Findings, music, and occasional reflections by Paul Woodward

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Trump starts to articulate a reality painful for him to acknowledge: He could lose in 2020

Politico reports:

He’s mused out loud about an embarrassing 2020 defeat. He’s acknowledged his severe deficit in key polls. And he’s made naked appeals to the critical voting blocs of suburban women and older adults — two demographics he has struggled to win over.

Just weeks from Election Day, President Donald Trump is saying the quiet part out loud about his own campaign. The president is crisscrossing the country with a packed schedule, flying to some states he won handily in 2016, to deliver a final pitch for a second term — and making no secret of his own shaky standing.

“Could you imagine if I lose?” Trump said Friday evening at a campaign rally in Macon, Ga. “My whole life, what am I going to do? I’m going to say, ‘I lost to the worst candidate in the history of politics.’ I’m not going to feel so good. Maybe I’ll have to leave the country. I don’t know.”

Part of the act is tactical, aides say. Trump thrives on being underestimated, and they point to how the president came from behind in 2016. [Continue reading…]

CNN reports:

If things don’t go Donald Trump’s way on Election Day, the President may face more serious matters than how to pack up the West Wing.

Without some of the protections afforded him by the presidency, Trump will become vulnerable to multiple investigations looking into possible fraud in his financial business dealings as a private citizen — both as an individual and through his company. He faces defamation lawsuits sparked by his denials of accusations made by women who have alleged he assaulted them, including E. Jean Carroll, the former magazine columnist who has accused him of rape. And then there are claims he corrupted the presidency for his personal profits.

As President, Trump has been able to block and delay several of these investigations and lawsuits — including a yearlong fight over a subpoena for his tax returns — in part because of his official position. Many of those matters have wound through the courts and will come to a head whether he is reelected or not.

But with the polls showing that Democratic rival Joe Biden is leading in the race, the stakes become much higher for Trump if he loses the election. A raft of legal issues, including a criminal investigation by New York prosecutors, will come into focus in the weeks after Election Day. [Continue reading…]

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