If that sounds familiar, it’s because it’s a quote. It’s a question Joe Biden asked at the end of last month.
That’s after he started off by saying of the President:
“He can’t stop the violence because for years he’s fomented it.”
That same question should come out of Biden’s mouth every time he makes any kind of public statement about anything.
Because it’s so obvious, yet could also be a revelation in its simplicity. Especially if we don’t assume everybody’s already thought of it. We hadn’t.
And the fact that Bob Woodward’s got Trump on tape saying things he’d deny he said if he wasn’t on tape (and may still deny anyway), doesn’t make Biden asking his question over and over again any less essential. If anything, it’s more imperative. Because stoking violence in cities, and fear of violence in cities spreading out of cities is all Trump’s got right now. By Election Day though, he may also have a more convincingly rebounding economy. Which would be harder for Biden to counter, although he’s already out there trying.
Yes, we’re still on our jag about how Democrats have got to repeat themselves more–yes, like Trump does–and not feel self-satisfied and assume their job is done once they’ve made a point. Even if they feel it was forcefully made.
Like we also should be hearing a lot more about how peoples’ mail still isn’t getting delivered on time. And how Trump has no respect for people who serve in the U.S. military. (Woodward seems to have a lot on this too.)
Yet those stories are fading. You think if they benefited Trump, he’d let them fade? Trump can’t escape the violence on the streets because he can’t control it, so that’s why he’s dialing it up and trying to turn it against his opponent.
And yes, we’re sure Biden will sometimes return to his very good question, and it is important for him to also talk about substantive policies that help him present himself as a Presidential candidate in full.
And maybe he feels it’s more important right now to exploit the fact that Trump really doesn’t have any concrete objectives for a second term. Except for, as Vice President Mike Pence most accurately put it:
And Biden does have much more well thought out ideas he’s itching to promote, and should appeal to people who are trying to earn a living wage.
But still: really doesn’t take that much time to add that one question in each time, no matter what else he’s talking about.
Because it’s the best argument yet against Trump’s “LAW AND ORDER!!” BS, and “say goodbye to your American Dream!”
So, Joe Biden, and Democrats in general: be like a dog with a favorite bone with your messaging, not like a cat wandering off to find a new piece of string.
And we know Biden’s got that in him; we’ve seen it.
And we know it’s not a positive message. But it’s a true one.
Will America be less violent if Trump is re-elected? Whichever side you’re on, everybody knows the answer. We’re already seeing fist fights breaking out at the edges of protests all over the place; and people are dead.
All under Trump’s watch. Sometimes under his “protection”. Often after his incitement.
And Trump attempts to promote the idea that violent protests are somehow “Joe Biden’s America” every time he opens his mouth at a rally or news conference. Usually multiple times.
Yet that one question Biden uttered really does have the capability to shut that ludicrous Trump argument down. Maybe not among Trump supporters, but certainly among people who are wavering. And that’s who Trump’s trying to reach too, because he knows he very much doesn’t have their votes locked in.
Trump wants to be the candidate of “Law and Order”. But in reality, he’s the President of Violence. Maybe he hasn’t started any wars overseas, and that’s great. But he’s started many small ones (for now) at home. As well as being the instigator of social upheaval the likes of which we haven’t seen in this country in more than a generation.
Yet Trump keeps ratcheting up his message: “Violence is ‘coming to the Suburbs’, and FAST.” While Biden takes a step back to present his economic plan or whatever else.
There’s no reason Biden shouldn’t or can’t do that, and repeatedly ask his question too, except that maybe he doesn’t want to go too heavy on it.
But there is a lesson to be learned from Trump in relation to that: you can never go too heavy. And the best way to convince people of something is to drive it home so many times it’s etched in their minds.
Heck, Trump’s done this very effectively with out-and-out lies. Repeating them so often that even though they’re ridiculous, people hear them so often they start to believe they are true.
Should be a lot easier if something actually is true to begin with. But effort and repetition are still necessary.
In our opinion, Biden’s hit on the right tool to expose the danger of Trump’s re-election. This one sentence can carry him a long way:
“Does anyone believe there will be less violence in America if Donald Trump is reelected?”
But he’s got to go heavy. Heavier than he ever imagined necessary or possible.
The best counter-punch is not one that keeps you in the bout, it’s one that sneaks up and knocks the other guy out because he isn’t expecting it, because he thinks his moves are the slickest possible.
And yeah, it’s not entirely without risk, because every time you ask that question you do refocus people on all the violence in the streets. And Trump’s pretty sure he’s winning that argument. But it’s worth that risk to turn Trump’s hubris against him!
OK, now we feel like we’re repeating ourselves…