Who will fol­low Trump off the cliff?

Cecil Whig - - OPINION - Don­ald Trump: “We’ve got to get rid of the $19 trillion in debt.” Wash­ing­ton Post: “How long would that take?” Trump: “I would say over a pe­riod of eight years.” — March 31 For­tune: “You’ve said you plan to pay off the coun­try’s debt in 10 years. Ho

WASH­ING­TON — Speak­ing on “Fox & Friends,” of course, Trump re­vealed some­thing he learned from the Na­tional En­quirer, of course. Al­though the Kennedy as­sas­si­na­tion is one of his­tory’s most minutely stud­ied events, all pre­vi­ous scru­tiny missed some­thing the su­per­mar­ket tabloid dis­cov­ered for peo­ple like Trump — a con­nec­tion be­tween Ted Cruz’s fa­ther and the mur­der of the 35th pres­i­dent. Trump said:

“You know, [Cruz’s] fa­ther was with Lee Har­vey Oswald prior to Oswald’s be­ing, you know, shot. I mean the whole thing is ridicu­lous. What is this, right prior to his be­ing shot, and no­body even brings it up. I mean they don’t even talk about that. That was re­ported, and no­body talks about it. But I think it’s hor­ri­ble. I think it’s ab­so­lutely hor­ri­ble that a man can go and do that, what he’s say­ing there.”

Fox host: “Right. There was a pic­ture out there that re­port­edly shows Rafael Cruz stand­ing with Lee Har­vey Oswald ... “

Trump: “I mean what was he do­ing with Lee Har­vey Oswald shortly be­fore the death, be­fore the shoot­ing? It’s hor­ri­ble.” Fox host: “Crazy.” Pars­ing Trump sen­tences is a chal­lenge, but is re­ward­ing be­cause it fre­quently reveals that he ac­tu­ally has said noth­ing at all. When si­lence de­scends, there lingers in the air only gauzy in­nu­endo. What did Trump re­ally say about “the whole thing” of Oswald?

Look­ing on the bright side — speak­ing of chal­lenges — Trump’s nom­i­na­tion might have two salu­tary ef­fects: It might coun­ter­act “The Cult of the Pres­i­dency,” as ex­plored in Gene Healy’s 2008 book with that ti­tle. And it might reac­quaint Re­pub­li­cans with the re­al­ity prin­ci­ple — the need to as­sess and adapt to facts.

Healy an­a­lyzes the delu­sion of “redemption through pres­i­den­tial pol­i­tics.” The in­fan­tiliza­tion of Amer­ica is ap­par­ent in the pres­i­dency be­com­ing a semi-sac­er­do­tal of­fice, one that con­flates spir­i­tual yearn­ings and mag­i­cal think­ing about won­ders per­formed by ex­ec­u­tive power. Trump, with his coarse char­ac­ter and fan­ci­ful prom­ises, is an an­ti­dote to such su­per­sti­tions.

Now, re­gard­ing re­al­i­ties: In 2012, 93 per­cent of self-de­scribed Re­pub­li­cans who voted did so for Mitt Rom­ney. Trump prob­a­bly can­not re­ceive 80 per­cent of what prob­a­bly will be, be­cause of dis­cour­age­ment and re­vul­sion, a smaller Repub­li­can turnout. Rom­ney lost 73 per­cent of the His­panic vote; Trump is viewed un­fa­vor­ably by 82 per­cent of His­pan­ics and very un­fa­vor­ably by 62 per­cent. Trump prob­a­bly will re­ceive sig­nif­i­cantly less than Rom­ney’s ru­inous 27 per­cent of this vote. And be­cause of de­mo­graphic trends and Trump’s mo­ti­vat­ing poli­cies and in­sults, His­panic turnout prob­a­bly will be sig­nif­i­cantly larger than in 2012, as the white per­cent­age of the elec­torate con­tin­ues to shrink. Rom­ney won just 37 per­cent of young vot­ers (18-29); Trump is un­likely even to match this.

Al­though Rom­ney won 53 per­cent of mar­ried women, he re­ceived just 44 per­cent of the to­tal fe­male vote. To­day, Trump trails Hil­lary Clin­ton among women by 19 points (35 per­cent to 54 per­cent), and most women prob­a­bly do not yet know that he tes­ti­fies to the ex­cel­lence of his pe­nis. (“My fin­gers are long and beau­ti­ful, as, has been well-documented, are var­i­ous other parts of my body.”) Or that his idea of mas­culin­ity is to boast about con­quests of women “often seem­ingly very hap­pily mar­ried” and that “I have been able to date (screw).” Or that he says “it doesn’t re­ally mat­ter what [the me­dia] write as long as you’ve got a young and beau­ti­ful piece of ass.”

In re­ceiv­ing, so far, the sup­port of 4.7 per­cent of Amer­ica’s el­i­gi­ble vot­ers, Trump has won a mere plu­ral­ity of votes in a party ap­proved by only 33 per­cent of the elec­torate. This elec­torate had about 5 per­cent more Democrats than Re­pub­li­cans even be­fore Trump fur­ther tar­nished the GOP brand. So, Re­pub­li­cans need to carry in­de­pen­dents by more than Rom­ney’s five points. Even in states that have voted Repub­li­can since 2000, Trump is viewed un­fa­vor­ably by 62 per­cent and strongly un­fa­vor­ably by 52 per­cent.

His meta­bolic urge to be scabrous guar­an­tees that Repub­li­can can­di­dates ev­ery­where will be bad­gered by ques­tions about what they think about what he says. What they say will de­ter­mine how many of them lose with him, and how many de­serve to. year was no dif­fer­ent than any other. I don’t ap­prove of us­ing cal­cu­lated scare tactics and lies to in­flu­ence votes in a small town like ours. We’ll leave that to Wash­ing­ton.

I en­cour­age ev­ery­one who is a reg­is­tered voter in Ch­e­sa­peake City to go to the town’s web­site (www.chesa­peakecitv-md.gov) and watch the video of the State of the Town pre­sen­ta­tion to see for them­selves that Mr. Vari mis­stated the facts about that even­ing in an at­tempt to get votes. It’s easy to count the amount of times the mayor said “I,” they are less than eight. How­ever, if you want to count the in­stances of “we,” “team” and “staff,” you will need pen­cil and pa­per.

Fi­nally, Mr. Vari says the en­tire coun­cil should’ve been given the op­por­tu­nity to make pre­sen­ta­tions that even­ing. Re­ally? Does the pres­i­dent in­vite his cab­i­net to speak when he is mak­ing a speech? They are in the au­di­ence, not at the podium. Sadly, Mr. Vari likes to in­fer that he has his hand in ev­ery pos­i­tive de­ci­sion and ac­com­plish­ment in our town. That is nowhere near the truth. Mr. Vari does a good job with the 5K races and re­cy­cling, but of the two men run­ning for the po­si­tion of mayor, Dean Geraci­mos is the only one who can keep Ch­e­sa­peake City head­ing in the right di­rec­tion. And that is good for ev­ery resident.

Please vote June 6.

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