By Lord Ashcroft
This piece was initially published at TIME.com
If in November 2020 we are looking back on how Donald J. Trump came to be re-elected as President of the United States, those undergoing a second round of horror and dismay will find themselves reflecting on how seriously, and how often, they underestimated their foe.
The left has history when it comes to looking down on, and therefore underrating, its opponents. Ronald Reagan was derided as a genial but bumbling movie actor but was elected twice to govern both his state and his country. As was George W. Bush, who seemed to inspire a kind of hysterical contempt in his adversaries: Haha, he’s so stupid. He says words like “misunderestimate.” Oh, he’s beaten us. Again.
Donald Trump, by the same token, was surely too erratic and offensive and vulgar and narcissistic and unqualified to get his party’s nomination, let alone run an effective campaign. Let alone win.
You might think that the anti-Trumpists would have begun to learn from this long series of events, but apparently not (more…)