A Few Quick Thoughts on the Verdict

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My main thought on this verdict, globally, is that I don’t know what it means in a political and electoral context.

It’s a good thing that Trump faced accountability, for once in his life, for his own conduct. It is ironic on many levels that this case, by far the poor relation of the family of Trump prosecutions, is the one that actually went to trial and actually secured a conviction. It’s a disgrace that the others are unlikely to go to trial before the election. But that’s where we are.

I said above I don’t know what the electoral impact of this is. There were various polls suggesting that a small but significant percentage of Trump’s supporters would pull their support if he were convicted of a felony or convicted of a crime. I don’t think that means anything. People don’t really know what their reactions will be to future events. And we’ve seen repeatedly that with Trump that his supporters have a high, high capacity to absorb game changing news and process it in a way that they soon realize that it does not apply to him. It’s a collective effort involving right wing media, right-wing influencers, etc.

But that doesn’t mean it won’t have an impact. I said above I don’t know what the impact is. But what I do feel I can add is that I don’t think this is a case where there’s an answer out there that we don’t know yet. I think this will be highly dynamic. It’s not like this happened and now we see if it matters. It’s more like this happened and it’s now making a bunch of others things happen and those will all have to play out. It’s like when the first player breaks in a game of pool. It’s not just the first impact but subsequent collisions coming out of it. It’s a dynamic moment.

Trump is now a convicted felon. He was convicted quickly and unanimously on all counts. There’s going to be a rapid fire public conversation about this. This will jolt some people who were barely paying attention to the trial or even the election to take note. How does Trump respond? How does Biden respond? This has never happened before and really nothing even like it has happened before.

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