Good Luck Finding “Impartial Jurors” for the Trump Trials
Plus: A Ray of Hope for the 2024 Elections from Pennsylvania.
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RICH THAU AND MATT STEFFEE: Good Luck Finding “Impartial Jurors” for the Trump Trials.
IT’S NOT TOO EARLY TO START ASKING what kind of jurors might be seated for a Trump criminal trial, and what concerns might be weighing on their minds.
We did exactly that when we focus grouped 11 North Carolina Trump-to-Biden voters, most of whom embody a contradiction. All of them told us on December 12 that Donald Trump can get a fair trial in his upcoming criminal cases—but only two say they personally could judge Trump fairly if, hypothetically, they were jurors.
In short, they seem confident that other random Americans will be able to perform a task they themselves are unable to perform.
RONALD RADOSH AND GABRIEL SCHOENFELD: Anti-Trump Means Anti-Democracy? You Can’t Be Serious.
WHO POSES A GREATER DANGER TO DEMOCRACY: Donald Trump and his minions? Or the very critics of Trump who are raising the alarm about an impending slide into authoritarianism?
Among those critics is Robert Kagan, who warned in the Washington Post last November that a second Trump presidency raised the specter of an “irreversible descent into dictatorship.” There are the editors of the Atlantic, who in the January/February issue present an array of top-flight authors—David Frum, Anne Applebaum, McKay Coppins, Ron Brownstein, David Graham, Tom Nichols, and more—spelling out in detail how Trump would usher an authoritarian or even a fascist regime into power. There is Liz Cheney, who paid a steep political price for standing up to Trump; she argues that, thanks to his candidacy, the United States is “sleepwalking into dictatorship.” There are the many academics whose studies in history and government leave them worried about the threat Trump poses to the American political system. And there are those officials and staffers and retired military officers who saw Trump up close during his first term and who now suggest that he is a “wannabe dictator” and warn that “a second Trump term could mean the end of American democracy as we know it.”
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SETH BLUESTEIN AND NEIL MAKHIJA: A Ray of Hope for the 2024 Elections from Pennsylvania.
FOR A GENERATION OR MORE, Americans have been advised every four years that the next election will be the most important in our lifetime. In 2024, that may finally be true. The future of our democracy is at stake, and it’s critical that the election is administered fairly, without undue influence from election deniers in positions of power—especially in swing states like Pennsylvania.
WILL SALETAN: The Muslim Ban Returns.
IN THE FINAL DAYS BEFORE THE IOWA CAUCUSES, Donald Trump is accusing Nikki Haley of being soft on terrorism. But the way he’s doing it tells a deeper story about Trump, his bigotry, and the fascist threat he poses: He’s attacking Haley, in effect, for opposing his 2015 proposal to ban all Muslims from coming to America.
Farewell, Chris Christie… With him dropping out, one wonders what, if anything, he got for dropping out before the votes were counted. (Like a deal that Haley won’t endorse Trump?) Will we ever know? The hot mic moment is one indication that he probably didn’t get a deal.
Despite showing up… The House GOP held Hunter Biden in contempt.
Is tonight a funeral for Reaganism? Max Burns on how Trumpism owns the GOP.
Speaker Mike Johnson… Just wants to be left alone.
In local news… Area school districts pioneer e-buses.
Meanwhile, in the “Free State of Florida™"… After removing a state attorney for politics, DeSantis loses on appeal.
Houthis step up attacks… As U.S. and allies weigh their response.
“Joc-a-mo-fee-no-ah-nah-nay” means “we mean business” apparently.
He was fired for watching Netflix at work… And now he’s running for Senate.
That’s it. The whole ballgame, explains the boss.
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