So Donald Trump keeps racking up the “firsts.” First former U.S. president charged with felonies; first one actually convicted; likely will be the first major party nominee for president who is a convicted felon.

What a guy!

Mark Slackmeyer from Doonesbury discussed John Mitchell in this May 1973 panel. I’m old enough that this was the first thing I thought of when the verdict was announced yesterday. (Original art by Garry Trudeau, of course.)

It’s been less than 24 hours since the jury announced its verdict, so the analysis of how Trump’s conviction will affect the presidential race – which is, of course, the Only Thing That Matters in News – is still pretty nascent. I’m sure it will continue to develop hourly and will include a thoughtful range of opinions (that is, not outright lying from places like Fox News or the New York Post) from “Trump’s finished” to “guarantees a Trump victory.”

Greg Sargent in The New Republic has a good piece this morning, though, suggesting that Trump’s “aura of invincibility” has been shattered. I agree to the extent that, had the jury not come to the conclusion they did, perhaps only convicting on some of the counts, ending up unable to reach a verdict, or even acquitting him entirely, the idea that Donald Trump can get away with anything (i.e. shooting someone on Fifth Avenue and still not losing any votes) would be largely intact.

But Sargent also notes that “Trump’s aura of invincibility has never been earned.” Yes, it’s invented, a self-delusion on Trump’s part. There’s a lot of entitlement that went into the development of his “aura of invincibility” over the past fifty years or so. Although Trump’s father wasn’t famous (or perhaps infamous) or wealthy on a national level, the Trumps didn’t miss any meals.

Pulling the Trump name up from racist outer borough landlord (lucrative but hardly the respectable lifestyle Donald Trump aspired to) to glittery Manhattan real-estate mogul gave him plenty of incentive to believe that anything negative that happened to him had to be the fault of someone else. When multiple Trump businesses failed (steaks, his “university,” casinos, the list goes on and on), it was always because somebody else had “rigged” things against poor Donald. When close associates were implicated in illegal or sketchy activities, Trump demoted them to coffee runners or claimed he’d never met them. The pattern continued throughout his 2016 campaign for president, his presidency, and post-presidential life: He’s never lost an election or received fewer overall votes than his opponents, the elections were “rigged” against him. Yesterday’s verdict doesn’t mean he’s guilty because the trial, the prosecution, the judge, and the jury were all “rigged” against him. He’s a completely innocent man!

In this, Donald Trump shares a significant personality trait with many of his ardent supporters: The conviction (no pun intended) that everything bad that’s ever happened to them is someone else’s fault. The system is “rigged” against them. That’s not completely inaccurate if you’re not someone with the privileges that Donald Trump has, including being an older white man with a lot of money – perhaps not as much as he’s always claimed, but hardly poor or even middle class. The system may be “rigged” against many Americans – but it’s been rigged by people like Donald Trump. He’s no victim, and never has been.

Perhaps being convicted of 34 felony counts will change how his supporters view him. Perhaps not. Polls suggest that some people who’ve been on the fence about Trump may no longer support him; the same polls note that people who supported him are likely to be even more enthusiastic in that support. So nobody really knows. Trump and the MAGA Republican echo chamber will repeat endlessly over the next days, weeks, and months that Donald Trump is a victim of a rigged system. He isn’t, and getting people who support him to see that is our best hope to making Donald Trump disappear from our national life.