Wow! If you are a political junkie, this was your past-18 months. If you are not, you probably feel tortured. Either way, no one escaped the emotional and intellectual roller coaster that was this year’s Presidential Election. As such, I am offering my thoughts on the totality of the election with a final prediction in ten thoughts.
TEN: SEVENTEEN CANDIDATES WAS JUST PLAIN SUICIDAL… but it proved the Republican Party is more ideologically wedded to Democracy than their counterparts: The Republican Party effectively committed fratricide which led to suicide. Seventeen candidates ran for the party nomination. Some ran for noble principles (e.g., Rand Paul’s Libertarian constituency), some ran for ignoble reasons (e.g., Lindsey Graham’s decision, in his own words, to deny Rand Paul the candidacy), and some ran because they assumed they were entitled to the candidacy (e.g., Jeb Bush). In many cases it was clear, very early on, that some were running to remain politically relevant for a future run of sorts, but had no clear shot at the candidacy, such as Jim Gilmore, Rick Santorum, and Mike Huckabee. Some had planned on a run for years (e.g., Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, John Kasich). Others were simply naive ideologues that believed they could make a difference, such as Ben Carson and Donald Trump. Regardless, seventeen was far too many candidates. I credit the RNC for allowing them to run, but they may want to cut out some of the extraneous candidates in the future to ensure that more money is available for the long-range run and emotions do not harden and manifest into suicidal hatred.
NINE: Ted Cruz is in the wrong line of work… he would make a great Supreme Court Justice: I was awed by the well thought out marketing of Ted Cruz and wrote about it. He is smart… really, really smart. He is clearly a Constitutionalist. His policy prescriptions matched more of my own than Trump’s. I even predicted he would win the nomination (although I thought he would have a poor national showing). The problem for Ted Cruz was that he was a bad candidate. He just lacked the sex appeal necessary to win. As one Republican in Virginia told me, “He has a weak face.” Too bad. Ted certainly has an important role in the future of Conservative politics. It would be a waste to see him continue to run for national office when this talented legal mind could do so much good on the Supreme Court.
EIGHT: Rand is not Ron… Libertarian leaning Republicans need a new champion: Rand was my guy and he lost badly, and early. Of all the candidates, Rand and Trump, for different reasons, probably had the best chance of defeating Hillary Clinton. But the intelligent Libertarian-Leaning Kentucky Senator under-performed his father, Ron. If you ever saw or met Ron Paul, you will know why. Ron is the grandfather that has a drink with you after Thanksgiving dinner and discusses complex matters with an endearing simplicity. Rand lacks that trait. Senator Paul will have a future in the Constitutionalist direction of the Republican Party as well, but it is unlikely as President of the United States. The Libertarian-wing of the Republican Party should look deep into its pool and find a more personable individual to articulate its vision.
SEVEN: Bernie Sanders proved the Democrat Party is further Left than we thought: Sanders is my ideological antonym. He and I have very little in common philosophically. That stated, nearly half of the Democrat Party voted for him even though the entire DNC Machine was running against him. That is astounding. A man who is not even a Democrat, but an avowed Socialist, ran for the nomination and Democrats loved him. It is hard not to love ideological purity, but it is also very, very scary. Democrats have apparently given up on key Constitutional protections and Capitalism. That does not bode well for the future of the United States.
SIX: Hillary Clinton is worse than we thought… and that was pretty bad already: In 2004, I knew there was something shady about North Carolina Senator John Edwards. I just had a feeling about the guy. I am not psychic; I just saw a weasel. It turned out I was right. I had the same feelings about Hillary Clinton. I do not believe she is a weasel, but I feel she is a nasty, contemptuous individual. There is something truly mean about her. How mean? WikiLeaks gave us a glimpse into the depths to which Hillary and her team would go to win. They sent in thugs to incite violence against Trump supporters… they planted lies about Bernie Sanders’ religious proclivities… they took money from despots and kleptocrats… the list goes on and on. The depths of nastiness seemed to defy any previously known levels of depravity. Trump may say some nasty stuff, but Hillary DOES nasty stuff.
FIVE: Tin Foil Hat Wearers Rejoice… you were right!: Of all the many wacky things that happened in this election year, the drip-drip-drip of WikiLeaks was probably the most insightful. It betrayed a system that was clearly rigged against the American commoner. Tragically, conspiracy theorists were proven right. All of those who assumed Washington, DC’s power elites were up to no-good were vindicated. Whereas I do not recommend wearing a tin foil hat per se, Republicans may want to turn off their GPS locators on their cell phones if Hillary Clinton wins.
FOUR: The Republican Party needed Donald Trump: None of the other seventeen Republican candidates could put Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Florida into play. Rubio certainly would have won Florida, but lost Michigan. Kasich might win Michigan, but lose Florida. Jeb… may have lost both. Trump has spoken to a segment of the electorate that never fully trusted the Republican Party: working class, blue collar labor. The billionaire businessman was an odd choice to smash through the “fat cat” depiction often touted by Democrats of Republicans, but it worked. In part, that was because it was obvious that Wall Street favored Hillary Clinton. But more importantly, the son of a hard-working carpenter knew how to speak directly to men and women who work hard for a living. That was crucial. It will help the Republican Party for decades. If Trump were a slightly cleaner candidate (e.g., no tape of a 2005 discussion on a bus), he would be winning this election by a landslide (see my prediction).
THREE: Democrats are crazy: I knew there must be a few screws loose to elect a community organizer with no background in anything to the highest office in the land. But when I saw the number of crazed individuals purposely attempting to deny Trump supporters of their Constitutional Right to freedom of expression, I knew there was something more dangerous about the Democrat mindset. By stealing their signs and violently attacking them, Trump voters became victims of violent extremists. My own F250 had its tailgate bashed for the crime of a Trump bumper sticker. There is something sick about these people and that will only get worse as we get further and further away from teaching Constitutional principles in schools.
TWO: The Mainstream Media Is DEAD… Finally!: For years it was blatantly obvious that the Mainstream Media was in the tank for Democrats. Yet, cries of bias were shrugged off by a Mainstream Media – the MSM. Such calls were lampooned on Saturday Night Live. Accusations that Fox News was “Faux News” and other stations were “real” news ran rampant on Democrat Facebook walls. Now we know the truth. WikiLeaks finally revealed what we all suspected: the MSM was always a surrogate of the Democrat Party. Journalistic integrity is dead. It was never really alive, but at least we can finally have the wake and move on. They will never recover from 2016.
ONE: The United States is irrevocably divided: Of the many tragedies of this past year, the worst may be the realization that the American people, as a monolithic identity, is over. The need to divide and compartmentalize constituencies, especially by the micro-targeting DNC, has made matters so much worse. It is now a country in which White Men are labeled evil by an entire political party. This has led to one group of Americans that believe deeply in the Constitution and another group that wants to replace it entirely. We are as deeply divided today as we were in 1861. That is scary.
Prediction: Donald Trump will win in a Landslide. I do not think it will be close.
Of course, my predictions have been wrong in the past. Thus, who knows. I get a lot of things wrong. But I just feel something in my gut. Regardless, whether I am right or wrong, I will continue to write about the Constitutional matters with which I care deeply.
Go Vote and let’s hope we are celebrating on Wednesday.