Are There Eclipse Glasses for the Election?

Bret Stephens: Good news, bad news, Gail. The economy added just over 300,000 new jobs last month, which gives Joe Biden something to brag about. But illegal immigration is now the No. 1 concern for voters, according to a story in The Wall Street Journal, and in one February poll 65 percent of Americans disapproved of Biden’s handling of the border.

You still feeling chipper about the president’s chances this year?

Gail Collins: Yep. It’s one thing to be cranky about the state of the union. It’s another to want to hand it over to a multiply indicted jerk who is supposed to go on trial this month for paying hush money to a porn star, followed by cases involving everything from stashing classified documents in the bathroom to criminal conspiracy to overturn the 2020 election.

Well, I could go on and on. And the cases will go on and on. Voters are going to have to pay attention, and that’s going to give Biden the election.

Feel free to torture me if I turn out to be wrong.

Bret: I pray you’re right. But you have more faith in the wisdom of the American people than I do. I’m with H.L. Mencken on the presidency: “As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people …. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”

Adorned a second time, I should say.

Gail: If Biden were running against a right-wing stranger, maybe I’d agree. But the country knows Trump, and I’m betting a majority realizes that what they’d be getting with his return would be pretty unpleasant.

Bret: Memories get awfully short once you reach the trillionth tweet.

Gail: Every time we talk about this stuff, I feel that it’s all about new forms of communication. If the country were just listening to critiques of the Biden administration from the mass media of right, middle and left, we’d be in a different world. Not saying we should go back there, just that now people have the chance to vent their feelings to hundreds of thousands of strangers. It creates a whole different mega-conversation.

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