In This Review

Running Against the Devil: A Plot to Save America From Trump—and Democrats From Themselves
Running Against the Devil: A Plot to Save America From Trump—and Democrats From Themselves
By Rick Wilson
Crown Forum, 2020, 352 pp
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Snappy, breezy, entertaining, passionate, and full of unnecessary obscenity, this book implores Democrats not to throw away the 2020 presidential election, telling them exactly what to do and what not to. Wilson, a former Republican political consultant, has the zeal of a convert. Some of his advice is elementary: for example, only 15 swing states will matter in the general election. Other admonitions are more compelling. With Donald Trump as the incumbent, the election will be a referendum on his presidency. But because Trump practices “pure, unadulterated opportunistic politics,” Democrats will have to beat him at his own game. They should refuse to feed Trump issues that he can use against them (including socialism, reparations for slavery, and the Green New Deal). Instead, Democrats should engage in “shallow, content-free campaigning,” concentrating on a unifying message of common purpose and traditional values. Trump will stop at nothing to avoid a loss, so Democrats must be prepared to respond to the worst attacks they can imagine. A brisk read, the book delivers sobering insights that must be heeded before the Democrats choose their nominee.