My people are so smart, and you know what else they say about my people, the polls? They say I have the most loyal people. Did you ever see that? Where I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn’t lose any voters, OK? It’s like incredible.
-Donald Trump January 23, 2016
I assume most Trump supporters think he’s exaggerating for effect because they don’t want him to actually try it. He actually escalated his actions later by building up a conflict with Fox over someone who had bested him early on in the campaign. It seems suddenly that grumbling about Fox News’ content galvanized into this vendetta involving a corrupt news organization supposedly in bed with the GOP. It’s funny how Trump started by criticizing Obama and now benefits from the Media Matters song book.
The Republican Party (what’s left of it) is a big tent made up of factions that have been neglected in the 30 years since Ronald Reagan welcomed them. Libertarians are one of the few ‘conservative’ groups who have no love for Trump because they have beliefs and Trump fosters belief in him as a person and not Trump’s actual beliefs.
This is important because support for Donald Trump seems to fall into two categories. Some people want a strongman who will issue executive orders and bully deals that will get Congressmen to lose their seats. In other words, they want Barack Obama, but pursuing their agenda. Other people seem to like the idea of the system being taken down and an autocrat being in power. In other words, some men just want to watch the world burn.
After the Election of 2012, I wrote that it’s all over for America. Either we have a slow climb out or a slide into the abyss. We already had one president in the last decade who won on personality and sloganeering. If the rest of the country who didn’t support Obama now picks another guy based on the same things, representative democracy no longer holds a significant place in America’s consciousness.
Picking a benevolent dictator is the sign of a sick and dying society, not the sign of a society ready to renew itself. Germany was broken when they elected Adolf Hitler. Iran was broken when they elected the Ayatollah. In a government where debate and negotiation is welcome, people should complain about their lousy legislators and presidents. If a single man is what’s needed to “save the country”, that man is not going to save the country.
There are plenty of Republicans I don’t like for whom I still voted. If Trump is the nominee, I may have to vote for him over a Democrat. I won’t expect any more out of him than I did from Obama and I certainly won’t have any more hope for this country in November.