Obama strategist David Axelrod discusses Trump fears

 November 3, 2023

One of the foremost voices in Obama world, David Axelrod, acknowledged fears of a second Donald Trump presidency at an event Monday. 

Axelrod, the chief strategist from Obama's presidential campaigns, called the upcoming 2024 election the "most fateful" in living memory during a talk at Harvard.

Obama's nightmare

Axelrod warned his audience at the Harvard Institute of Politics JFK Jr. Forum that a rematch between Trump and Biden is likely.

“Live with it, America, because I think that’s where we’re headed,” Axelrod said.

Trump is dominating the Republican presidential primary, and he is tied with Biden in the polls despite facing over 90 criminal charges.

Trump has said the charges, all brought by left-wing prosecutors, are politically motivated. Axelrod, with unusual candor, said the indictments were meant to hurt Trump but have had the opposite effect.

“Those bricks, instead of kryptonite, turned out to be battery packs,” he said.

"Democracy" at risk

Some Democrats fear President Biden is vulnerable, pointing to his weak approval ratings and mounting crises at home and abroad.

Looking ahead to 2024, Axelrod expressed concern that Trump might win even if he is convicted of trying to "overturn" the "free and fair" 2020 election.

“On the one side, we have a guy who is not just a convicted felon, but convicted of trying to overturn the free and fair election and seize the power of the presidency,” he said. “I can’t think of anything more violative of constitutional principles than that.”

Axelrod compared Trump's effect on "democracy" to a new variant of the COVID pandemic: "Trump 2.0 is the equivalent of the Delta variant of democracy. It’ll be 1,000 times more virulent than the first and harder to control."

Of course, Axelrod did not acknowledge any concern that the prosecution of the leading opposition candidate poses a problem for the endurance of democracy.

Besides prosecutions, Trump is facing an effort to have him taken off the ballot - which some liberals have oddly justified in the name of democracy.

This weekend, Axelrod will join Obama alumni in Chicago for a 15th anniversary celebration of Barack Obama's 2008 victory. No doubt, Trump will cast a large shadow over the gathering.

As the 2024 election approaches, that shadow will grow larger - and the shrill rhetoric from the left will get louder.

" A free people [claim] their rights, as derived from the laws of nature."
Thomas Jefferson
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