08 June 2016

The real campaign begins

Now that both parties have pretty much wrapped up their nomination processes, the two chosen champions are beginning to show how they'll wage the real fight.  On the grown-up side, Hillary's foreign-policy speech last week filleted Trump and amped up enthusiasm among supporters -- in part, I suspect, because it signaled that the long dreary Clinton-Sanders battle is over and we're turning our artillery on the bad guys instead of each other.  A pro-Hillary PAC also released this ad:

Does anyone doubt that this is merely the first of many equally effective attacks?  Trump has provided material for hundreds of them.  The anti-Trump Republicans' confused, dithering, floundering response to him has done nothing to prepare him for what a determined and unified Democratic party machine is going to do.  He's playing in the big leagues now.

On the Republican side, Trump attempted a foreign-policy speech of his own, which came out so disjointed that Lindsey Graham wondered, "Are we sure the guy running the teleprompter has the pages in the right order?"  But this, of course, was a mere sideshow to the Trumpstravaganza over Judge Gonzalo Curiel which has consumed everyone's attention for the last few days.  Just as Republicans were beginning to unify, reluctantly, around their repellent nominee, his sudden re-eruption of verbal diarrhea has them once again scrambling for the exits.  Hugh Hewitt, for one, fully sees the disaster.

(As an aside, after the media began pointing out that Curiel was born in Indiana, I saw a couple of comments on one Republican forum along the lines of "Get your facts straight -- he's from India, not Mexico."  If these people were any dumber, you'd have to water them.)

They seem to have been hoping that Trump had a less-insane, more "Presidential" persona hidden away which would manifest itself for the general campaign.  Now they know that this is all there is.  The next five months will be as full of insults, gaffes, feuds, and general outrages as the last ten -- perhaps worse, as the man rages at the Democrats' non-stop exposure of his past stupidity and viciousness.  They know he's not only going to lose, but drag the rest of the party down with him.

Some Republicans are again speculating hopefully about some convention-rules maneuver that could take the nomination away from Trump and deliver it to someone else.  I doubt this will happen, for two reasons.  First, they'll never be able to agree on a single replacement candidate.  Cruz, Ryan, Romney, Kasich, Rubio, and several others have their fervent supporters and their bitter opponents.  Second, the Trumpanzees would go berserk if their man is "robbed", and bolt the party, ensuring a landslide defeat and very likely a permanent split.  At every stage, the Republican opposition to Trump has been feeble, incoherent, and cowardly.  The best bet is that it will continue to be so, preferring to endure the grinding misery of the Trump fiasco rather than take firm action against him and face the explosive consequences.

I hope this is the case.  The downside of the Trump clown-with-a-mean-streak show is that we've still got five months of anxiety ahead of us until Hillary finally puts this menace away once and for all. The upside is, after that, we're going to hang this millstone around the neck of the Republicans and conservatism forever. They will always be the party and movement that nominated Trump, the party and movement whose leaders mostly backed him even after it had long been clear what he was. The more tightly we can bind that millstone to them all, the better.


Anonymous Marc McKenzie said...

Great write-up, infidel.

I for one am happy that the primary season is over, even if some diehard Sanders supporters refuse to see that. Now we can focus like a laser on Trump (which we should have been doing, instead of letting the more unhinged Sanders supporters engage in the circular firing squad behavior).

Of course, one other effect of Sanders' (and his supporters) attacks on Hillary is that now Trump is using them.

08 June, 2016 06:10  
Blogger Ranch Chimp said...

Thanx for your viewpoint here Infidel, the media is saturated this morning because history is made with Clinton being the nominee of course, my wife is excited about it (cant say the same for my daughters though, they supported Sanders like myself), and women are past due that excitement and deserve it for having to have waited so long. As far as the debates between Trump and Clinton ... I think we know how that will go and Trump's style. As for myself as an American voter who leans these dayz more towards progressive policies because of our situation currently, I can only hope that 'if' Clinton and the Democrats do win in majority numbers, especially where needed in the 2 houses, that she and the Democrats will try to embrace some of the needed progressive policies that they been recently saying they would, many of which were presented by Senator Sanders.

08 June, 2016 06:14  
Blogger Shaw Kenawe said...

Great assessment of where the country is today in the presidential sweepstakes. I understand Trump made some mediocre speech with a teleprompter yesterday (he's savaged anyone who's used a teleprompter, preferring to speak via his stream-of-conscience nincompoopery). Someone got to him, but I doubt he has the discipline to stay on whatever message they gave him.

The contrast between Trump and Hillary couldn't be any starker. She's all policy and serious-minded issues, and Trump's all over the place -- none of it smart nor coherent.

I await his promised speech on "The Clintons."

08 June, 2016 06:31  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Marc: Thanks! With Obama's endorsement today and Bernie's vigorous affirmation that Trump must not become President, the good guys are coming together at last.

Ranch: Sanders has done a real service by getting the socialist message out there and showing that great numbers of people support it. His movement will be permanently a major part of the party. As for the House and Senate, getting Democratic majorities will greatly increase Hillary's freedom to act on the agenda we want, in contrast to the obstructionism Obama has had to deal with.

Shaw: The guy's not going to change. He's 69 and he is who he is. We don't know what the next group he insults will be -- Lutherans or Italians or bisexuals or Californians or what -- but he's going to keep on offending and alienating people. It's just what he does.

09 June, 2016 18:19  

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