Trump Is Over, But That’s Not Necessarily Good for Biden’s Democrats

A small caveat to start: the author of these lines was totally wrong about today’s topic once before. After the storming of the Capitol in January 2021, he wrote that that was the last straw and Donald Trump was finally discredited, with no chance to continue his political career. Well, at first it turned out differently, but at second glance, it is as journalists thought it would be. And so, the midterms brought anxious waiting, and everyone worried this week that a “red tsunami” would rush over America and Trump would be the big winner in the background.

Trump quickly got back on his feet again after the storming of the Capitol. All the lies about the election being stolen, the constant agitation, all the scandals and lawsuits had no effect on the Grand Old Party’s loyalty to and reliance on its ex-president. In short, the Republican Party seemed committed to letting “The Donald” turn them into a rather absurd sect, a cult of personality.

But now, the predicted landslide victory by Republicans is nowhere to be seen. U.S. President Joe Biden and his Democrats can count the elections for the Senate and House of Representatives as a victory, despite some losses. Trump is, in the eyes of many, the big loser. Within the Republican Party, the grumbling is getting noticeably louder. America’s conservatives are now doubting whether Trump is the right candidate for the presidential election in 2024.

It would be completely understandable if you, the reader, mistrusted these lines because of the earlier episode mentioned above. Still, it is worth voicing the same prediction now: after these midterm elections, that’s it for Donald Trump. He will not become president again.

Unlike after his lost election in 2020 and the storming of the Capitol a few months later, Trump faces a different kind of problem now, one that is more difficult for him: He now has a very serious challenger in the Republican Party. On Tuesday, the spotlight was on Ron DeSantis, the hardline, right-wing governor of Florida whom Trump failed to campaign for. Perhaps because he is characterized as “Trump with a brain,” probably because Trump is getting wind of threats from within his own ranks. DeSantis brought the landslide victory that Trump wanted for “his” candidates and for his own political future, defeating his Democratic opponent by 20 percentage points.

DeSantis opposes teaching about racism in schools; he is against homosexual and queer people, coronavirus restrictions, and the “gender madness.” DeSantis, like Trump, is a Republican warrior in the American culture wars. But DeSantis never propagated Trump’s lies about the 2020 election being stolen.

All that is bad news for Trump — and good news for the state of American democracy. But at the same time, it does not bode well for the Democrats. If DeSantis does indeed throw his hat into the ring and wants to become the next U.S. president in two years’ time, the Republicans would have a huge advantage over the Democrats. DeSantis is 44 years old; Biden is 79. And for Democrats, no star is visible on the horizon like the one the Republicans now have in their man from Florida.

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