The Lincoln Project has another very strong ad directly comparing Dr Anthony Fauci to Donald Trump. The Trump administration has started attacking Fauci, trying to discredit him because he often disagrees with (and occasionally contradicts) Trump, when Trump lies. In other words, Fauci is just doing his job, and doing it well. Trump can’t tolerate that.
I really love the ads that The Lincoln Project is doing. I know that many people worry that they won’t move the needle much, because probably very few Trump voters will ever even watch these ads. And the people who are watching them probably already hate Trump.
But I think they may be missing the point.
First of all, (and it has been mentioned that) it is particularly important that the people behind The Lincoln Project are all Republicans. They can say things that the Democrats dare not say and get away with it, because this is not your run-of-the-mill partisan fight. And that may give some die-hard Republicans permission to (perhaps just this once) not vote for someone who is clearly unfit to be president.
But in some ways, it is even more significant that these ads get Democrats excited and energized (it sure does it for me). The Democrats have a bad tendency to take their base for granted. In fact this was one of the biggest mistakes that Hillary Clinton made in the 2016 election. She assumed the “blue wall” would hold and didn’t campaign there, instead running ads in other states in the hope of getting a landslide.
Meanwhile, Trump concentrated on his base and won. This can work for Democrats too — the rise of Bernie Sanders shows how important it is to feed your base, as they were able to accomplish far more than their numbers would normally indicate.
I’m not saying that focusing on your base will guarantee success. Indeed, Trump seems unable to do anything but focus on his racist and angry base. But in this case we are talking about more than the behavior of the candidates. The Lincoln Project is completely separate from Biden. And not only are they energizing Biden’s base, they are demoralizing Trump himself. And that’s wonderful.