The Trump in the GOP China Shop
Watching ABC World News Tonight now with my father. Heaven help me, I’m starting to fall for Trump, for totally hathotic reasons. Trump made fun of the soporific campaign of the establishment favorite Republican. Said the Donald:
“You know what’s happening to Jeb’s crowd, right down the street? They’re sleeping!”
Ouch. That’s pretty funny.
ABC’s Tom Llamas asked Trump a hostile question today about his use of the term “anchor babies” — an expression referring to the American-born children of illegal immigrants to the US, who are believed (by those who use the term) to be using their children as “anchors” to keep the family in America. (All children born on US soil are automatically US citizens.) The term is considered offensive by some, a point brought up by Llamas in a Trump presser.
Shot back Trump: “You mean it’s not politically correct though everybody uses it?”
Later, Llamas asked Jeb Bush the same question. ABC reports that Jeb co-authored a past advisory report telling Republican candidates not to use the term “anchor babies,” because it’s offensive. Now, though, he’s struggling to keep up with Trump, whose upcoming Mobile, Ala., rally has been moved from a smaller venue to a stadium seating 40,000.
If you want to know why Republican poll respondents seem willing to make fools of themselves by supporting Trump, you should look at how the Republican party’s establishment candidates have tried to make fools of Republican voters.
This is how social conservatives end up supporting fantasy candidates like Donald Trump. The Republican establishment has created a sense among many members of the Party’s coalition that it doesn’t matter what politicians say during election season, and it doesn’t matter which politician wins. Even if Republicans win, the office holders will always find some excuse to deemphasize social issues and push the donor class’s preferred immigration policy.
Why are so many social conservatives, tea partiers, and working-class moderates supporting Trump? How is it that so many Republican-leaners are willing to say that they support someone who plays a belligerent monster on television? Maybe it is because the RNC, and the Republican congressional leadership (among others), have convinced much of the public that the Republican establishment is composed of slimy, unctuous weasels. Perhaps the Republican establishment should try statesmanship for a change.
Whole thing here. Far as I can tell, this is pretty much what this blog’s reader Glaivester has been saying for a couple of weeks now. Spiliakos points out that the top three candidates re: GOP primary polls — Trump, Carson, and Cruz — are all anathema to the GOP establishment. That’s something else. You know who the big loser here is? Rand Paul, who ought to have had this vote sewed up.
UPDATE: I forgot to link to Time’s cover story on Trump. Ecce homo:
He always thought that President Jimmy Carter had it wrong back in the 1970s, when he would walk off Air Force One carrying his own suit bag in a show of solidarity with regular folk. “They don’t want that,” Trump continues. “They want someone who’s going to beat China, beat Japan.”
If you want to understand what is happening in the country right now, to get at its shifting id, its calcifying frustrations, its guttural demand for change, you need only listen to that message of disgust, for the political system, its falsehoods and failures, which has taken Trump to the top of the Republican polls. He talks about foreign policy like it was a casino deal and the American economy like it was steel rebar, just waiting for a smarter guy to take the construction crane’s controls. “When was the last time that you saw this country have a victory? We don’t have victories,” he tells reporters. “What things am I going to do different? Almost everything.” And then, on his plans for a great wall on the southern border, which he says he can threaten Mexico to fund: “Nobody is going through my wall. Trump builds walls. I build walls.”