He’s the one to beat. But is he the one to win?

Photo © 2016 Paul L. Gleiser

Paul GleiserHe's the one to beat. But is he the one to win?

The Washington Examiner’s Byron York wrote an insightful column at Townhall.com Tuesday.

In that column, he cites the same late August Wall Street Journal poll that I recently cited in which Donald Trump holds a 59 to 13 lead over Ron DeSantis. That 46-point lead is double that of the same poll last April. (Articles may be behind a paywall.)

If you believe this  — and every other — national poll, former president Donald Trump appears to be unbeatable for the 2024 Republican nomination.

The question thus begs, is that a good thing if the goal is to defeat Joe Biden (or some other Democrat to be named later) in the general election a year from this November?

Writing in his column, Byron York raises the same concerns that I have been raising. As impressive as Trump’s numbers are among Republican primary voters, the general election poses a much more daunting challenge.

For purposes of this discussion let me stipulate that the four prosecutions that Donald Trump now faces constitute the classic definition of the word inequity. These prosecutions are political. Evidence to support that stipulation lies in the answer to this question: Would any prominent Democrat, or nearly anyone else not named ‘Trump,’ be indicted on the same set of facts?

The honest answer is, ‘unlikely.’ All four indictments rely on stretching the law to suit the agendas of avowedly partisan prosecutors – two of whom attained election to office in deep blue precincts on the very promise of prosecuting Donald Trump. All four indictments constitute an affront to the ideals of a nation founded on the rule of law.

But that doesn’t make them go away. And there lies the challenge for Donald Trump. The first of his four trials begins on March 4 in Washington, D.C. Twenty one days later, his trial on charges in New York City begins. A bit more than six weeks after that, he faces trial in federal court in Florida. Somewhere in there, a fourth trial date will be set in Fulton County, Georgia.

Such defines Trump’s spring and summer calendar.

All these court battles – together with others both civil and criminal that likely will follow, will drain Trump of money, and more critically, time, just when he will need both in abundance. And yet, of even greater concern, the chances of him being acquitted on 91 felony counts spread across four jurisdictions are close to zero.

If he hopes to regain the presidency, Trump must go three for five for the electoral votes from blue-leaning Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Michigan, Nevada and Georgia. A national poll of likely GOP voters is close to meaningless in that context.

What is meaningful is a recent CNN poll that shows a judicially unencumbered Nikki Haley beating Joe Biden 49 to 43, making her the only Republican to poll above the margin of error against Biden.

I’ve said it before. Trump was the best president since Ronald Reagan. The question now is, given what we know and what is likely to come, is he the best candidate for 2024?

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Paul Gleiser

Paul L. Gleiser is president of ATW Media, LLC, licensee of radio stations KTBB 97.5 FM/AM600, 92.1 The TEAM FM in Tyler-Longview, Texas.

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16 Responses

  1. Buddy Saunders says:

    That you have never been a Trump fan shines bright and clear in your column this week. I know you to be a good man, but you are aligned with elites in finding reasons why Trump will fail, rather than looking at the reasons he will win. In the last presidential election, which WAS stolen, Trump received many more millions of votes than any past RINO Republican presidential candidates, all losers and liars. Given the chance, million more will vote for Donald Trump in 2024.

    If the Republican Party sits on its hands and allows Trump’s presidential bid to be blocked by the Democrats, and you and they put forward a shill as the Republican candidate, I damn sure will not vote for that candidate.

    • Paul Gleiser says:

      Buddy, never been a Trump fan? How can you say that? You’re a regular reader of this column. How many times in his four years did I stand up in support of him against the hail of unfair, incorrect and scurrilous criticism coming at him from every quarter? Type “Donald Trump” into the search bar on this site and go back and read the columns.

      Trump had a fantastically good presidency. I dare say even better than that of my hero Ronald Reagan.

      But there is so much hung around his neck now that I fear that he will be so burdened that he won’t be able to effectively fight. It is categorically wrong that so much is hung around his neck. But that doesn’t make it go away.

      We cannot lose 2024. A loss in 2024 very possibly gets us a President Kamala Harris. Unthinkable.

      My problem is not with Donald Trump. I admire the hell out of Donald Trump. Yes, I’d sand off some rough edges that I believe serve to get in his way. But with that said, I like the fact that he will, as a guy at the New Hampshire Primary said to me, “Say on TV what I yell AT my TV.”

      My problem is with the circumstances that now surround him and my fear that those circumstances will have sufficient effect ON THE MARGINS in the critical five states so as to throw the election to the Dems.

      I always appreciate your comments, Buddy.

    • Karen says:

      Gotta salute you, also.
      Yes, we are in serious trouble with usurpers inhabiting the oval.
      They know that we know they did not win the election.
      They have tasted having the oval this long, and I suspect are capable of a lot more than this dang mRNA fake “vaccine.”

  2. Peter Fasanello says:

    As the C.P.U.S.A now controls the necessary agencies to control the elections,I am very concerned that we have seen the end of free and fair elections

  3. C M Solomon says:

    How can anyone believe that any demonstrably weak Republican candidate other than Trump can defeat the Marxist/Commie radical Democrat idol of the day is beyond me when the 2020 election was stolen by outright criminal activity from a well prepared set of fraudulent procedures, leaving the legitimate winner (Trump) alone with NO serious movement by the fearful and weak Republican establishment who refused to expose the fraud and make life miserable for the Marxists as a consequence. The never Trumper leaders of the Republican Party slinked away with the mantle of defeat around their neck by choice. Who wants to support such empty suits?

    Furthermore, what realistic Independent or Republican (non-Democrat) voter would ever believe a CNN poll that showed a Republican victory could be achieved with a support greater than what Trump now enjoys before Election Day, sorry, I mean to say, a Democrat contrived election “season”. The truth is that every effort will be made by the Left to get the MAGA voter to abandon Trump with the false hope, based on fantasy, that a compromised RINO (kinder and gentler, non-indicted) candidate could win against a far Left, radical Democrat. Notice how the Leftist media and their pollsters never demonize the corrupt, criminal, and treasonous members of the Commiecrat establishment that makes Trump look like an angel by contrast.

  4. Richard Anderson says:

    Yes, the amount of pile on by “corrupt bad actors” within our own government is large. But the voice of WE THE PEOPLE.. GOOD PEOPLE of GOOD FAITH is LARGER and will win out. We will win because we must because our Constitutional Republic is in grave JEOPARDY.

    The very fact that our own DOJ et.al. “created bureaucratic agencies” have become weaponized against any and all who support President Trump is EXACTLY the reason he must be the nominee, and the reason he will win vs. “the other side.” The TRUTH is getting out lightning fast about the democrat leftists, such as Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, Hillary Clinton, Michelle Obama, Gavin Newsom, or whoever one might name on the anti-America as Founded 1776 side. The five named have ALL been BAD for AMERICA, and the public is ever so increasing aware of that fact. No, not a single one of “those” gives a FLYING HOOT about everyday American Citizens or is genuinely concerned about our concerns!!! Never forget, Michelle Obama said “she” has NEVER been proud of the United States of America. Such a “person” must never be president. I say if you’re not proud of the U.S.A.- our Constitutional Republic founded under God, then “GET OUT!” I love AMERICA and it’s despicable to me when someone says they don’t.

    Nikki Haley is a nonstarter for the Republican nominee in my view, as she is not well liked and her position on Ukraine is wrong as is her own history of how she handled the Confederate flag issue when she was governor of South Carolina. The endless sending of American taxpayer dollars flowing into Ukraine and pushing the U.S.A. and the Russian Federation closer to a WWIII confrontation must end. It’s asinine policy of the highest order.
    Ms. Haley and her own debacle regarding the Confederate flag in South Carolina when governor is seen by many, to be on par with the tearing down of statues of America’s heritage and history. History is history, it’s not a matter of liking or disliking, but is to be learned from, not destroyed and hidden away.

    Because of these two issues, she has alienated millions of voters who will be needed for Republicans to win in 2024. Her very unlikely nomination would be a disaster. She is not right for the task.

    Conversely, Kari Lake, and Kristi Noem do have the necessary dynamism of leadership to be president.. but after a Trump 2024 victory.

    DJT will be the Republican nominee, and he will beat Biden, or whoever ultimately runs on “the other side.”

  5. Linda E. Montrose says:

    I have one thing to say about this and that is ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS. My whole life candidates have promised to do this and that but FAILED miserably. Here comes Donald John Trump and I was very skeptical at first, but he finally won me over. Why? Because in the first place you don’t get where Trump is by being a liar. In order to make good you must deliver or you go under. Given what we have been given in the past to vote for, I chose Donald John Trump and it was the RIGHT choice. Why? As I said in the beginning, ACTIONS SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS. He repeatedly told us what he was going to do and most he carried out given what the left gave him, blocking him at every turn and are STILL at it.
    President Trump is the RIGHT person for this time because NO ONE in the Republican field can hold a candle to him. Just like when Secretariat clinched the Triple Crown with an astounding 31 lengths ahead of the rest of the field, I feel President can show us what he is really made of just as Secretariat did.

  6. Clifton Mire Jr says:

    Many years ago when Obama was running for President the first time my wife and I went to hear Dr. Walter Williams speak at UT Tyler. Dr. Williams was asked if he thought Obama would be the next president and his answer was, yes. Dr. Williams said Blacks will vote for Obama, Gays will vote for Obama, Jews will vote for Obama, Hispanics will vote for Obama and Union Workers will vote for Obama. Very little has changed since to make this any different to help Trump, in fact its worse than when Trump ran the first time. Since Roe vs Wade has been over turned, women who would have voted Republican will now vote Democrat. I think the mass mailing of ballots will still be in place and I don’t think Trump can win. I will vote for who ever the Republicans put up, but its time to put pride aside and get better candidates on the ballot.

    • C M Solomon says:

      The “art of the steal” as perfected by the radical Commiecrats will guarantee a Marxist election victory UNTIL the Republican Party flushes its leadership that plays “patty cake” with the Leftist tyrannical opposition. This worthless RINO leadership must be replaced as we reject their own stupid and foolish habit of selling their souls to the Devil in exchange for membership in good standing with the Washington élite for their own selfish enrichment. These RINOs DO NOT represent the patriotic American citizen as they devolve our Nation into a Marxist Banana Republic (hell hole) run by their partners in the Oligarchy and the Administrative (Deep) State.

    • Buddy Saunders says:

      What better candidate is there than Donald Trump? There is none. He has never stopped fighting for us. We must never stop fighting for him!

  7. Darrell Durham says:

    Paul, I have been a faithful follower for years. I miss hearing your comments on FOX51. I share your apprehension and appreciation concerning Trump. However, I am also concerned about the alternatives should he not win. The Democrats are trying to make sure Kennedy isn’t on the ballot either, which is a whole OTHER set of problems for the country.
    The founding fathers never meant for politicians to get rich. Maybe if they didn’t get paid they may actually serve the people better! Money makes Washington and public service attractive to lifetime service, thus leading to corruption and manipulation. Trump donated his entire salary and refused to accept campaign contributions directly, saying he “didn’t want to OWE anyone!” He really does love this country and I believe can help us save it. I’m not as confident in the others.
    As for electability, the tide is shifting towards Trump in many unlikely areas. He famously asked voters “what do you have to lose?” in 2016 and received some votes. Now it is blatantly obvious what we have to lose.

    • Paul Gleiser says:

      Darrell, thank you for the kind words and for your years of following this column. Just an FYI, my commentaries air on KFKX – FOX 51 every Tuesday and Thursday evening near the end of their 9:00 p.m. newscast.

      • Darrell Durham says:

        Unfortunately, my cable provider doesn’t carry that channel and an antenna won’t pick it up! Again, it’s ALL about the Benjamin’s!

  8. Karen says:

    Yes, Trump remains the best candidate for the election and the four year job.

    Haley is not going to win the election except by default since Joe is such a horrible president that anyone should be able to beat him.

    Were Trump not chosen as the GOP candidate, millions are likely to write his name in. I sure will, if such a thing occurs.

    The most daunting thing of this coming election is attempting to have an honest election that does not have massive cheating, per evidence of the documentary “2000 Mules!”

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