The Wall Street Journal on Friday published an editorial suggesting that President Donald Trump is now headed toward “an historic repudiation” in November and a column by Peggy Noonan, the legendary Ronald Reagan speechwriter who just three weeks earlier had all but called for Trump’s resignation (calling that a week in which, for Trump, “[s]omething broke”), observing this week that “We had wondered if Mr. Trump can lead in a crisis. He cannot.”
While the editorial asserts that Trump has squandered chance after chance to display leadership and has instead lapsed into “defensive self-congratulation” even as his receptive electorate risks shedding all but the hardest core of his base (“35% or so,” estimates the editorial board, who “will never leave”), it also suggests that there remains a path back into the race with Democrat Joe Biden, whose national polling lead is now frequently in double digits. “As of now Mr. Trump has no second-term agenda, or even a message beyond four more years of himself,” it concedes, but: “Mr. Trump’s advisers have an agenda that would speak to opportunity for Americans of all races.”
President Donald Trump inspects a section of border wall in San Luis, Ariz., on June 23.
Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, in his inimitable syntax, wanted to make sure that — for all the attention the Journal editorial page was capturing on social media and on the morning news programs — the editorial’s message reached the highest office in the land. He suggested in a tweet that someone read it to Trump: