- The Washington Times - Saturday, July 6, 2019

Team Trump, start your engines.

Sen. Kamala Harris isn’t just having a good post-debate bump in the polls.

She’s having a good presidential run, running a good presidential race and showing why she’s the candidate to beat. The candidate to beat in November, 2020, that is, not just in the Democratic primary.

It’s not just about the numbers.

It’s about her style. Though her numbers are indeed surging, and they’re surging at the same time the stats for fawned-over front-runners Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Beto O’Rourke and Pete Buttigieg — outlier as he is — have precariously dipped.

FiveThirtyEight.com, in partnership with Morning Consult, found that post-Democratic debates, Harris “more than doubled her support,” “Biden took a hit,” and even the ballyhooed Sen. Elizabeth Warren, whose stage performance was largely praised, only saw a jump in favor of .8 percent among party voters.

“About one in 10 Biden supporters switched to Harris after the debate. That made Harris the single biggest beneficiary of Biden’s loss of support,” FiveThirtyEight.com analysts wrote. “But about twice as many people — about one in five Biden supporters — switched from Biden to a non-Harris candidate or became undecided.”

That means Harris isn’t just grabbing Biden followers. Biden’s actively pushing away his own fans, leaving them in limbo about their candidate of choice.

As Harris gathers steam, to include more and more media coverage, these undecideds will soon enough mull her as an emerging star. And in terms of style, of rhetoric, of energy and aggressive pursuit of the party’s ticket, Harris will indeed shine bright.

Think of what the left supports now — social justice above rule of law, socialism above capitalism, social upheaval that tosses out traditions and norms and societal standards that impose values and virtues. Now see those messages as carried by the hard-charge of a Harris versus, say, a Biden, a Bernie, a Buttigieg, a Beto. And it’s clear: Only Harris has the right mix of chutzpah, appeal to minorities, and personal ambition — the kind that brazenly puts the ends before the means and justifies the acts for the outcomes — to go after Trump with any level of effectiveness.

This is not a plug for Harris.

This is a warning.

She’s the Democratic Party’s wily bulldog answer to never-fearful Trump.

If today’s America stood strongly, unwaveringly, collectively for truth, for the Constitution, for the democratic-republican and limited government way, Harris wouldn’t be a factor. She couldn’t be. The majority moral populace wouldn’t stand for her stuff and nonsense, her far-left visions, the ghosts of her past shadiness that are sure to come to the campaign forefront, in due time.

But clearly, the scales of right and wrong have been tipping in this country for years, ushering in a culture that’s decayed and a political world that elevates and embraces shameless socialists like New York’s Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

More and more voters care more for illegals than citizens. More and more voices cheer the unrighteous, not the righteous. The timing for a Harris has come.

And it won’t be pleasant for patriotic Americans to endure.

“I have a background where successfully, I have prosecuted the big banks who preyed on homeowners, prosecuted pharmaceutical companies who preyed on seniors, prosecuted transnational criminal organizations that preyed on women and children, and I will tell you, we have a predator living in the White House,” Harris just said of Trump, at a recent campaign stop.

She went on: “The thing about this person is he’s got predatory instincts and a predatory nature. Because let me tell you a secret about predators. They prey on the vulnerable. They prey on those who they assume are weak. They prey on those they assume are desperate. And the thing about predators is this — they’re cowards.”

It’s all there — the message of victimhood, the promise of the Big Government savior, the implicit and explicit expressions of mutual sufferings at the hands of America’s wealthy and privileged and powerful.

What’s Biden got to compare? A 76-year-old heir-apparent attitude that reminds everyone why Hillary Clinton lost?

And so, a note to President Donald Trump’s reelection team: be on the lookout for more black women of pitbull character to hire as surrogates for your team to fight the vicious Harris camp attacks that are coming.

The fact is, in race-bait America, only apples-to-apples political face-offs are capable of standing up to the left’s gender and race card throw-downs — of withstanding the onslaughts of a largely anti-Trumping press filled with pundits who seek to exploit and subvert with quick, out-of-context sound bites and television shots.

Mark these words: Harris is going to be the one. She’s going to be the one Trump must beat, and it will be to America’s great detriment if she wins.

• Cheryl Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com or on Twitter, @ckchumley.

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