September 17, 2020
Could Black Lives Matter Cost Biden the Election?
All the Biden campaign had to do was not seem crazy…
In a year with a pandemic raging, an unemployment rate at around 10%, and tens of millions of Americans still living with mask and social-distancing restrictions, all the Biden-Harris ticket had to promise was a return to normalcy.
Instead, Joe Biden and the rest of the Democrat apparatus became devoted to the Black Lives Matter (“BLM”) movement. While the country was at near maximum (and as the data are now showing, unhelpful) panic in May 2020, the Democrat Party mobilized around the lethal police incident with George Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
The early weeks of BLM’s resurgence was a major opportunity for Democrats. Hundreds of thousands of likely Biden voters were taking to the streets across America. All at once, this movement could energize the base, create a narrative for political change, and put their Republican opponents on defense.
Then, protests increasingly turned to riots. And the potential partisan opportunity turned to a clear political liability.
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Polling nationwide has shown a substantial drop in support for BLM in recent months. More important for the Biden campaign’s White House aspirations, swing-state voters and independents in places like Ohio, Florida, and Pennsylvania view BLM in an increasingly negative light. Months of rioting, looting, and mob defamation of all police as racist murderers have had an entirely predictable effect.
Even worse for the Left were the events captured on surveillance video in Los Angeles last weekend… A black male would-be assassin tried to execute two sheriff deputies sitting in their patrol car. Both officers were hit in the head but miraculously survived.
The shooter’s motives are not yet known. But here’s a prediction…
The shooter will be found. He will be a true anti-cop BLM believer.
But the media will only slowly release information about anti-cop rhetoric in social media posts and other indications of his radical ideology… For everyone else who is honest in their assessment, it will be clear that this domestic terrorist was radicalized through some of the same BLM rhetoric that is supported in official public relations announcements of major American corporations. They bent the knee to BLM – and so did he.
The Democrats can’t run from this. They made it their political rallying cry in 2020, and it’s too late in the election cycle to turn that around. As cities across the country – from New York to Los Angeles, Seattle to Atlanta – have been subjected to riots and looting in the name of BLM, Biden and Vice President Candidate Kamala Harris refused to condemn the group. Instead, they gave further credibility to its lies about systemic racism causing a wave of police murdering young black men.
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This BLM narrative was based on exaggerations and misrepresentations of the facts. Voters have wised up, and Democrats have blundered.
For example, as we just saw in Lancaster, Pennsylvania over the weekend, there are now riots and looting in the name of a man who was shot while literally trying to hack a police officer to death…
Ricardo Munoz was already facing trial for stabbing four people when he ran out into the street during a domestic-disturbance call and charged an officer with a large knife raised over his head. The officer first attempted to run away, then turned and shot Munoz when it was clear that he faced a lethal threat. The ordeal was all captured on body camera – which the Lancaster police department quickly released to the public. The facts of the incident are not in dispute. It was entirely justified.
Did any of this transparency calm BLM activists? Of course not.
Apparently, the new standard for “anti-racism” is that police must allow a minority (in this case Hispanic) to stab them to death, or else they’re being racist. It is absurd, reckless, and stupid beyond words.
But how else could one explain the reaction from BLM in Lancaster? They rioted in the streets, destroyed property, and even attacked a Post Office in the hours after the shooting.
It is a core tenet of BLM that the police are the bad guys even when they are defending themselves in the most obvious of life-threatening circumstances.
Americans are tired of rioters and the false anti-cop narrative of BLM. As I wrote earlier this summer when the shift began:
The protests have, predictably, evolved into a massive left-wing political mobilization tool. What started, ostensibly, as an extension of the outrage felt at the police killing of George Floyd has become a nationwide movement of anti-Trumpism and far-left causes.
Now with rising crime in major cities across America, the sought-after suburban vote may be shifting toward Trump.
The president has his shortcomings. But unlike his opponent, Trump has never wavered in his support for the police or rule of law. The choice of who will make Americans safer on the streets may end up being more consequential than who would make them safer from a pandemic.
And in an ultimate irony, a BLM movement that absolutely despises Trump may, with their destructive and illegal actions, end up elevating their most hated opponent to four more years as president.
Now here are some of the stories we’re reading…
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And let us know what you’re reading at [email protected].
Executive Editor, American Consequences
With P.J. O’Rourke and the Editorial Staff
September 17, 2020