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Poor Brian Kemp — he obviously didn’t get the memo. When the Republican governor of Georgia announced Monday that he was going to begin opening up his state’s economy, he must have assumed that President Trump would lavish him with praise. After all, just days earlier the president had said that the country was “starting our life again” and indicated that several states were ready to open up.
On Wednesday, Trump tweeted, “States are safely coming back. Our Country is starting to OPEN FOR BUSINESS again.” And yet, hours after that tweet, at his daily news conference, the president announced that he disagreed “strongly” with Kemp’s decision. Welcome to Donald Trump’s reelection strategy, where he is both the government and the opposition to that government.
Populism has always fundamentally been a protest movement of outsiders railing against a corrupt elite that runs the country. Right-wing populism, additionally, makes a distinction between the “real people” and “others” — who tend to be foreigners, immigrants, blacks, Jews and other minorities.