On this week’s episode of “The Ben Shapiro Show: Sunday Special,” the Daily Wire editor-in-chief talks to Dana Perino, former White House Press Secretary in the George W. Bush administration, about the competing narratives surrounding the 2016 election. Video and partial transcript below:
SHAPIRO: What the hell happened in 2016? Because you have a bunch of competing sort of narratives about what happened in 2016. On the Right, you have this narrative that President Trump put together his brand new coalition that had never been done before, driving people out to vote like no one in history. And on the Left, you have this idea that President Trump stole the election, and that truly Hillary Clinton was just sort of a failure at recreating the coalition of Barack Obama, but that the new normal is Obama’s coalition and Trump is an outlier. How do you analyze?
PERINO: I’m definitely with the former. I think the latter is really dangerous for Democrats. If [they] think that, they’re going to lose again.
I’m also troubled by this notion that you have Democrats, and many women Democrats, saying you can’t put a woman up in 2020 because a woman just can’t beat President Trump because [they just] know America is not ready to vote for a woman. Wait, Hillary actually won the popular vote. She screwed up her strategy in three states.
So, I feel like all this women’s empowerment nonsense that you hear from Democrats basically saying, ‘Oh, we actually, we can’t beat them.’ I actually think that the popular vote might not be achievable for President Trump, although he’s giving it a shot — going to New Mexico, going to California — he can increase those vote totals there even if he doesn’t win those states. Let’s say New Mexico might be in the cards. California obviously is not, but if you can increase the number of people that vote for you and improve on the popular vote, that would be something.
I also think that Americans were much more ready for change than traditional politicians or political observers thought. They were much more comfortable with it. They had had it. I’m very interested in the voters that voted for, well, Obama and then [for] Trump. I don’t feel like the Democrats have done anything to win back those votes.
I feel like their economic arguments are pretty poor, and I remember Mitch McConnell saying on air at the [first] State of the Union, after Trump wins, after that first year of his presidency. Like, Dana, look at this list. Look at all these things, and in any Republican administration, if you didn’t know who the president was, would Republicans be pleased?
The answer is arguably yes. From judges and policy deregulation, all of these things have made sense. I also think that Republicans are quite lucky that President Trump decided to go with them, right? Because had he thought that there was an opportunity and the timing was right, he could have steamrolled over the Democratic Party as well.
Well, now he’s doing that. He did it with the Republicans, and now he’s doing it with them.
I did recognize about two years ago, I said, they’re gonna come after the Electoral College. This is going to be the new thing. Even though Obama won the Electoral College, they never talked about it again. But now they try to say that it’s racist, that it’s unfair. And I said on Tucker Carlson’s Show: Watch, they’re going to come for the Electoral College. It won’t happen in our lifetime, but it is under threat.