Early in 2013, I received a call from a friend who excitedly told me that Rush Limbaugh had just mentioned my column and the paper I wrote for at the time. The column was about low-info voters and how conservatives couldn't reach them. Although Rush said he had never heard of me, he had actually quoted me before when I wrote for the New York Sun. It's hard to keep track of all the op-ed pundits but we on the right used to be more substantive in professing our opinions. The 2016 presidential race, however, has proved that most of us have been as prone to bias as the left wing always has been, thanks to Donald Trump.
His candidacy has confounded media mavens on the left and the right and most have resorted to name-calling and ridicule without expressing appreciation for the fact that Trump has become the answer to the problem I noted in that 2013 column. I wrote:
"How many times have you tried to have a serious conversation about current events only to have your listeners say, "I'm not interested in politics"? These are the low-info voters that the Republicans have never been able to communicate with but the Democrats know exactly how to reach them. That is why they concentrate their connections in the mainstream media and Hollywood and why these voters know more about the Kardashians than what the fiscal cliff means to the economy or where Benghazi is. It's also why these voters tune out boring Republicans who continue to blah, blah, blah about serious stuff. The sad reality is that these voters can be manipulated easily and if the Republicans ever want to win important elections they need to learn the right way to get their message across."
I also wrote what I thought was a mild critique of Donald Trump focusing on his character but acknowledging his impact on voters. I was surprised to find that his supporters were not happy with me, writing that while they had always agreed with me in the past I was wrong on Donald Trump. In many ways, some were as passionate about Trump as the Kool-Aid drinking Dems are about Obama.
There is no denying that Donald Trump has been able to draw the attention of voters who've been disgusted by the current politicians in office and I am as well. We support candidates who promise to straighten out the damage that Obama has done but when they get into office; it's the same old, same old status quo. We feel betrayed and angry and Trump has managed to utilize that anger to propel him to the lead of the pack.
While I recognize the value of Trump's impact, I am dismayed that his supporters are ignoring the fact that Trump's oratory may be what they want to hear not what he is able to deliver. Right Wing pundits have chosen two different directions in their commentary on Trump. Either they deride and dismiss his candidacy ignoring the fact that they are insulting the many who support him or they vigorously endorse him while neglecting to vet his character and history while trashing his rivals.
I certainly did not hide my support for the candidate I must wanted to be my president but when Rick Perry sadly dropped out of the race, I searched in vain for another that could trump the Donald. I have come to loathe the entire process that the RNC and the media have inflicted on the electorate. Endless polling data and debates have propelled only the telegenic and the glib, not necessarily the best of the best.
What I am now discerning from all the pundits is whom they favor rather than insisting that moderators ask the important questions at the debates. What I want to know from the remaining candidates are the following:
• Whom do you think you will choose as your running mate?
• Whom will you chose as Secretary of State; Defense; Energy, Attorney General?
• What Obama regulations will you seek to overturn? What agencies will you remove?
• Who would you nominate to succeed Scalia in the Supreme Court? The next president may be able to nominate not one but two if Ruth Ginsberg retires.
Debate moderators should be asking these questions and then asking the candidate why he has chosen these selections.
Judging from the most recent debate, Donald Trump has made several questionable comments that might lose him some support. Did he really say that 9/11 was George W. Bush's fault? Yes but that was an inane jab at Jeb and every conservative knows that Bill Clinton's neglect was more responsible for 9/11 than Jeb's brother. Did he really say that the Tea Party was irrelevant? Actually that was the headline of a Canada Free Press article which interpreted one of Trump's many tweets. Is Donald Trump really the author of all those tweets? Who knows? Who cares? Communication via social media is always suspect or should be.
These remarks, however, makes me wonder if he is making them deliberately to put the brakes on his campaign or is Trump really just another narcissistic megalomaniac like the one we already elected as president twice.
Republicans should quit obsessing about Donald Trump and realize that all of the GOP candidates are better than what the Democrats are fielding right now-two white senior citizen socialists with nothing to offer but free government checks from cradle to grave. That worked so well for the U.S.S.R. didn't it?