Trump’s second shot at president a danger to the US and the world

Elections in other nations are of passing interest to most Australians but a Donald Trump return to the US presidential election would be a disaster for democracy, international relationships and the war in Ukraine.

Former president Donald Trump in Iowa.

Former president Donald Trump in Iowa.Credit: AP

His re-election would also further polarise and traumatise the people of his unhappy land and his oxymoronic predilection for displaying contempt for allies has potential to rewrite Australia’s relationship with the US.

Yet, given the years of turmoil and tragedy his one-presidential term imposed on his country, it beggars belief that he is leading the race for the Republican presidential nomination. Some opinion polls have him leading President Joe Biden.

Everybody knows what they will be getting with Trump. The temperament and character he displayed as developer, reality TV performer, president, political refusenik and denier make him utterly unfit to return to office.

Trump is all that remains of his four years in power. He built nothing for the future. But 400,000 died from COVID-19 during his presidency; his refusal to counter the virus with little other than bleach saw the richest nation record nearly 1.2 million deaths in total from COVID-19. He was indicted twice and made lies, personal attacks and insults his political lingua franca. He showed such stunning contempt for the rule of law that, based on his own words, his second presidency would threaten America’s existence. Internationally, he created chaos, cosying up to Russian, North Korean and Chinese despots and advocating the abandonment of NATO and Ukraine.


Out of office, Trump has spent the past four years trailing his coat before his coterie of credulous fans, maintaining his version of a 2020 election victory. Meanwhile, a plethora of accusations and ongoing court cases bubble on: they cover his business dealings, sexual life, tax and his behaviour when supporters stormed the Capitol in Washington in January 2021 – 14 days before Biden was sworn in.

Biden’s victory was do-or-die for the Democrats, but the party failed to seize the moment to ensure Biden’s age and capacity did not become a concern for many US voters and for us. The Democrats should have been pragmatic enough to have avoided such a misstep in succession planning instead of leaving their candidate nobbled by his years of experience.

The media, too, faces significant challenges confronting the Trump juggernaut. Many mainstream media failed to spot the beast lurking and dismissed him and his supporters in 2016. Big mistake. Trump press-ganged them into the campaign as the fake media and now mainstream media bashing is as American as apple pie.

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