Biden can win ‘in a landslide’ if he plays his cards right: Veteran conservative columnist

Biden can win ‘in a landslide’ if he plays his cards right: Veteran conservative columnist
Credit: Gage Skidmore

As right-wing as Mona Charen is, the veteran conservative journalist/author is no fan of President Donald Trump. In fact, Charen is openly supporting former Vice President Joe Biden in this year’s presidential election. And in an article for the conservative website The Bulwark, Charen expresses her confidence that Biden can defeat Trump by a “landslide” if he plays his cards right.

The 63-year-old Charen — author of books like “Useful Idiots: How Liberals Got it Wrong in the Cold War and Still Blame America First” and “Do-Gooders: How Liberals Hurt Those They Claim to Help (and the Rest of Us)” — writes, “It seems that nobody wants to predict the November 3 election — not the staunchest partisans and particularly not the professional prognosticators…. What the heck, I predict that Joe Biden will win in a landslide. I know, I know, there are all those Trump flotillas out there. And no one knows how the virus will affect turnout. And there could be ‘shy Trump voters’ who will surge to the polls on Election Day. And the country is so polarized that the era of landslide victories is over. And remember what happened in 2016! Fine. Most of that could be true, and Biden could still win in a landslide.”

The conservative pundit goes on to say that although “there is no historical analog to 2020…. the contest that most resembles it, I submit, is 1980.” And she argues that Biden could enjoy a 1980-like “landslide” if he performs well in the forthcoming presidential debates. But a key difference between 2020 and 1980, according to Charen, is that in 2020, voters are “even less satisfied with the incumbent than they were in 1980.” That year, former California Gov. Ronald Reagan won a whopping 489 electoral votes, while incumbent Democratic President Jimmy Carter won only 49. In the popular vote, Reagan won by 9%.

“Trump has trailed Biden consistently since Biden emerged as the Democratic frontrunner and later, the nominee,” Charen writes. “As in 1980, the country is beset by troubles — a pandemic, a severe recession and racial strife. And unlike Carter, Trump has never enjoyed majority support. The electorate is poised to fire the president. The one remaining test they need is to see Biden pass is debate.”

Although Biden can be gaffe-prone in speeches, former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and other Republicans have been warning Trump that Biden can be a skillful debater.

“Assuming that Biden handles himself during the debates only as well as he managed the one-on-one debate with Bernie Sanders, he will be fine, because people have already decided they want to fire Trump,” Charen argues. “They just want to be sure that Biden is competent. Should he have some zingers in his back pocket? Absolutely. Give the commentators what they want. But the most important task is to be well-informed, under control and non-scary. Likable is nice too. And that comes naturally to Biden…. If Biden can turn in three solid debates — or even just two — he will win the election in a landslide.”

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