‘Can’t just wish them away’: Psaki, legal scholar talk how to ‘find a way to live with’ Trump supporters

With the potential loss of one-party control over Congress looming as the days tick down until the most critical midterm elections in the nation’s history, leftists are facing the grim prospect of having to deal with the 74 million Americans who voted for former President Donald J. Trump once again having a seat at the political table, and they aren’t happy about it.

Former White House press secretary and future MSNBC host Jen Psaki and Shadi Hamid, a senior fellow at the liberal Brookings Institution think tank discussed the Trump supporter problem on Friday’s edition of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” with the scholar bemoaning the fact that “we can’t just wish them away” of the demonized and persecuted portion of the electorate that voted for the “wrong” guy in 2020.

(Video: MSNBC)

“I think this is the fundamental issue and question of our time, is what to do when democracy produces bad outcomes,” Hamid said when asked by host Mika Brzezinski about his new book and why “democracy” matters around the world, likening his experiences in the politically volatile Middle East to America since the 2016 election when Trump stunned the establishment with his upset of heavily favored Hillary Clinton.

“I thought that was a foreign thing, a Middle Eastern thing, I come back to D.C. for Trump’s election in 2016, 2017, and we’re no longer talking about health care or marginal tax rates, we’re talking about the foundational questions of what it means to be a nation, what it means to be American,” he continued. “And those are scary topics because how do you compromise on them, right? And that’s sort of where we’re at now, where a lot of Republicans are not willing to accept democratic outcomes they don’t like. And also, I assume if Trump wins in 2024, a lot of Democrats won’t be willing to accept that result. So that, to me, is really what we’re contending with, is how do we come to terms with this reality.”

After other members of the panel chimed in with their input, it was Psaki’s turn to pick Hamid’s brain.

“As we look to 2024, because my former boss also talked about how one Trump term is one thing, two Trump terms is another thing,” she said.”What lessons should Americans take from what has happened around the world, if there are extended years of a government in place who is fighting against democracy and fighting against fundamental rights of people? What could happen with more years?”

“You’re right that it’s a universal thing and we can talk about Europe has its own cases where in Italy we might have the first far-right prime minister since Mussolini and that person would have come to power through elections, or the Sweden Democrats…,” Hamid responded, referring to the backlash against authoritarian globalists across the pond.

“So, it’s not just America. It’s happening all over the place because we’re not debating economic issues anymore, we’re debating cultural issues, identity issues, issues around religion. So I think we have to accept that people who we completely disagree with are sometimes going to win,” he said.

“So there’s what, 74 million Trump supporters, voters. We can’t just wish them away. They’re not going to disappear,” he lamented. “So then we have to find a way to live with them even if we think they’re bad people, even if we think there’s a threat to everything we hold dear, because what’s the other option that’s in front of us? And that’s the challenge, because a lot of people will say, well, they’re deplorable and we can’t find a way to live with them.”

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Chris Donaldson


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