Thursday, August 09, 2018

Why The Media Must Continue to Report of Trump's Misogyny and Racism

Two Trump supporters at a Trump rally in Ohio last weekend.

At times I feel like I spend a disproportionate number of posts on the daily outrages, homophobia, racism and general inhumanity of the Trump/Pence regime.  Thankfully, a column in the New York Times makes the argument that relentless reporting on the ugliness of Trump/Pence is critical and needs to continue full bore in the lead up to the 2018 midterm elections and beyond.  The reason?  Such coverage is crucial because it is eroding the ability of some independents and the remaining moderate Republicans to continue to hold their revulsion for Trump in check and, just maybe, will help insure a blue wave in November. Personally, I have long argued that moral, decent people cannot support Trump - or Pence.  Morality and decency on the one hand and Trump's lies, racism,homophobia, and moral bankruptcy on the other hand are mutually exclusive.  Slowly, some Republicans are belatedly coming to this realization.  Here are column highlights:

Some healthy soul searching is taking place in newsrooms across the country these days over whether the mainstream media should be covering President Trump’s every tweet and rally. My answer: Absolutely! It’s the right thing for us to do professionally, and, as last night’s election results indicated, it’s the right thing to do politically if you want to see a check on Donald Trump’s power.
It appears that it’s the toxic lying, bullying and unpresidential behaviors that Trump exhibits most in his rallies and tweets — which we in the media so incessantly cover — that is turning off the very moderate, best-educated Republicans and suburban women that Trump will need to hold the G.O.P. majority in the House, let alone get re-elected. So bring on the coverage.
[T]he latest RealClearPolitics average of polls shows Trump having a personal approval rating of only 43 percent, with 53 percent disapproving of his performance. And in a special election in Ohio held on Tuesday, the G.O.P. House candidate — whom Trump and the entire Republican establishment went to bat for — is barely ahead of his Democratic rival in a district that has not sent a Democrat to Congress in more than three decades.
That does not speak well for Trump or his midterm prospects, but it does for the American people and for thinking Republicans. It turns out there is still a cohort of Republicans who have not sold their souls to Trump the way virtually every one of their elected representatives in Washington has done.
It turns out that there are thinking Republicans for whom character, decency and truth-telling still matter in a president. It turns out that there are thinking Republicans who have watched Trump’s twitter rants, his disturbed performance at Helsinki and the unrestrained bile that he emits at his rallies — and the blind, ecstatic response of his core base — and found them unnerving and unworthy of their support. That is what the polls and polling stations last night are telling us. . . . So bring on the coverage.
The dominant political fact of Trump’s first 18 months in office is that despite some good economic trends in the country (and yes, his precise role in engineering them remains debatable), [Trump] the president has not been able to widen his coalition beyond his core 40 percent to 45 percent. It is partly because he has not even remotely tried. But it is also because the very applause lines and abusive and divisive behaviors that appeal to his base turn off more-moderate and more-educated suburban Republicans, and do nothing to attract independents or conservative Democrats.
Yes, I want every American to know that two Trump supporters were spotted at the president’s last rally, in Ohio, wearing T-shirts that read, “I’d rather be Russian than a Democrat.” That’s an interesting data point. That’s whom you’re voting with when you vote for Trump.
I want every Republican running for office to hear every syllable of Trump’s bullying arrogance, when he warned at his Ohio rally that he destroys any G.O.P. politician who dares to defy him, saying, “I only destroy their career because they said bad things about me and you fight back and they go down the tubes — and that’s O.K.”
I want all of this heard and spread from sea to shining sea. Because though these words do rally Trump’s base, they also rally Democrats and evidently embarrass Republican moderates and alienate independents.
In a close election it doesn’t take many uncomfortable moderate Republicans to just stay home to make a big difference. That’s all I am looking for, not a tsunami — that’s not in the cards. Just a little wave of disgust among G.O.P. moderates is all that is needed to turn several key districts from red to blue.

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