October 18, 2015

It’s the last monsoon-y weekend of the year here in the Valley of the Sun. I was going planning to post about other things, but his comments on Friday during a CNN interview about George W. Bush and the 9/11 attacks forced me into it. You see, like probably most people when I first heard it I thought to myself, “ahhh, The Donald, that’s a bridge too far”. Outside of, perhaps, wanting to find another way to jab at poor Jeb Bush (which I think he could have done in another way) I couldn’t figure it out.

You see, there are those out there (especially in the GOP establishment) that thinks Trump talks out of his head and doesn’t have a clue half the time about what he’s saying. But not me. I think Trump knows exactly what he is saying all the time and not just says things he believes, but things he knows will gain him publicity and get people talking about him. After all, The Donald isn’t called The Donald for nothing – his goal is to put the rest of the Republican field on the defensive, and all the time. He knows if you’re not winning you’re losing, and if you’re not playing offense you’re playing defense. It’s that simple.

But as I got to thinking about his comments, it all started to make sense. First of all, it’s no secret Trump is no fan of the W presidency, and when Jeb pointed out during the last debate that he “kept America safe”, he should have clarified the remark to mean after the 9/11 attacks. But looking back, did W actually keep us safe? After all, we went into Afghanistan, and then ill-advisedly in Iraq, which in turn forced the country to commit it’s money and resources into two operations that have got us nothing but a Mideast meltdown and only the lives and limbs of our veterans to show for it. And he did nothing on immigration which contributed to the mess we are in right now.

Secondly (and I think more importantly, as commenter “johnms” writes in response to this post at Red State blog), this is Trump laying the foundation for his general election strategy going forward. As the commenter writes:

This is battlespace preparation for Hillary. Trump’s basic message is that public officials are in some way responsible for what happens on their watch. The entire premise of the Clinton campaign is that Hillary is not responsible in any way for all the things that happened on her watch. Trump just indirectly attacked that premise, brilliantly using GWB as a proxy for Hillary. Look at all the liberal Democrats succumbing to their GWB derangement and jumping on the bandwagon. They don’t even see that this line of attack — holding public officials responsible for what has happened on their watch — only applies to Hillary. Nothing has happened on Trump’s watch. He has never held office. If GWB was responsible in some way for 9/11, then who is responsible for Benghazi? Classified email on Hillary’s bathroom server? Etc? Trump just planted a land mine in Hillary’s back yard.

And I think in that context everything Trump says makes sense. Which once again reinforces what so many people have come to like and respect about him. He’s not going to toe the party line. He’s not going to try and out-compassion the GOP field begging people to think they’re as compassionate as the Democrats. Trump is about the rule of law, taking care of the country, and being accountable. And you may not like him but he will make you respect him.

In doing so he’s starting to make a GOP establishment that has pooh-poohed and ridiculed his candidacy from the start begin to recognize what others have from the start, that Trump may indeed have a chance at gaining the GOP nomination after all. As I’ve written before, people are hungering for not just a charismatic messenger (we already got that in Barack Obama), but one who more importantly has a positive message that combines a love for this country with the desire and will to get things done without the mealy-mouthed filter that political types blather based on the latest focus groups and polls. He’s an outsider in an election that will come down to the outsiders vs. the Washington / Beltway establishment; his candidacy is a unique event in political history because of the moment.

Trump, like him or not, is a winner, and America right now is craving a winner. And as he continues to sit atop the polls, more people are just going to gravitate to his candidacy because people (whether they’re willing to admit it or not) like to be associated with winners. And unless Trump were to do something incredibly stupid (something not totally out of the realm of possibility) there will come a point that his nomination becomes a foregone conclusion.

Filed in: Politics & World Events by The Great White Shank at 12:51 | Comments (0)
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