Magazine December 31, 2020, Issue

For America, a Wake-Up Call

Fireworks go off during a march in response to various pro-Trump rallies held throughout Washington, D.C., December 12, 2020. (Leah Millis/Reuters)
Divided We Fall: America’s Secession Threat and How to Restore Our Nation, by David French (St. Martin’s Press, 288 pp., $28.99)

Campaigning for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2004, Senator John Edwards of North Carolina often spoke of “two Americas”: the haves and have-nots. We Republicans hooted at this. Edwards seemed to be saying that half the country was in dire straits. In the middle of the Great Depression, FDR had spoken of only a third! (“Ill-housed, ill-clad, ill-nourished.”)

Edwards lost the nomination to another senator, John Kerry of Massachusetts. But Kerry made him his running mate. At the Republican convention in New York, Rudy Giuliani, the ex-mayor of that city, had a little fun with the Democratic ticket. Kerry liked to

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