The pair opened by discussing Trump’s health and what it means for the election. Of what was essentially a “superspreader” event for Barrett, after which over a dozen elected officials and members of Trump’s inner circle tested positive for the coronavirus, Kerry joked, “Trump has almost singlehandedly managed to bring down the U.S. government.”
Polling consistently shows Trump losing white suburban women voters, a key voting bloc that has historically voted Republican, and which Hillary Clinton lost in 2016. In 2018, however, this group moved to the Democratic Party en masse in a drastic shift. What’s more, Trump is not doing anything to try to win back that crucial bloc of voters. As Markos elaborated:
In 2018, Democrats won 48 seats in the House of Representatives — 38 of them were in suburban districts. We’re talking a mass annihilation of the Republican party … That systematic ass whooping in those suburban, formerly Republican districts was so overwhelming and so complete and so persistent that not even Republicans were pretending they had a chance of winning back the House this year.
Joined by guest Ilyse Hogue, Markos and Kerry also discussed the looming Supreme Court nominee confirmation process. Hogue thinks that, while margins are incredibly tight, it’s possible to derail it. On whether this battle is still worth fighting right now, Hogue said:
We have to drive up the political price of ramming through this confirmation. The people do not want it. The vast majority of Americans believe they should pick the president, and the president should pick the nominee, and by doing so, making some of those senators who came out quick think about what that means for them in 2020 and 2022, too. And let’s be clear: by the schedule they put out, they would be taking this vote days before the election, after people have already started to vote. So any glitch in the plan, any one of their senators peeling away kicks this into lame duck session, and we can win the election and have more control. So we have to fight like it’s winnable and drive up the political price in the process.
Hogue also emphasized that we can push on certain “pressure points” when it comes to certain senators who are more vulnerable during their battles for reelection this year—including Sen. Lindsey Graham—who she thinks will get cold feet once faced with strong opposing momentum. While Markos thinks that “this battle is really starting to hurt these Republicans politically,” it remains to be seen whether they will surrender or keep fighting.