Donald Trump, Students for Trump, AZ
Donald Trump speaking with supporters at an "An Address to Young Americans" event hosted by Students for Trump and Turning Point Action at Dream City Church in Phoenix, AZ. Photo credit: Gage Skidmore / Wikimedia (CC BY-SA 2.0 DEED)

The elections of 2016 and 2020 were the “most important ever.” Now it’s happening again in 2024.

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In his first social media post of the year, Donald Trump predicted that this year will be a “historic one.” It might be the only time in 2024 that the former president will actually write the truth on his Truth Social platform.

Casual observers may be sick of hearing that this election will be “the most important ever” and “crucial for the future of the US and democracy itself.” 

After all, they were told the same thing in 2016 and then again four years ago. However, it is undeniable that Trump and his allies have stepped up their attacks on elections and the country’s institutions in an unprecedented way.

Therefore, 2016 was the most important election up to that point. Trump’s Electoral College victory put the country on a dark path. If not for the coronavirus pandemic, it seems likely that he would have done a lot more harm. 

And, of course, Trump’s three Supreme Court nominees have already set the US back decades with some of their rulings, most notably by providing the required majority in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the decision that took away a woman’s right to an abortion.

While Trump was restrained in key moments by “the adults in the room” that he was initially convinced to surround himself with, especially in the military and the Department of Justice, he still managed to do a lot of damage, especially by completely undermining the confidence of his supporters in elections (and democracy itself) as well as many of the country’s institutions. 

And, of course, his first term in office culminated in a failed coup, which validates the predictions of all those who had said how crucial the 2016 election was.

However, it was eclipsed in importance by the 2020 contest, which seemed like the last chance to stop Trump from acting out on his authoritarian tendencies. By that time, he had gotten rid of most of the reasonable people in his administration and figured out how to wield his power more effectively.

When a broad coalition of Americans came together to hand a decisive victory to Joe Biden, it seemed as though the threat of Trump had been banished. 

Now, however, he is back, and we are looking at a likely rematch between two candidates Americans don’t like. 

That also means anything can happen, and anybody who tells you that they know how things will turn out is lying.

What we do know is that this will be the craziest year in politics.

Usually, the first half of an election year is all about the primaries. This time, however, will likely be different because it will be all about Trump’s legal troubles and whether he will see the inside of the courtroom before the election.

And, if he does manage to evade accountability long enough and appear on the ballot, then we can be certain of one thing: 2024 will be the most important election in US history… again.

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