WSJ editorial board tees off on Trump: Trends pointing to 'historic repudiation'

The Wall Street Journal editorial board in a Thursday night op-ed slammed President TrumpDonald TrumpTrump State Department appointee arrested in connection with Capitol riot Intelligence community investigating links between lawmakers, Capitol rioters Michelle Obama slams 'partisan actions' to 'curtail access to ballot box' MORE for not articulating a clear vision for a second term, with the 130-year-old publication warning the incumbent of defeat in November and taking the Republican majority in the Senate with him.

"President Trump may soon need a new nickname for 'Sleepy Joe' Biden. How does President-elect sound?" the board wrote. "On present trend that’s exactly what Mr. Biden will be on Nov. 4, as Mr. Trump heads for what could be an historic repudiation that would take the Republican Senate down with him."

"Mr. Trump refuses to acknowledge what every poll now says is true: His approval rating has fallen to the 40 percent or below that is George H.W. Bush and Jimmy CarterJimmy CarterThe Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - J&J vax rollout today; third woman accuses Cuomo Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter return to Georgia church after vaccinations The progressive case for the Hyde Amendment MORE territory," it continues. 


The board specifically broached two key issues that have emerged in the past four months that have resulted in falling numbers for the president: the coronavirus pandemic and the police killing of George Floyd that has resulted in nationwide protests and unrest in the country.

"Now the election is four months away, voters know him very well, and Mr. Trump has reverted to his worst form," the board notes. "His record fighting the coronavirus is better than his critics claim after a bad start in late February and March. He mobilized federal resources to help hard-hit states, especially New York."

"But he wasted his chance to show leadership by turning his daily pandemic pressers into brawls with the bear-baiting press and any politician who didn’t praise him to the skies," it added. "Lately he has all but given up even talking about the pandemic when he might offer realism and hope about the road ahead even as the country reopens. His default now is defensive self-congratulation." 

After arguing that the president can still define the election through school choice and being the right candidate to lead on the post-pandemic economy, the board surmised Trump will have let down all who voted for him in 2016. 

"Perhaps Mr. Trump lacks the self-awareness and discipline to make this case. He may be so thrown off by his falling polls that he simply can’t do it," it concludes. "If that’s true he should understand that he is headed for a defeat that will reward all of those who schemed against him in 2016. Worse, he will have let down the 63 million Americans who sent him to the White House by losing, of all people, to 'Sleepy Joe.'"


The former vice president has double-digit leads in a number of national polls and leads in the RealClearPolitics average of polls by more than 10 points, with a New York Times poll this week showing a 14-point lead for Biden over Trump, 50 to 36 percent.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthyKevin McCarthyWatch live: McCarthy holds press briefing Biden vows to work with Congress to 'refine' voting rights bill House passes voting rights and elections reform bill MORE (R-Calif.) in an interview on Fox News voiced concern over the president's current polling. 

“If the election was today, yes, you’re concerned,” McCarthy told "America's Newsroom" on Friday morning. “Can we do better? Yes, we can.”