When I’m right, I’m right. When I’m wrong, I’m often very wrong. I’ve been blessed with the former more often than being humbled by the latter, but in the case of Donald Trump’s coziness with the Republican Establishment, I’m ashamed that I didn’t see the writing on the wall months ago. I’m sure many did, but it never even crossed my mind until I watched every televised moment of the Republican National Convention. Like a revelation that makes me literally smack my own forehead for being so blind to it before, I finally realized why the GOP has been embracing Trump since a few weeks before the Iowa caucus and why they’ve embraced him cautiously but heartily ever since.
Ted Cruz willfully put himself in the middle of a Trumpstorm by speaking at the Republican National Convention and not endorsing the nominee, Donald Trump. He is, once again, the most hated man in Washington DC as many of his peers will see this as a betrayal of the will of a plurality of the Republican party. All they wanted him to do was sell out his principles and values and endorse the man who trashed him for months, called his wife ugly, and accused his father of perpetrating the most famous murder in American history.
This has been arguably the strangest Presidential election cycle in modern history. I take a little pride in knowing that I’ve been mostly right about things; I didn’t underestimate Trump when the pundits were saying he’d drop out quickly, for example. One thing I completely missed was the way that the media would be able to take him down once he secured the nomination. They might not be able to for one extremely clever (or lucky) reason: we know him already and we’re either already aghast or we’ve accepted him for who he is.
Pundits often like to look at the past and make comparisons, particularly in Presidential elections. They don’t always look at the circumstances, so we’ll do that before getting to the meat of the issue. I’ll keep it short to keep my blood pressure at bay.
Any other year, this would be a headline that Republicans would be cheering over and sharing with all of their liberal friends. Unfortunately, Hillary Clinton’s dismal 33% unfavorable rating is only the second worst in the 60 years that Gallup has surveyed with this question. The worst is her Republican nemesis. Donald Trump’s unfavorable is 42%, To put it into perspective, it’s almost double what Mitt Romney had in 2012 and is more than double what John McCain had in 2008.
To every Republican running in any election in 2016, it’s imperative that you think about the current political atmosphere through a lens of discernment and logic. Attachment to Donald Trump will have no positive effects on your own campaign by endorsing him or even giving him lukewarm support now. On the other hand, the potential negatives to your campaign are clearly present and there’s a good chance that it will get even worse between now and election day.
My initial assessment of the calls by many prominent #FreeTheDelegates supporters to oust Donald Trump at the GOP convention may have been mistaken. I’ve been saying that it would be a mistake because the party is rallying behind Trump. I had assumed that the majority, which is comprised of the same go-along-to-get-along folks that gave us John McCain and Mitt Romney, would fall in line with Trump regardless of how bombastic or liberal he became. A new poll shows that there may be much more passion against Trump than I realized.
The Republican populist party is officially here. There’s likely no going back. There’s likely no way to salvage it. The underbelly of the Republican party has united with the moderate Establishment wing to form the party of Trump, a formidable force that has no room for Reagan conservatives, the Judeo-Christian right, or Constitutionalists. It’s just about time to stop fighting for the GOP and unite under a new umbrella.
Donald Trump may or may not want the GOP’s help with his campaign. Depending on the day of the week and who he’s talking to, he either loves the GOP or hates it. He either wants their help or he doesn’t. His latest perspective (as of eight hours ago, so it may have changed already) is that if support for Trump from the GOP continues to waver, he’ll go at it on his own.
A comprehensive look back at Donald Trump’s various failures in his business and personal life tell us one thing: he’s always a victim. It’s always someone else’s fault. It’s always a bad circumstance, a raw deal, or a poor decision by others (never him) that led to dozens of major disasters throughout his life. The same thing is going to happen with the Presidential election.