Friday, January 22, 2016

The Incomprehensible Sarah Palin and the Impervious Donald Trump




It doesn't get any whackier than Sarah Palin riffing on Donald Trump, as she gave him her full-throated endorsement.  It was utterly mind-boggling.  Of course, the press is having a field day, re-broadcasting clips from her rousing speech in front of an adoring Iowa crowd with a sanguine Donald looking on.  Some pundits are even predicting that this little show has tilted Iowa firmly into the Trump column, as Ted had been hoping to get Crazy Sarah's endorsement, but had to settle for the supreme Duck Commander's endorsement.

Trump's strategy is to keep feeding the insatiable media such juicy morsels so that they don't stop commenting on his campaign, effectively drowning out his opponents, Republican and Democratic alike.  Hillary had brought Demi Lovato to her rally in Iowa, but she was no match for Crazy Sarah.  What little the media did report on Hillary's appearance was how short her speech was -- barely five minutes -- leaving many Iowa students feeling shortchanged.

It remains to be seen if Trump's circus act will actually translate into votes.  He's got plenty of trolls on the Internet responding to any anti-Trump article or comment, but will it bring persons to the caucuses?  The media still doesn't seem to understand the mechanics of the caucus system, in which you physically have to have your supporters present and accounted for.  It is a laborious process, requiring an army of foot soldiers, not persons clicking away on their keyboards.  I wouldn't be at all surprised if we see a red-faced Trump come February 2 trying to explain why he lost Iowa, ending in a pig squeal much like Howard Dean back in 2004.

Until then we can expect more brazen acts from the ringmaster, who is thoroughly enjoying the chaos he is wreaking on the GOP primaries and the election as a whole.  He has made this campaign almost entirely about himself, pulling in all the crazies from the fringe of the Republican party, including the old bat Phyllis Schlafly, who anyone that still remembers her probably thought she was dead.  I guess this is an attempt to convince the conservative nonagenarians out there to vote Trump.

More and more, the Trump campaign is looking like the Goldwater campaign of 1964, feeding off disaffected conservatives who believe they were shortchanged by their own party.  Back in 64 it was the Civil Rights Bill that divided the party.  Most Republicans voted for it, including Nelson Rockefeller, who had been pegged to be the party's nominee that year.  The crusty Arizona senator defied all odds, trouncing his GOP opponents in the 16 primaries that were held that year.  However, Goldwater's campaign sank after that and he suffered one of the worst electoral defeats of any presidential candidate.

I'm not sure what has turned conservative voters off this year, as the Republican Party has gone out of its way to block the Obama administration's every action, including most recently his executive order to strengthen the Clean Water Act.  All the GOP candidates have vowed to repeal the Affordable Care Act and roll back his bold diplomatic moves.  Yet, many conservative voters feel the GOP doesn't represent their interests and they demand a man who is not beholden to Super PACS and isn't afraid to speak his mind.

The most amazing part is how Trump has managed to insinuate himself with Evangelicals, receiving another endorsement from Liberty University chancellor, Jerry Falwell, Jr. who gave a seven-and-a-half-minute intro praising Trump as a modern-day King Midas.  Falwell even suggested a Trump Tower on campus to address housing shortages.  A gleaming Trump delivered an hour-long speech, boasting that his book, The Art of the Deal, was second only to The Bible, which he then fumbled over in quoting from "Two Corinthians" in an effort to find a reference to Liberty.

A speech like that would have doomed just about any presidential candidate, but not the impervious Donald Trump.   Who else would then gladly accept an endorsement from the incomprehensible Sarah Palin, knowing it will only add to his appeal.  A dumbfounded Meghan McCain could only look on in horror and wonder where have all her conservative heroes gone.  Apparently, even the ghost of John Wayne has now endorsed Trump.  How can anyone compete with this guy!




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