A Delusional Counterfactual: Ann Coulter’s Disappointed Fantasy about Donald Trump’s Missed Opportunities

In the wake of yesterday’s failed insurrection at the U. S. Capitol, it’s timely to flag the many delusions that members of the American Far Right continue to suffer from.  

One of them is the counterfactual idea, articulated by rightwing siren, Ann Coulter, on Breitbart News today (LINK) that Trump could have been a great president, if only he (wait for it....) was not who he is.    

Yes, it’s time for another leopard spot counterfactual – the claim that things would have been really different (usually better) if only the person in charge had acted in ways that WERE INHERENTLY CONTRARY TO THEIR VERY NATURE.  

Coulter writes:  

“Trump could have been a massively popular president and won reelection comfortably, if only he’d kept faith with his voters. Even people who abhorred him would have had to say, I thought he was a coarse vulgarian, but he was right about China ripping us off, he was right about the border, and he was right about standing up to crazy woke culture."

"The 2020 election should have been like Ronald Reagan’s 1984 reelection (49-state landslide). Like Trump, Reagan ran on popular issues left on the ground by other candidates — primarily his vow to destroy the Soviet Union and reignite the economy by slashing government."

"But — and here’s the big difference — Reagan kept his promises.  Not Trump!...."

Instead — in the greatest bait-and-switch in American history — he promptly turned his presidency over to nimrods Jared and Ivanka…We knew about the hucksterism. There was no warning about the kids.” 


There was no warning about the kids?  No sign that Trump ran a family business with major roles for his corrupt spawn?  As if there was no likelihood that installing your kids (and son-in-law) in prominent positions in government could turn out badly…. 

And while we’re at it, “knowing” about the hucksterism should leave no one surprised that Trump throughout his term (and til the bitter end) only looked after his own interests. 

Coulter’s argument is utterly mendacious and her use of deluded counterfactuals merely illustrates how they can serve as barometers of our most unhinged fantasies. 

Oh and one last comment.  

Lest we overlook Coulter’s own autocratic yearnings, pay attention to her main takeaway:

"What is the point of being slavishly loyal,” she writes, “to a person who is loyal to no one (except his numbskull kids)?...Give up the cult of personality, Trumpsters, or at least find someone with a better personality.” 

In other words, let’s find a much better autocrat to be slavishly loyal to.