How Trump’s Win May be the Worst Thing to Happen for the Far Right in Europe
What you can’t help but notice is that since Herr Trump’s tainted win, the alt Right has been on a losing streak.
Trump's victory may be the worst thing that happened to them — he's toxic abroad. https://t.co/1LheM2kked
— Dave Weigel (@daveweigel) May 7, 2017
As @NateSilver538 flags, this is now the 6th straight European election where the nationalist candidate underperformed their polling.
— Matt McDermott (@mattmfm) May 7, 2017
It is a great day for France. At least our own absurdity may have helped them. Trump as the face of Right wing nationalism is a terrible thing for-Right wing nationalism.
Polling miss today in France was far greater than anything seen in the 2016 US general election. But alas Macron won anyway, so no one cares
— (((Harry Enten))) (@ForecasterEnten) May 8, 2017
The truth is that there was not a big polling miss in the US as Silver, Enten, and friends have explained many times to no avail.
Congratulations to the people of France for rejecting racism, xenophobia, and the politics of fear!
— Rep. Keith Ellison (@keithellison) May 7, 2017
It was a big win for France and for Europe. Angela Merkel is also very pleased with the result:
“The fresh-faced leader of France had a 10-minute conversation with Europe’s most powerful leader just minutes after learning of his election victory and promised her he would visit Berlin “very quickly”.
“A source close to the former banker said the exchange was “very warm”, with the two pro-EU politicians having previously agreed on a future path for Europe which will see more power centralised in Brussels.”
“After the conservation, Mrs Merkel’s spokesman said: “She praised him for championing a united European Union that is open to the world. The decision of French voters is therefore a clear commitment to Europe.”
In many ways this is the Trump effect. Right wing populism got a real black eye by being associated with Donald Trump. He tends to make every idea he embraces less popular. ObamaCare is now more popular than ever while suddenly Americans are more liberal on immigration.
“France on Sunday shrugged off the siren call of right-wing populism that enchanted voters in the United States and United Kingdom, rejecting anti-E.U. firebrand Marine Le Pen and choosing as its next president Emmanuel Macron, a centrist political neophyte who has pledged to revive both his struggling country and the flailing continent.”
“The result brought to a close a tumultuous and polarized campaign that defied prediction at nearly every turn, although not at the end. Pre-election polls had forecast a sizable Macron victory, and he delivered — winning some 66 percent of the vote.”
“The landslide was just the latest blow in 2017 for far-right movements that had seemed to be on the march last year but have suffered setbacks in recent months across continental Europe.”
In a pointed endorsement of European unity, Macron strode to the stage at his raucous victory party in the grand central courtyard of Paris’s Louvre Museum on Sunday night to the strains of Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” theme, the European Union’s anthem.
“The task that awaits us, my fellow citizens, is immense and it starts tomorrow,” Macron said as thousands of supporters cheered and waved French flags.
Some have-naturally-used Macron’s victory to take potshots at Hillary Clinton. They argue Macron proves that the Center Left can still win if running an outsider candidate who promises change.
Here’s a question for this narrative though: is every election a change election? Can you credibly be the change candidate every two years or four years?
If Hillary had ran as the change candidate no one would have believed it. And honestly, she wasn’t-though her gender was a big change, something that the media wrongly dismissed out of hand. But honestly, 2016 was a consolidation election.
But too many Berners didn’t understand that. They failed to get what LBJ did understand: that you only get a short window to pass a progressive agenda. Being a progressive means you get your small windows to change things and then you have to consolidate.
The Bernie Bro take on 2016 was that Obama hadn’t changed things fast enough. This was naive based on political realities. It underestimated the scope of Obama’s change.
Why President Obama's legacy was broader and deeper than you think, and why it will endure https://t.co/HJdOAmXIEx
— Jonathan Chait (@jonathanchait) December 24, 2016
Most importantly, it missed the point that what change Obama did achieve still needed to be banked in and consolidated. That’s how progressive change happens: a few years of change, and a number more of consolidate.
Anyway, that aside, this is a great day for France and for the world. Trump congratulated Macron on Twitter-but you know he’s disappointed.
P.S. As we saw in my poll out last week, the long awaited poll results are in, and right now I’m just 11 points down vs. Peter King (GOP-NY-District 2). And the voters don’t even know who I am yet.
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