Donald Trump Secures Dead Victorian Lady Vote With Susan B. Anthony Pardon
Donald Trump has a woman voter problem. And while he might have won reelection in 1920 when Black women weren't fully voting, he's starting to slide with white women, even the ones in the suburbs whom he's vowed to save from Cory Booker.
Trump tried to turn this all around Tuesday when he signed a pardon for Susan B. Anthony, who no one explained to him is 200 years old and dead. He announced his bold advance of women's rights during a White House event commemorating the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment, which granted (white) women the right to vote.
Anthony was arrested and found guilty in 1872 on the charge of voting while a woman. This was technically “voter fraud," which Trump believes accounts for at least 80 percent of all votes that aren't for him.
TRUMP: She was never pardoned! What took so long?
Either because of fear, ignorance, or deliberate sabotage, whenever Trump expresses shock that something has “never" happened, no one on his staff bothers to tell him why or that it has happened already. In Anthony's case, she didn't want a pardon. She wanted the right to vote. She refused to even pay the fine.
From the L.A. Times:
"I shall never pay a dollar of your unjust penalty," Anthony concluded. "All the stock in trade I possess is a $10,000 debt, incurred by publishing my paper — the Revolution — four years ago, the sole object of which was to educate all women to do precisely as I have done, rebel against your man-made, unjust, unconstitutional forms of law, that tax, fine, imprison and hang women, while they deny them the right of representation in the government.
"And I shall work on with might and main to pay every dollar of that honest debt, but not a penny shall go to this unjust claim. And I shall earnestly and persistently continue to urge all women to the practical recognition of the old revolutionary maxim, 'Resistance to tyranny is obedience to God.'"
Trump's pardon arguably “erases history" the same way he insists removing Confederate statues would. Anthony was a woman arrested for voting. That is a stain that should remain on America's conscience. Unlike the Confederacy, at least there's no statue of the man who arrested her.
As highest ranking woman elected official in New York and on behalf of Susan B. Anthony’s legacy we demand Trump re… https://t.co/EkcKsXsjeL— Kathy Hochul (@Kathy Hochul)1597759140.0
This is a pointless gesture that coincidentally occurred on the same day that longtime Republican Cindy McCain endorsed Joe Biden for president. Trump gets along fine with dead women. It's the living ones where he has his troubles.
One of them is former and still reigning First Lady Michelle Obama. She read Trump for the filth he is Monday at the virtual Democratic National Convention. It wasn't just a speech. It was a termination notice. She said he was underperforming and was "in over his head." The US needed to upgrade the position and Trump should seek despotic opportunities at a less-demanding country.
Trump had a daylong temper tantrum over Obama's speech, which he considered “divisive" as if he doesn't accuse Barack Obama of treason every eight minutes or so. When asked about Obama's remarks while at the White House event celebrating women, he went off on a twisted rant that that derailed his whole "I'm every woman" stunt.
TRUMP: She was over her head!
"No puppet! No puppet! You're the puppet!"
TRUMP: And frankly, she should've made the speech live, which she didn't do, she taped it. And it was not only taped, it was taped a long time ago, because she had the wrong [COVID-19] deaths.
So, wow ... like that is bonkers. Trump is such the showman he's disappointed that the Democratic National Convention isn't broadcast live this year. We all miss the electrifying spontaneity from past conventions. But he actually took Obama to task for not having an up-to-date number of Americans who've died on his astigmatic watch. She lamented the loss of more than 150,000 Americans, a horrific milestone we passed at the end of July. However, on the day of Obama's speech, the grim number was more than 170,000. That's 20,000 lives lost in just two weeks. But Trump is more concerned with Obama's fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
TRUMP: She gets these fawning reviews. If they gave a real review, it wouldn't be so fawning.
No one's faking the funk on those reviews. Obama blew the roof off the sucker. Melania Trump stood there during this knowing Trump's gonna flip out when her sad little speech gets closing notices halfway through.
Michelle Obama is objectively more popular than Trump. She's been Gallup's most admired woman in the country for the past two years. She's extremely popular with those suburban women Trump thinks he can court with a racist arrangement from 1-800-JIM-CROW.
It's not a good strategy. But maybe when the next bad poll numbers come out, Trump can try pardoning Amelia Earhart for losing that plane.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He writes reviews for the A.V. Club and make believe for Cafe Nordo, an immersive theatre space in Seattle. He's also on the board of the Portland Playhouse theatre. His son describes him as a “play typer guy."