I do not believe this was his intention, but Jonathan Chait could not have written a more effective argument for re-electing Donald Trump if Chait actually did switch sides. This is how you not only fail to win over Trump voters, but make them more determined than ever to vote for Trump again. You might even manage to coax a few former #NeverTrump Republicans onto the Trump Train.
Chait starts his “argument” with insults:
One might entertain the conclusion that no combination of facts and logic can dislodge the Republican base from its tribal loyalties.
Chait shows he is not interested in making an argument. He is interested in moral preening and virtue signaling. He is interested in declaring his own moral and intellectual superiority over Republican voters. The assumption here is there are no facts and logic that would persuade Republicans to support Trump. All of that, of course, is on the Democratic side. He is not presenting facts. He is tossing insults.
Of the #NeverTrump Republicans in 2016, Chait writes:
But none of them later supported the only candidate who could have defeated Trump.
Does he seriously think there were no anti-Trump Republicans who were appalled by both candidates? Does he not recognize that or understand why Hillary Clinton was toxic to many Republicans? I personally know a number of people who were not fans of Trump, but voted for him anyway because they were afraid of what a Hillary Clinton presidency would mean for religious liberty, abortion, taxes and gun rights. Better to take a chance on Trump, they told me, than to elect a thoroughly corrupt shrew who they knew would be governing from the hard left from the moment she took the oath of office.
Speaking of tribal loyalties, Chait shows his own tribalism with a dismissal and fundamental misunderstanding of Republican policies. Chait has no desire to actually understand these policies, so he can look in the mirror if he wants to find someone who is profoundly anti-intellectual:
They fervently support ideas, like reducing taxes for the rich and allowing industry to pollute the atmosphere for free
Yes, Republicans support tax cuts. There are plenty of sound policy reasons for lower taxes, which I have written about many times before. That’s not the point, though. The point is that Chait has no interest in arguing or seriously examining tax policy. He is interested in hos own moral superiority.
Furthermore, it is not and has never been the position of the Republican Party or Republican leaders in Congress to allow unchecked pollution. Chait is either being dishonest or he simply does not understand the issue. (It is almost certainly the former, which is not good for a so-called “journalist.”) The issue is not allowing or not allowing pollution. The issue is how far the policy should go, which policies are effective, and what economic trade-offs we are willing to make.
Again, Chait is uninterested in actually examining Republicans’ positions on issues or why Republicans would support candidates Chait dislikes. He is being bigoted.
I did not vote for Donald Trump. I do not regret or apologize for that decision. I do support Trump’s policies and if the 2020 general election were held today I would vote for Trump. That is in no small part thanks to arrogant snobs like Jonathan Chait and their contempt for people like me.