Less than two weeks to go until the mid-terms and Trump is reprising his 2016 arguments: fear and enemies... Make sure you vote, and bring a few friends with you!

Less than two weeks to go until the mid-term elections and President Trump is reprising his closing argument from the 2016 campaign: fear, enemies and a not-so-doggie whistle about that caravan of (brown) people coming from the south.

The world, according to Trump, is chaotic and dangerous and only Trump and the Republicans (who he doesn’t hold in very high regard if they oppose him) can save us.

Doris Kearns Goodwin, historian extraordinaire, was quoted last week as saying we are headed down the road of fascism (though she refuses to use that word yet, preferring to wait for the special counsel’s report and what, if any, culpability Trump or his campaign has).

For now, Trump points fingers at unseen “middle easterners” trying to sneak into our country using 7,000 potential immigrants as cover even though he has no proof whatsoever of that and those walking along have seen no proof either.

Trump’s enablers like to say that caravan was created by the Democrats. How, they ask, are 7,000 people walking thousands of miles to take a shot at freedom, walking along with no luggage and what are they eating?

Try, this: they are too poor to have luggage or much worth taking on their “walk”; why would the Democrats (for any reason) create such a march that Trump can use as a weapon against them; and, they aren’t eating unless folks along the way provide a little food and water. Plus, there are groups that are supporting them in their march toward hoped-for freedom – and they raise money for such purposes.

And, no, I don’t believe George Soros is funding it. These are desperate people who fear for their lives in their homeland and/or want a better life for their children; not happy tourists on their way to take a look at the U.S. border.

Trump points to the media as the “enemy of the people” and praises a congressman who body slammed a reporter for asking a health care question (and who pleaded guilty and apologized). Trump seems to idolize those who use physical force while he can only pantomime such actions because, well, that’s what he does best – fake it.

He sides with the Saudis as they fumble around for a reason they murdered journalist Jamal Khashoggi in their embassy and cut him into pieces to dispose of the body. And yet Trump’s core believers, when they are in the same hall with him, growl at reporters, yell “lock her up” and act like they did in those closing days of the 2016 election.

All I can say is: be afraid, be very afraid.

The polls, for what they are worth, are not only closing between Democrats and Republicans for the Congress, but Trump’s approval rating is improving. Historically, a president’s approval rating is a key predictor of how well his party will do in a mid-term election. His approval rating improving as he seems to dictate the election agenda are not good signs for a Democratic takeover of even the House. Remember, polls are only as good as when they were taken. The next day, they are, literally, history.

Still, a poll released by the Washington Post this morning shows very tight races in the 70 or so “toss-up” contests around the country.

These elections are local but what Trump is doing is ginning up his base so it will turn out for congressional candidates two weeks from now. The Kavanaugh confirmation helped get his base excited again and his saying the election may as well have his name on the ballot is getting them more worked up. It’s Trump versus the Democrats, he’s trying to say. That is unless Republicans lose the House and/or Senate, then it will not be his fault at all. And, based on the movement in the polls, including Trump’s approval rating, I won’t be shocked if Republicans maintain their majorities.

That scares you? Make sure you vote, and bring a few friends with you.

Trump is trying to excite his base so it will come out and vote for Republicans. He’s even promised a “middle-classtax cut” prior to the election! This says a couple of things: He admits his first “middle-class tax cut” was a failure and not being perceived as making a whit of difference and now wants to promise another cut exclusively for the middle class and “not for business,” he says.

At best, this proposal shows his ignorance of how our democracy works (like needing Congress IN session to formally propose bills and vote on them) and at worst, his promise is a flat out lie. Quite a choice.

His lies though are effective with those who support him – whether because they believe him or just honestly support a president who “tells it like it is” even though he tells is like it isn’t. According to the Washington Post fact-checker, Trump has lied more than 5,000 times already since his inauguration.

If his party should win at least one house, he will use it to show how effective he is – that only his campaigning saved the seats necessary to maintain a majority – a majority that failed to pass many of his initiatives his first two years. If the GOP maintains control of both houses and if the special counsel finds him with no culpability?

Then get ready for Doris Kearns Goodwin to use the “f” word.🔷


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(This piece was originally published on The Screaming Moderate.)

(Cover: Flickr/The White House/Andrea Hanks.)