Why the Remaining NeverTrumpers Should Apologize Now
Public apologies are difficult for most people, but particularly for political pundits whose livelihoods and reputations depend on their being right at least some of the time (Paul Krugman excepted).
Such statements can be emotionally wounding, even humiliating. But it isn't my purpose to humiliate or, worse, to gloat -- which is a repellent trait and almost always counterproductive. No spiking the football here.
Nevertheless, it is time for the remaining NeverTrumpers to apologize for a reason far more important than self-castigation or merely to make things "right." Donald Trump -- whose initial victory was a shock, even, ironically, to those of us who predicted it -- has compounded that shock by being astoundingly successful in his first year, especially at the conclusion. (He's a quick study, evidently.) More conservative goals have been achieved or put in motion in eleven months than in any time in recent, or even distant, memory. It's an astonishing reversal for our country accompanied by the beginnings of an economic boom.
But that same success is causing, it's becoming increasingly clear, an equally determined, even virulent, reaction from the left. At first they too thought Trump was an ineffectual blowhard who would shoot himself in the foot, ultimately redounding to their advantage. Now that they have found that not to be the case, they are in a state of panic, fearing a defeat for their ideals that would set them back years, even decades. They cannot let this stand and are marshaling all their forces from the media to Hollywood to the academy, not to mention at least some of the investigative units of the FBI.
The next year seems poised to be an ideological duel as close to the death as we have seen in a long time. If the right does not win, the gains of 2017 will be stymied by the election of 2018 and completely washed away in 2020.