The Presidential Election of 2020: Donald Trump and the Crisis of Democracy places the election of 2020 within the context of the Trump presidency, a chaotic and tense time in American politics and a dangerous one. The election is analyzed in depth and its meaning for the state of American society is made clear. A major theme in the book is a critique of Donald Trump's leadership, his incompetence in office, his appeal to followers and the danger this has proven to represent. Among other things, he was accused of mental instability during his presidency. Yet he received the second highest vote total in American history, exceeded only by winning candidate Joe Biden's.
Trump was impeached twice for his actions in office but both times not held responsible for what he had done by a Republican-controlled Senate.
The election is placed in an ongoing context. It was followed by strenuous attempts by Trump and associates to have states reverse their results and declare him the winner and by the Trump-organized seditious assault on the Capitol in which five people died. The objective was to force Vice President Mike Pence, who was chairing a Joint Session of Congress, normally a formality, to instead reject the Electoral College vote outcome. Pence would not do it. His life and that of Speaker Nancy Pelosi were threatened by the rioters.
The threat of a coup, a new development in American politics, and one led by Trump and others who share his views, remains. Meanwhile President Joe Biden in his efforts to reconstruct America has introduced the most ambitious policy agenda since the New Deal.
William Crotty is Thomas P. O’Neill, Jr. Chair in Public Life and Professor Emeritus of Political
Science at Northeastern University.
Chapter 1: Donald Trump and His Presidency by William Crotty
Chapter 2: Donald Trump: A Personal and Political Profile and Impact on the Presidential
Election of 2020 by William Crotty
Chapter 3: The 2020 Presidential Nominations by Barbara Norrander
Chapter 4: Stability and Change in the 2020 Election: An Election Like No Other by Arthur C.
Chapter 5: The 2020 Election and the States: Federalism Takes the Stage by John J. McGlennon
Chapter 6: Women and the 2020 Election: Breaking Down Barriers by Susan A. MacManus and
Amy N. Benner
Chapter 7: Democracy, When? The Democratic Vision of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the
Political Moment of Race in American Politics and the Political Science Discipline by
Shayla C. Nunnally
Chapter 8: Environmental Issues in the 2020 Campaign by John C. Berg
Chapter 9: Health Care and the 2020 Elections: Three Competing Visions Plus a Pandemic by
Thomas R. Marshall
Chapter 10: A Nation in Crisis by John Kenneth White
Understanding the 2020 presidential election is a vital task not simply for scholars, but for citizens in general. William Crotty and the other contributors to this new study provide a fine starting point for reflection and analysis.
Professor Crotty once again has marshaled the talents of ten distinguished scholars covering the campaigns, voting patterns, and major issues of the 2020 presidential election—one of the most consequential elections in U.S. history, including the tumultuous aftermath. Clear, crisp writing throughout makes this book scholarly and entertaining for audiences both inside and outside the classroom.