Abraham Lincoln

It Is Official: The Republican Party Has Become A Cult Around A Strong Arm Authoritarian Out To Destroy American Democracy!

The Republican National Convention began today during the daytime hours, and Donald Trump and Mike Pence were renominated for President and Vice President of the United States.

Donald Trump avoided tradition and spoke for an hour, ranting and raving against his “enemies”, reminding those who know history of Adolf Hitler at his Nuremberg rallies.

We are witnessing the Republican Party officeholders swearing their loyalty to a man who has lied 20,000 times in office; has promoted racism, nativism, misogyny, white supremacy; has become a friend of authoritarians and alienated democratic nations; has undermined the judiciary, intelligence agencies, the foreign policy apparatus, and attacked the news media as “the enemy of the people”; has bullied and attacked all of his critics incessantly; has undermined our environment and civil liberties; has refused to take strong action against the CoronaVirus Pandemic; has shown no sense of compassion, empathy, decency or dignity in any form; and a legion of others sins and shortcomings that has never been matched by any previous President in more than two centuries of American history!

The party of such Presidential luminaries as Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Dwight D. Eisenhower, Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush has been shamed by Donald Trump!

The party of such Congressional luminaries as Charles Sumner, Robert LaFollette, Sr., George Norris, Arthur Vandenberg, and Everett Dirksen has been embarrassed by the weak kneed refusal of today’s Republican members of Congress to show some backbone to Donald Trump!

Face the facts: the Republican Party has become a cult, and is unlikely to come back into respectability, even after Donald Trump leaves the scene, as he has done so much damage and harm, that the Republican Party name may very well go into oblivion!

Presidential Debates Are Worthless, Unless Donald Trump Agrees To Two Conditions: Taxes Revealed, And Fact Checker For Trump Lies!

There is no point to Joe Biden agreeing to debate with Donald Trump, unless Trump agrees to reveal his tax records, as Joe Biden has done, AND it is also agreed that there will be a fact checking team approved by both candidates to be hired by the non partisan Commission on Presidential Debates.

That team would report with ten minutes left in the debate any misleading statements, phony numbers, or outright lies uttered by either candidate.

Trump lies as he breathes, as Thomas Friedman of the New York Times said last month, and Biden should not allow that to go unanswered by a fact checking team at the debate.

Since Biden is comfortably ahead in all polls, he gains nothing by debates, and by refusing to debate, will infuriate Trump, who will go even more looney.

Trump knows he is losing, and Joe Biden should just continue to make public statements before small audiences with proper distancing. Biden is being helped by various Republican groups who are dedicated to Trump’s defeat as the only way to revive the party of Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, and Dwight D. Eisenhower.

Joe Biden has been right since January on the CoronaVirus Pandemic, and should make the effort to win as many states as possible, but the debates make no sense at this point, unless Trump agrees to the two conditions mentioned above, which will not occur!

Joe Biden Makes Himself Available Regularly On The Internet: New Method Of Campaigning For President

The Presidential campaign of 2020 for Joe Biden has begun in a distinguished manner. There were people wondering where he was, but he has answered by presenting his ideas and concerns on a daily basis now that we are just about five months to Election Day!

Joe Biden is on the internet just about every day with a video or interview, as campaigning person to person is not possible with the COVID-19 Pandemic raging across the globe, and just today, the horrid figure of 100,000 deaths in three months, an average of 900 a day, stares at us.

At the rate that this pandemic is expanding, and with the expectation that there will be a second wave, based on history and science, we can expect, sadly, that there will be 200,000 dead by the end of August, and 300,000 by Thanksgiving!

So Joe Biden must campaign in a new way, and he manages to express thoughts of concern, empathy, compassion, decency, and humanity, but that is nothing new for Joe Biden, as that is who he is!

Meanwhile, Donald Trump expresses none of the above traits, and disgusts more Americans every day, who rightfully blame him for the inadequate response to the pandemic. There is the belief at least one third to maybe one half of the deaths could have been averted if actions had been taken in January and February and early March, rather than waiting to mid to late March, when the virus was spreading widely!

Joe Biden gives us hope and a Presidential presence, even though he is not President, reminding us of Abraham Lincoln, Franklin D. Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy and Barack Obama in his ability to deal with a crisis, although not of his making.

From Election To Inauguration: Four Worrisome Times, And Now Again In 2020

In American history, we have witnessed four times when the period from the election to the inauguration has been a worrisome time.

The first time was 1860-1861, when Abraham Lincoln was facing the secession of the South, and likely civil war, and even the danger of assassination threats before he took office.

The second time was 1876-1877, when the popular vote went to Samuel J. Tilden, but the electoral vote went to Rutherford B. Hayes, decided by a special Electoral Commission, which resulted in the closest electoral vote imaginable, a one vote margin of electors.

The third time was 1932-1933, when Franklin D. Roosevelt faced a recalcitrant Herbert Hoover, who refused to cooperate with the President-Elect as the Great Depression worsened.

The fourth time was 2000-2001, when the electoral vote was decided by the Supreme Court, awarding Florida to George W. Bush over Al Gore, by the second closest electoral vote, only five electoral vote margin.

And now, in 2020, we have to fear that Donald Trump will refuse to concede the election, and will fight it in every possible way, if the electoral vote is contested. And even if it is an easy victory for Joe Biden, Trump might create a constitutional crisis, and attempt to declare martial law and suspend the Constitution. He also might attempt to start a war with China or Iran, in the midst of the CoronaVirus Pandemic.

So we have a lot to worry about as we move toward the Presidential Election of 2020!

The Empathy Of Clinton, George W. Bush, Obama, And Also Lincoln, TR, LBJ, And Carter, As Compared To Trump

One of the most important traits that any President should have, but not all do, is to have empathy, an understanding of the struggles and difficulties of people’s lives, and the ability to relate to the tragedies of others.

Donald Trump has not an ounce of empathy for anyone, as he is a total narcissist, and clearly does not care about others, only his own advancement financially, and to control others to his own benefit.

Trump does not lose sleep over the devastation wrought by the CoronaVirus Pandemic that could have been dealt with two months earlier, and made the tragedy far less deadly.

The three Presidents before him had empathy as, for example:

Bill Clinton at the time of the Oklahoma City Bombing in 1995.

George W. Bush after the attack on New York City on September 11, 2001.

Barack Obama and the Sandy Hook Elementary School Massacre in 2012 in Newtown, Connecticut.

Many other earlier Presidents also displayed empathy, with a few examples being

Abraham Lincoln mourning the loss of life at the time of the Battle of Gettysburg and the later Gettysburg Address in 1863.

Theodore Roosevelt demanding action on protection for workers and consumers with the protection of the Pure Food and Drug Act in 1906, after Publication of Upton Sinclair’s realistic novel, “The Jungle”, that same year.

Lyndon B. Johnson making a commitment to civil rights legislation and the War On Poverty despite his Southern heritage.

Jimmy Carter’s entire life of empathy, including his post Presidential activities even now at age 95.

Donald Trump Botched His Last Attempt To Show Concern For The American People, In His Atrocious Reaction To Covid-19 Pandemic!

Donald Trump, the extreme narcissist, and mentally very unstable, and more dangerous every day for the nation, botched his last attempt to show concern and empathy for the American people, by his atrocious reaction to the CoronaVirus Pandemic!

Any chance he had to redeem himself to the American people and his historic reputation is lost, as he has refused to promote contact tracing or testing, and is very willing to accept mass loss of life without any guilt or conscience!

All that matters to Donald Trump is to be reelected, with the thought that if somehow, through foreign collusion, voter suppression, or gerrymandering combination, he is reelected, the nightmare we are living through will become much worse!

This is not just about massive loss of life, but also the abuse of power by a reenergized President who will go further in destroying the Constitution and Bill of Rights, setting up a Fascist dictatorship that his Republican Party will abide by. This will be instead of promoting the principles enunciated by Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, and other historic Republicans of principle and common decency over the 166 years of the party’s history!

Once we lose our basic civil liberties and civil rights, how can we ever regain them? How can we protect the vulnerable among us, including the disabled, the elderly, the young, and racial and ethnic minorities, which will suffer more than the general population?

That is why, as stated in my History News Network article of April 29, the Election of 2020 is the most significant one since 1940, in that our whole way of life is in danger, as it was in the four previous elections discussed in the article—1860, 1864, 1932, and 1940!

Six Months To The Presidential Election Of 2020: A First Assessment

With six months and three days until the Presidential Election of 2020, it is time to make a first assessment of the upcoming election.

This author has just published an article on History News Network under my blog “Ronald L Feinman” stating that this upcoming election is the most important since 1940, and one of the five most significant elections in American history, along with 1860, 1864, 1932, and 1940.

Donald Trump is reported going totally off the rails on this, the 75th anniversary of the suicide of Adolf Hitler, and it gets one to think about what may yet happen, as Trump is falling behind Joe Biden in every imaginable poll nationally, and in the “swing” states, including the crucial state of Florida with its 29 electoral votes.

If Trump loses Florida, where many senior citizens retire and are dying in the midst of this CoronaVirus Pandemic, there is no practical way for him to win reelection.

With the pandemic which he is refusing to deal with rationally, only thinking about his election, and willing to endanger any crowd that might gather in Arizona or Ohio in coming weeks, and also wanting children back in school even if it undermines and threatens the lives of their parents and grandparents, Trump is clearly on the road to a massive defeat in November!

So, subject to change, here is my assessment of the upcoming election:

Joe Biden will win the 20 states that Hillary Clinton won:

All 6 New England states and add the second district of Maine, which went to Trump in 2016–33 electoral votes

Middle Atlantic States of New York, New Jersey, Maryland, Delaware and the District of Columbia, plus Virginia–72 electoral votes

Midwest States of Illinois and Minnesota–30 electoral votes

Mountain States of New Mexico, Colorado and Nevada–20 electoral votes

Pacific Coast States of California, Oregon, Washington State, and Hawaii–78 electoral votes

So the “base”, adding the second district of Maine to the total, is 233 electoral votes of 270 needed.

Adding to that are the crucial states that Hillary Clinton lost in the Midwest—Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania (really considered more Northeast but also considered in western section as Midwest)—46

That brings the electoral vote total to 279, enough to win the Presidency for Joe Biden.

However, the trend is strongly in favor of other states turning “Blue”, with the Second Great Depression upon us, along with the CoronaVirus Pandemic, and the reality that Trump policies have alienated many groups:

Senior Citizens

Suburban Women

College Educated

Lower and Middle Income Voters

Racial Minorities (African Americans, Latino Americans, Asian Americans)

Jews, Social Justice Catholics, Mainline Protestants

Young People Under 35

Independents

Moderate Republicans

Conservative Intellectuals

Of course, one is not saying that all of these groups will vote “Blue”, but it seems highly likely enough will vote that way and cause a smashing defeat for Donald Trump!

So what other states seem likely to go Democratic, in some cases, by small margins?

In order as follows:

Arizona–11 electoral votes

North Carolina–15 electoral votes

Florida–29 electoral votes

Nebraska–2nd Congressional District–1 electoral vote

Ohio–18 electoral votes

Georgia–16 electoral votes

Iowa–6 electoral votes

Montana–3 electoral votes

Kansas–6 electoral votes

Texas–38 electoral votes

So my estimate at this time, six months before the election, is a maximum of 32 states and DC for Biden and 18 for Trump, and 422 electoral votes to 116 for Trump.

The 116 electoral votes for Trump in 18 states would be:

West Virginia 5

Kentucky 8

South Carolina 9

Alabama 9

Mississippi 6

Louisiana 8

Arkansas 6

Tennessee 11

Missouri 10

Indiana 11

North Dakota 3

South Dakota 3

Nebraska 4 (not including 2nd District)

Oklahoma 7

Utah 6

Wyoming 3

Idaho 4

Alaska 3

But actually, Missouri (10) and Indiana (11) could, by earlier history, surprise, and also vote against Trump and support Biden by small margins, meaning there could be 34 states and a grand total of 443 to 95 in the Electoral College for the Democrats!

Remember that Indiana voted for Barack Obama in 2008, and Missouri was always with the winner since 1900, except in 1956, 2008 (both by small margins of about 4,000 votes) and 2012 when the margin was larger for the defeated candidate, Mitt Romney!

So the exact parameters of the Donald Trump defeat are not final, but this would seem to be the maximum, as another nearly 4 million Americans today filed for unemployment, a total of about 30 million, one out of five workers in the nation, approximately, which would mean a 20 percent unemployment rate, and growing.

If it goes over 25 percent in coming weeks, it will be worse than even the Great Depression of the 1930s, and the American people soundly defeated Herbert Hoover in 1932, and elected Franklin D. Roosevelt!

And realize that the average family size can be considered probably a family of four although there are many households of fewer than four, but if one considers that as a statistic, that means one out of three people directly are affected by unemployment, an astounding 33-35 percent rate, unimaginable and horrific!

The next President will have a challenge on the level of FDR and Abraham Lincoln!


Crucial Vice Presidential Choices In American History, Good And Bad

As Joe Biden decides soon who will be his Vice Presidential running mate, this is a good time to look at crucial Vice Presidential choices in American history, both good and bad.

There is a myth that the Vice Presidential choice does not matter, but it most certainly does.

Abraham Lincoln, in order to help his reelection chances in 1864, dropped Vice President Hannibal Hamlin in favor of Andrew Johnson. Johnson would go on to be the worst blunder of Lincoln, as he succeeded Lincoln after only six weeks in office, divided the country, and was impeached.

William McKinley lost his Vice President, Garret Hobart, in 1899, due to heart disease. If Hobart had not died, he would have become President in 1901, but instead, it was Theodore Roosevelt, who transformed the office of the Presidency.

Franklin D. Roosevelt dropped third term Vice President Henry A. Wallace in 1944 in favor of Harry Truman, who succeeded him after 82 days as Vice President, and most scholars believe Wallace would have been a terrible choice to be President.

John F. Kennedy could not have won in 1960 without Lyndon B. Johnson, who would carry along to success the domestic goals of JFK, and expand beyond it in the “Great Society” programs in the mid 1960s.

Jimmy Carter had a perfect match for Vice President in Walter Mondale, who became the most active and engaged Vice President, practically a co-President.

Ronald Reagan had no foreign policy experience, and George H. W. Bush was a great asset to him in the 1980s.

Bush made a terrible choice in Dan Quayle as his Vice President, and made everyone pray for his health when he had an “atrial fibrillation” in office.

Bill Clinton was fortunate to have Al Gore as his VP, as Gore helped to direct Clinton on the environment, an issue Clinton had performed poorly as Arkansas Governor.

George W. Bush had a smart, intelligent, capable Vice President in Dick Cheney, except for the reality that he “ran the show” in the first term, and pushed us into unwise wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and managed to make millions of personal wealth from Halliburton.

He is often called the most powerful Vice President in American history, in the sense of his impact and powerful influence in policy under Bush, although somewhat less so in the second term, as Bush separated himself to some extent from Cheney.

The Barack Obama-Joe Biden “Bromance” was extremely close and influential, only matched by the Carter-Mondale partnership.

The relationship between Donald Trump and Mike Pence has been one of total sycophancy by Pence, as he hopes to become President at some point in the future. The evangelical Christian Right has been a major factor in the total degradation, and lack of ethics and morals of the Trump Presidency.

So for good or for bad, the Vice Presidency has made a difference!

“Red” States Are Suicidal In Thinking They Are “Safe” Due To State Lines, As If CoronaVirus Pandemic Does Not Cross Borders!

We have now seen about 44,000 people die from the CoronaVirus Pandemic, increasing more than 2,000 per day.

Twenty thousand of these deaths are in the Tri State Area of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut.

But there are even more deaths in the other 47 states, and not just the coastlines, meaning not only the Pacific Coast and Atlantic Coast.

The virus has hit everywhere, although not equally, but there is no certainty or security that numbers will not grow dramatically, in the so called “Flyover States”.

And yet, the “Red States”, the Republican states of the “hinterland” are living in a delusion that they can conveniently “open up” in the next few days or week, particularly in the Southern states of Georgia, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas, and Florida planning to join this “suicide mission” in effect soon, as well!

These states, which tend to be highly religious, as compared to most of the nation, and are so oriented toward Pro Life on the issue of abortion, seem ready to sacrifice loss of life because the capitalist system demands opening up, even if workers are endangering their own lives, and that of their families!

And we have people who cannot tolerate delaying haircuts, having their nails done, going bowling, and a myriad of other activities, and are not concerned that they are endangering their own family members and friends, and strangers too, along with themselves, because they are so spoiled and only think of “Me, Myself, and I”!

We are losing an American life every 32 seconds right now, and have lost more than the top five European nations combined, but profit and greed still rule in Republican states, as if the virus does not cross state lines!

Within the next two weeks if not sooner, we will have lost more Americans in two months than all of the years of the Vietnam War–58,000–which took 12 years, not 60 days!

When will Republicans and Southerners value life over profits? This is what Donald Trump has done to the party of Lincoln, TR, Ike, Reagan and H. W. Bush, a total disgrace!

Six And A Half Months To Most Crucial Presidential Election Since 1940

We are facing this November the fifth most crucial Presidential election in American history.

Every Presidential election matters, of course, and in the midst of each campaign, there are those who will think it is the most important event ever to occur.

But in reality, the number of times that an election has been truly “crucial” is limited to what this author and blogger believes are only a few times.

Those few elections that have been crucial to the extreme would include, chronologically the following:

Election of 1860, a four way race, with the Civil War seen as on the horizon, and Abraham Lincoln winning with only 39.8 percent of the vote, over Stephen Douglas, John C. Breckinridge, and John Bell.

Election of 1864, in which Lincoln defeated former General George McClellan, at a crucial time in the Civil War.

Election of 1932, in which the nation was at its lowest economic point in history, with the failure of Herbert Hoover, and the alternative of Franklin D. Roosevelt and his New Deal.

Election of 1940, when America faced the danger of Fascism in the world, but isolationism reigned, and Franklin D. Roosevelt faced a businessman with no government experience, Wendell Willkie, as the world was engaged in World War II.

Now, in 2020, we face a CoronaVirus Pandemic; a collapsed economy worse than any time since the Great Depression; and a crazed, dangerous President who should have been removed from office for abuse of power, and instead is, effectively, taking the nation over the brink of the cliff that it is facing at this time!

So just as Abraham Lincoln and Franklin D. Roosevelt came to the rescue, each of them twice, now Joe Biden and his female running mate face the challenge of the greatest crisis in 80 years, and we have to hope he can gather the strength, courage, and decisiveness of Lincoln, FDR, and other great Presidents, including Harry Truman, John F. Kennedy, and Barack Obama in difficult moments in their Presidencies!