Neil Katyal is a serious guy, a former acting U.S. solicitor general who’s argued cases before the U.S. Supreme Court and, yes, I’ll stipulate that he was appointed to the solicitor general’s post by President Barack Obama.
So, when Katyal says that Donald Trump is unlikely to be the 2020 Republican presidential nominee, one ought to consider this a serious prediction.
I’ll declare here that I disagree with Katyal. I believe Trump will run for re-election next year and that the Republican National Convention will nominate him for another term as president.
Katyal believes the probable impeachment by the House of Representatives will drive Trump to the sidelines. I also need to note that Katyal has wanted Trump to be impeached. He believes the president has committed high crimes and misdemeanors and should be kicked out of office.
If Donald Trump has taught any of us any lesson at all it ought to be to never underestimate this guy’s staying power. He should never have been elected president in the first place; but he was elected. He shouldn’t have been nominated by the GOP in the summer of 2016, given all the candidacy-destroying instances that would have taken out “normal” candidates for public office; but he was nominated.
Trump has managed somehow to survive countless deal-breaking mistakes. He denigrated a Vietnam War hero, the late Sen. John McCain; he mocked a physically handicapped reporter for the New York Times; he admitted to grabbing women by their “pu***”; he disparaged a Gold Star family at the Democratic National Convention. You want more? Well, you get the idea.
He survived all of it.
Is the president inclined to bow out of the 2020 presidential campaign because the House has impeached him? I find that hard to believe.
I wish it were plausible. I am shuddering at the notion that Trump somehow is going to parlay this impeachment into a winning political strategy. How? I suppose by energizing that base of support that holds firm at around 40 percent, based on the RealClearPolitics polling average. Yeah, he needs more than that to win, but won the presidency in 2016 despite polling nearly 3 million fewer votes than his Democratic opponent.
This clown is maddening in the extreme. He doesn’t deserve to be re-elected. I hope Neil Katyal is right. However, I fear the worst, that Trump will run for re-election … and that he just might win!