During the Cleveland Leader’s board meeting to watch the first GOP debate this summer, after Donald Trump’s first dustup that night, I declared to the gathered assembly of CLE gillterati that Trump was the nominee. Predicted it in a series of tweets and texts. Months later, I stand by the prediction. Trump is the GOP nominee for 2016. Bank on it.
How? Well, it’s getting harder to deny that Bill Clinton planted Trump into the GOP primary to destroy the GOP from the inside out. James Carville himself couldn’t conjure a more masterful inside job. Trump is pulling the sheepskin off the wolf evey single day, and using the GOP’s own base to do it. It’s a dream come true for Democrats.
First, Trump played the game with the base. More accurately, he played the base. Trump knows that Rick Perry did not disappear in 2011 because he said “oops” on national TV. Perry faded in 2011 the minute he sounded humane about immigrants, over in-state tuition. Mitt Romney was not about to be flanked on the right on immigration, so he never faded in the primary. All those pundits scratching their heads at Trump know this too, they just refuse to believe that someone running for president would so blatanlty, racially, hideously upsell a bill of goods about a wall.
Trump’s immigration/refugee ugliness is all a schtick, clumsily obvious at this point. The Paris attacks opened the door wide for more puffery, more race baiting, more Pavlovian bells ring on. Like they always get played, the base runs toward the bait and switch two step which the base is more enraged about than anything. Trump is selling them what they want, but which Trump knows they will never get. A wall. Eleven million deportations. Never gonna happen, but Trump’s sellin’ it anyway.
The Tea Party knows this grift well, at the receiving end of endless email list gathering scams, waving red meat catnip in front of vulnerable, angry, victims of the rigged game, for cash. Before immigrants, it was about the gays. Before the gays, it was (and always remains) about the blacks. Lee Atwater lives on in the consultant class scam that milks your grandparents’ retirement accounts every single day, enriching themselves by preying on the worst instincts of our loved ones, instead of leading away from those instincts. It’s a cash cow. There’s a reason Ann Coulter’s 2015 book was on immigration. Cash money, holmes. There’s still a nickel in Uncle Bob’s debit card that Coulter wants her hands on. Can’t leave anything on the table.
Politically, it doesn’t work, unless you’re stinking rich. Lowest common denominator scams solidify the base, true, but polarize the government. That’s the point of the Republican Party – paralyze government, blame the vulnerable, so money continues to flow upward toward the powerful.
The ONLY way Trump is not a Clinton plant – and the ONLY way Trump wins the White House – is if he about faces on this ugliness as soon as he locks up the nomination. Leadership is taking people where they would otherwise not go. Trump needs to take the GOP base to the acceptance that there won’t be a wall, or a door, we already have a door, and it looks like this.
I don’t care how gorgeous Trump’s buildings are, you ain’t beatin’ that, Donald.
Trump’s credibility as a businessman gives Trump the wiggle room to tell his base exactly what he did; he sold them a bill of goods, just to get their political support. Trump’s voters know they got played this way, they just don’t want to admit it. Trump is just the guy to teach them this lesson.
Does Trump have the guts? Maybe. He’s a ball buster, the perfect guy to Sister Souljah all over ’em. Nothing enrages the Tea Party more than being sold a bill of goods, watching people get rich off it, who then sell them out. Trump doesn’t have to play that game for long. Sometime after he locks up the delegates, displaying such honesty will not only help Trump, it would help the country.
I don’t think Trump will lose a single voter if he does this right, to the contrary, it’s the only way he becomes president. If Trump’s a Clinton plant, he doesn’t really wanna be president anyway.