Trump is picking a dumb fight that could cost him dearly

  • Donald Trump has picked a terrible political fight.

  • The former president is still hellbent on repealing Obamacare.

  • Biden and Democrats could not be more delighted by his choice.

Former President Donald Trump just couldn't help himself. All it took was a less-than 600-word editorial to set him off. Trump has never had a reputation for self-control, but this time his detour may end up being one of the dumbest moves during an otherwise dominating primary campaign.

Because once again, we are talking about repealing Obamacare.

"I don't want to terminate Obamacare, I want to REPLACE IT with MUCH BETTER HEALTHCARE. Obamacare Sucks!!!" Trump wrote on Truth, his social media platform, early Wednesday morning.

The former president's initial revival of the debate was in response to a Wall Street Journal editorial.

As a result, Trump has handed President Joe Biden a potent gift at a critical time.

Polls show Americans think the current president is too old. They aren't happy with the economy. Biden's handling of Israel's war against Hamas has angered key demographics in his base. And while it's too early, voters in key swing states show Biden has serious work to do.

In reigniting the debate, Trump has picked a fight on the worst ground he could have possibly chosen. A September NBC poll found Americans trust Democrats on health care by a more than 2 to 1 margin. In comparison, Republicans hold massive advantages on the economy, crime, and border security.

The Biden campaign wasted little time in highlighting Trump's comments. They already have a minute-long TV ad airing nationally.

"I don't want to go back," a nurse from Nevada named Jody says during the ad. "I can't go back."

Unlike the rest of his party, Trump appears unable to learn the lesson that three Supreme Court decisions, a government shutdown, and an embarrassing failure on the Senate floor hammered into everyone else. Republicans still have gripes about the law. Many have just accepted they can do little about it.

This moment is a departure from a near-perfect primary campaign. Trump might be facing 91 felony counts in multiple jurisdictions, but he and his allies have annihilated his once best-positioned primary foe in Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. Even attacking Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds hasn't hurt the former president. Trump would need a historic-level collapse to not reclaim the GOP nomination.

Trump still hasn't solved the problem that bedeviled the GOP the last time. Despite over a decade of promises of "repealing and replacing" Obamacare, Republicans have never agreed on how to replace the law. Trump's own White House rather infamously promised his plan was "two weeks" away. It never came. An unnamed Republican close to the Trump campaign told Politico, "there's not a real 'there' there. No one's working on this."

In reigniting the repeal debate, Trump has also opened up the playbook for the Biden White House. Historically, unpopular presidents manage to hang on by nuking their lesser-known opponents. Trump, of course, is not unknown. And yet, the former president has now handed his successor another way to remind voters that Biden is not "the alternative."

Besides Trump already had his victory. After their embarrassing debacle, Republicans axed the individual mandate that levied a federal penalty for not having health insurance as part of Trump's larger tax cut plan. There was also that party in the Rose Garden.

The former president has avoided political pitfalls before. Unlike typical Republicans, Trump professes an aversion to cutting Social Security and Medicare (even if the actual reality isn't the same.)

This time he created the trap. Trump could still win the White House. But for no apparent reason, the former president has made his path that much harder.

Read the original article on Business Insider