Democratic aspirants, or it can keep the president it has. If, however, it would like someone to lead a fatigued nation in a long exhale, it can pick a Minnesotan, at last.”


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