The Atlantic’s newest issue is sounding the alarm over a potential second term by former President Trump, warning that another four years under the former president would be worse than the first.
For The Atlantic’s January/February issue, the magazine published a 24-article project titled “If Trump Wins” to outline what a second Trump presidency would look like. The magazine’s editor-in-chief, Jeffrey Goldberg, wrote an editor’s note titled, “A Warning,” to introduce the series, which largely argues against another Trump term.
He wrote that for a short-lived period he believed Trump would never be a candidate for the White House again. He said this period lasted only from Jan. 6, 2021, to Jan. 28, 2021 — the date when former Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) visited the former president at his Mar-a-Lago residence.
“And so here we are. It is not a sure thing that Trump will win the Republican nomination again, but as I write this, he’s the prohibitive front-runner. Which is why we felt it necessary to share with our readers our collective understanding of what could take place in a second Trump term,” Goldberg wrote.
“Our team of brilliant writers makes a convincingly dispositive case that both Trump and Trumpism pose an existential threat to America and to the ideas that animate it. The country survived the first Trump term, though not without sustaining serious damage. A second term, if there is one, will be much worse,” Goldberg continued.
Goldberg emphasized that The Atlantic is not a partisan magazine, noting that its issues with the former president do not stem from him being a Republican.
“We believe that a democracy needs, among other things, a strong liberal party and a strong conservative party in order to flourish. Our concern is that the Republican Party has mortgaged itself to an antidemocratic demagogue, one who is completely devoid of decency,” he wrote.
David Frum, a staff writer for The Atlantic, used his piece to argue that Trump would lurch the country into a “constitutional crisis” if elected again. Frum was a speechwriter for former President George W. Bush.
In a post on X, formerly Twitter, Frum wrote that his article argues that “Trump’s attempt to destroy the legal system will lead — not to dictatorship — but to chaos, to the paralysis of the presidency, the US government, an open door to US enemies.”
The New York Times also published an article Monday pushing back on a second Trump term that argued his win could lead to a “more radical” term than the first.
“As he runs for president again facing four criminal prosecutions, Mr. Trump may seem more angry, desperate and dangerous to American-style democracy than in his first term. But the throughline that emerges is far more long-running: He has glorified political violence and spoken admiringly of autocrats for decades,” according to the article.
Trump’s campaign dismissed The Atlantic’s articles in a statement to The Hill.
“This is nothing more than another version of the media’s failed and false Russia collusion hoax,” Trump campaign spokesman Steven Cheung said in a statement. “The Atlantic will be out of business soon because nobody will read that trash.”
This story was updated at 1:57 p.m.