Donald Trump Has Become His Own Undoing.

The President’s electoral prospects are currently collapsing, but will it last?

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Photo by Donald Teel on Unsplash

Before the culmination of events that have happened over the course of just a few months, I never would have imagined Joe Biden had a shot against Donald Trump and I’m sure I’m not alone. The former Vice President is about as empty of a suit that the democratic party could find, with a legislative background comparable to a moderate republican and an awe inspiring inability to even appear remotely sorry or take any responsibility for the damage he has caused. Considering that nearly every single other candidate on the crowded democratic debate stage when the primary first began was running because they knew that Joe Biden might not be able to handle the rigors of the primary let alone a general election or the office of the Presidency, skepticism towards him is certainly warranted.

Ultimately however, it appears as though after years of political ambition and decades of waiting for this moment, Mr. Biden — luckily for him — is up against a man who’s ineptitude and tendency to bungle might even outpace his own.

Donald Trump’s incredible ability to market himself got him to where he is today, and his mortal fear of looking like a failure will be his downfall. When we take a second to consider everything that’s happened over the past few months, the rapid spiral out of control — while Trump was certainly not solely responsible for it — experienced an undeniable acceleration due to his own personal demons. Demons that have plagued him long before he ever got in to office.

The Trump administration’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic is the ultimate testament to just how deeply the fear of failure runs within the current occupant of the White House. I’m not sure there is anything that currently terrifies Trump more than the thought of losing this upcoming election. So can we really be surprised that in his infinitely small and deeply uncurious mind, he was more concerned about scaring the markets ahead of the election if he took action to prepare for what he knew was coming than he was about what it would mean for the public if he didn’t? Can we really be surprised when for weeks, every indication was that Trump didn’t even want widespread testing purely because he was afraid that would show the public the extent of the outbreak, and thus hurt his re-election chances?

Long before he even entered politics, Trump’s marketing skills have relied on his ability to lie. But while he’ll always have a certain segment of voters who will support him no matter what, that number begins to shrink when loved ones are dying alone in hospital beds, drowning in their own fluids. The lie gets a bit more difficult to maintain when people hear of loved ones getting sick in their homes with fevers, coughing continuously some even to the point of vomiting, and still unable to get tested because there just weren’t enough to go around.

Of course, that deep fear of failure within him extends far beyond Covid-19 and how it would affect his re-election chances. Just days ago, angry that he was being seen as weak for retreating to his bunker in the midst of the civil rights protests outside the White House, Donald Trump tear gassed peaceful protestors so that he could step outside and relay the message that he would not hesitate to use the weapons of the military against the public. His deep-seated fear of not just electoral failure but the perception of weakness sparked impulsive actions so dangerous that even his own former secretary of defense called him a threat to the constitution.

Now, it appears there’s no denying that Donald Trump has rapidly devolved in to his own undoing, with recent poll numbers showing that he’s not even reaching a forty percent approval rating. If the American people weren’t feeling the direct consequences, I would almost find it amusing that it was his mortal fear of failure that’s proven itself to be the ultimate contributor pushing him down the very path he fears most. That being said, as good as things are looking for Joe Biden in this moment it’s still a long way to go, and the energy of Donald Trump’s core base should still not be underestimated, nor should the presumptive democratic nominee’s ability to bungle these chances himself. Whether this will be a long term trend remains to be seen, but it’s going to be fascinating to see how the President responds.

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Lauren is a writer & leftist with analysis on topics related to politics & policy. She can be reached at LaurenMartinchek@gmail.com or Twitter @xlauren_mx

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