The Republican party is in full panic mode right now. As we inch closer and closer to the first presidential primaries, Donald Trump hasn’t gone away. In fact, most polls show his numbers at all-time highs. If you’re a rational Republican (yes, they do exist) you know there’s no way your party can go into 2016 with Trump as your candidate and expect to win.
While I know many Trump supporters believe he’s the only hope for America, these people are fools. You have to be a complete idiot to think Donald J. Trump would make a good president.
The truth is, Trump really can’t win. Sure, he can win the Republican nomination, because that’s largely dependent upon “the base” (to which he’s pandering brilliantly) and primary debates filled with candidates who mostly seem too scared to go up against him (except for Jeb). But the general election is an entirely different animal altogether – and it’s something Trump won’t perform well in.
1. What works in the primaries doesn’t typically work in the general election: The downside of Republicans ever choosing a far-right radical candidate has always been that what they said during the primaries would come back to haunt them in the general election. Much of what Trump is using now to build up his support caters to a very… very specific set of voters: Far-right, tea party radicals. Right now the only ‘vote’ Trump has locked down is the fairly uneducated and angry white vote, which isn’t enough to win in the general election. His support from Latinos, other minority groups, and people with an education is flat-out abysmal.
Jeb Bush was right, Trump can’t insult his way to the presidency. Unfortunately for Republicans, it does appear he can insult his way to the GOP nomination.
2. His sexism: Trump has proven repeatedly that he has no problem making offensive comments about women, including referring to a woman who needed to breastfeed as “disgusting” and calling others fat pigs. If he’s forced to go up against Hillary Clinton (yes Sanders supporters, I realize that’s a big if), his sexism is going to come out in a big… big way. He will literally try to paint Clinton as the sexist and himself as the champion of women’s rights. It’s going to be a must-see train wreck of epic proportions.
In fact, we’re already seeing some of what I’m talking about trickle out recently. He’s actually taken a couple of shots at Bill Clinton’s past sexual indiscretions. That’s rather ironic considering Trump cheated on his first wife with his second wife and he’s now currently in his third marriage. I’m actually looking forward to seeing one adulterer try to criticize another. That’s the sort of stuff you just can’t make up.
3. Despite popular belief, Republican voter turnout would be low: Yes, the “base” will be highly enthusiastic and rabid for a “President Trump” – but almost nobody else within the party will be. Politicians with future ambitions to either extend their careers, or advance them in some other way nationally, are not going to want to risk being tied in with Trump. Not only that, I’ve spoken to more than a few moderate to fairly conservative Republican friends who’ve told me they won’t vote for him because he’ll destroy their party. As I’ve stated before, I do believe there are more than just a few Republicans who would rather see Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders elected, and focus on winning in 2020, than risk seeing Trump dismantle the GOP from within, potentially doing damage from which they might never recover.
4. His policies will get destroyed in a general election: Aside from his tax plan which has been crushed by economic experts as unrealistic and would add around $10 trillion to the national debt, Trump hasn’t provided very many details about anything he plans to do. Sure, he says he’s going to build a wall, deport 12 million immigrants and end all inner city gang violence in 18 months – but how? In the general election, details matter – specifics matter. While saying something like “I’ll do things with the economy unlike anyone else, just watch. It’ll be fabulous. We’ll become winners again. China won’t know what hit them” plays well to primary voters – that sort of nonsense will get destroyed during a general election.
And the fact is, the reason why Trump never provides specifics on his nonsense is because he has no idea how he would do any of it. He’s just saying what he knows conservatives want to hear. Which, unfortunately for them, is a whole load of crap based on conservative fan fiction rather than reality.
5. He’s a weakling who’ll crumble under the weight of the scrutiny of the general election: Sure, “The Donald” talks tough – but he’s not. No one who’s truly confident in themselves is as thin-skinned as he is. This is a guy who throws routine temper tantrums on Twitter anytime someone is remotely critical of him. I’ve never seen a candidate obsess about his polling numbers or what the media is saying like he does. Which is funny, because the media hasn’t even started to be tough with him yet. They’re too busy kissing up to him because he’s a ratings cash cow for these networks.
But during the general election, things get much… much more difficult. If he thinks the media is being “unfair” with him now because, from time to time, some journalists call him out on his ridiculous rhetoric – just wait. Right now the media is living in a world where they have to tolerate him. Once the general election starts, there’s an “expiration date” for Trump the politician. He’ll be locked in as the GOP nominee and essentially at their mercy. There won’t be any need to “be nice” to him as he would have no other choice than to make appearances on their networks – no matter how tough the questioning is – or risk handing all the free national spotlight to the Democratic candidate. Which would make him look very weak and cowardly by avoiding the press.
There’s a reason why most Democrats I know are hoping Donald Trump is the Republican candidate. While Trump likes to talk big about crushing Clinton or Sanders in a debate, either Democratic candidate would absolutely embarrass him.
And the harsh reality is, the leadership within the Republican party knows it.
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