How I Learned to Love the Rerun Election

When our pollsters recently asked voters how they felt about the coming election, they heard words that could also describe rancid garbage, personal regret or a meteor headed for Earth.

Stinks. Ashamed. DOOMED.

“Lousy,” offered Joe Ruddach, 61, the owner of auto and coffee businesses who lives in Spokane, Wash., when I called him last week. He added words like “anxious” and “stressed” for good measure.

“I wish they could get younger people,” he said with a sigh, “or someone that could bring people together.”

I’m the new host of this newsletter, and I get it. The rematch between President Biden and former President Donald Trump feels inherently tired, or perhaps inescapably depressing. The primaries ended quickly; the campaign trail is quiet. Both men are broadly unpopular. More Americans see the contest as bad for the country than good, and a full 30 percent of registered voters in the latest New York Times/Siena College poll said they felt scared or apprehensive.

Election dread is real and bipartisan, although Republicans seem to view things a bit more brightly than Democrats. Whatever your politics, you might be tempted to tune out this presidential election completely.

But today — notwithstanding the fact that it is April 1 — I am here to make the case for the 2024 election, which I think will be as captivating, revealing and far-reaching as any in recent history, one that might turn less on the candidates we know than the voters who will choose them.

Back to top button