Republicans have a dilemma. They have managed to elect a Presidential nominee they aren’t sure has a legitimate chance of winning the big prize in November. But the voting public seems to be fine with the choice. Heck, they chose him over a myriad of other options. But the establishment of the Party are like parents. And the rank and file republican is their son. He went to Vegas and partied like crazy only to discover the next morning he actually married that stripper from the night before. Herein lies the dilemma. Do they teach him a lesson by making him live with his predicament? Or do they try to get an annulment? See, you try to raise kids right, and this is the thanks you get.
All that withstanding, this Presidential Primary season has been the most strangely entertaining election process I’ve ever witnessed. That’s particularly true on the republican side. There was a cavalcade of candidates, sixteen total, and they were all vying for the attention and affection of the American public. But not like the dignified politicians of the past, they were more like the needy ex-girlfriend you broke up with because her insecurities drove you nuts. Nobody seemed as interested in presenting themselves as the most viable option as much as they did being the most memorable one; and they have a consummate pitchman Donald Trump to thank for that.
The Donald literally changed the game. He was the bombastic blowhard no one took seriously at first . . . until he started climbing the political pop charts. His brand of provocative rhetoric struck a chord with Primary voters and pollsters. They never challenged or even cared about the accuracy of many of his claims. He just spoke to an anger they knew they felt, even if they didn’t know why. He also spoke to their fears, which proved to be the most effective technique. As he began to dominate media attention, the more established, more experienced, more balanced, and more capable candidates had a decision to make. Lose doing things the right way, or jump into the muddy bayou with Trump. They could speak on the issues that are genuinely important to the wellbeing of the nation, or they lower themselves to making veiled references to the sizes of their penises.
They learned you don’t jump in the swamp with an alligator. And Trump devoured them one by one. The qualified but boring Jeb Bush fell by the wayside. Quirky Rand Paul became a tasty snack. The charismatic Chris Christie was a satisfying meal. Marco Rubio was a little spicy Cuban dish. Sleepwalking outsider Ben Carson was an appetizer for the main course, Christian Conservative Ted Cruz. As for the Jindahls, the Perrys, the Huckabees, et al, they were just finger sandwiches no one found appetizing. Now there’s Trump, all fat and full, sunning himself on the shore while the establishment sits there shaking its heads saying, “I can’t believe he ate the whole thing?!”
What’s left is a candidate that has no real infrastructure, no grassroots agenda, no real global plan (and of all things for the guy that brags about his wealth) not enough money. The Republican National Convention is even losing sponsors due to some of the inflammatory remarks he’s made. Now there’s talk of changing the Party rules, or throwing them out the window to prevent his nomination. Some offer finding a Third Party candidate that better represents their views. Others are just ambivalent about the whole process, willing to give up the Presidency and concentrate on the Congressional Midterm elections. Either way, they have painted themselves into a corner. The next few weeks should be very telling. Who knows? Maybe the stripper will turn out to be a wonderful wife.
Agenda Bloggers: Written by Kevin Foster for “Social Almanac” | Want to comment? Login/Register here.