A review of the litany of egregious comments from Republican Presidential nominee Donald Trump, his historic failure to secure support, the mindset of those that do support him and the damage he can still wreak on America's Democracy.
The three debates are over and the sun is setting on Donald Trump's foray into politics. It is fitting that Trump's political career comes to an end where it started. Trump rose to prominence as a personality in the casino industry, cutting his teeth first in Atlantic City and then in Las Vegas.
By almost all accounts Trump was decisively trounced by Hilary in the first debate. If fact this was not the first beating administered by Hilary, in June she crushed him in a speech and let it be known that there would be more to come. According to most, the inherent superiority of Hilary over Trump was evident throughout the first two debates. Although with less snorting and slightly more discipline, Trump also lost the final debate.
Donald was beaten by a superior opponent and schooled by a master of policy. Clinton was poised and yes, presidential, while Trump was better in the third debate than he was in the preceding two, he did not look anything like a commander and chief. As explained in a Vox article by Ezra Klein, "Hillary Clinton crushed Donald Trump in the most effective series of debate performances in modern political history."
Clearly Trump's handlers managed to get through to the Donald for the final debate, but it was too little too late. To use a boxing analogy that is getting a lot of play, Trump was in the final rounds and he was behind on points, he needed a knockout to win. He did not get it. To his credit, Trump has taken shots that would have kept a more sensible man down. Let the record show that he died on his feet taking a barrage of blows against which he could mount no defense.
Although Trump was already on the ropes going into the third debate, Hilary hit him with a few good parting shots. Being so far ahead, Hilary could have just tried to run down the clock, to her credit she walked to the center of the ring and traded blows. He called her "nasty" and she called him "Putin's puppet" he then repeated three times, with all the angry frustration of an exasperated ten year old, "no your the puppet".
At the end of the debate she left him looking dazed standing motionless at his podium.
Lets take a look at the litany of egregious qualities that define the buffoon who was vying to be in charge of the world's most potent nuclear arsenal.
Numerous press reports make it clear that much of what Trump says is a lie. In fact it would be warranted to say that he is a pathological liar. According to the Huffington Post, "Donald Trump lies as fast as he can speak," by their count he lied 16 times in the first debate while Hilary Clinton lied once.
Politico is unequivocal in their assessment that Trump has no peer when it comes to obfuscation. They fact-checked what Trump and Clinton said about energy during the first debate and they said: "The conclusion is inescapable: Trump’s mishandling of facts and propensity for exaggeration so greatly exceed Clinton’s as to make the comparison almost ludicrous...Trump has built a cottage industry around stretching the truth."
According to a five day analysis from POLITICO, Trump averaged about one falsehood every three minutes and 15 seconds over nearly five hours of remarks. That amounts to 87 erroneous statements in five days or one untruth every 3.25 minutes.
On the subject of Trump's subterfuge in the most recent debate, CNN released a video which shows four of his bold faced lies in his own words.
Insults and attacks
Trump started his primary campaign by insulting all 17 of the people he was running against. He also vented his contempt at venerable Republicans like John McCain. He then went on to make a series of nasty comments at the RNC convention saying that he would put an end to regulations generally and climate action specifically.
Trump has attacked Mexicans, blacks, women, Democrats, Republicans, judges, sheriffs, sound engineers and even the parents of a Gold star family. His racist diatribes and sexist rants seem surreal and they are on a scale that is unprecedented from a modern day presidential contender.
Trump has also shown himself to more than happy to attack members of his own party. He recently savaged Paul Ryan the speaker of the house and the third most powerful man in America. Trump has also repeatedly attacked the GOP establishment.
The list of egregious comments from Trump is too long to repeat in full. Trump's recent iteration of rape culture, and dismissal of the same as "locker room talk," was for some the final affront.
Throughout the campaign Trump repeatedly suggested he has not done anything wrong and he attributed blame to the media (although most Americans get their news from Fox). Trump is so narcissistic that he is incapable of seeing what other people see not matter how often he is told.
While he is celebrated as a businessman he has left a trail of unpaid vendors and multiple business have been forced into bankruptcy under his stewardship. Even Tony Schwartz, the person who ghost wrote Trump's popular book, "The Art of the Deal" has denounced the Republican contender, disagreeing with the myth of the capable business man he created.
While Trump decries the fact that manufacturing jobs are moving out of the US, his various business enterprises have done the same. His clothing lines are manufactured outside of the US and as Hilary pointed out even the steel and aluminum used in his buildings was purchased from Chinese suppliers.
The dark specter of a Trump presidency is receding, and his brand is waning along with it. As relayed in a Fortune article by Geoff Colvin, Mark Cuban and others are saying Trump's brand is in trouble. In fact, another Fortune article by Michelle Toh quotes Cuban as saying Trump's brand may be even worse than Bernie Madoff. The gold plating on the Trump brand has been tarnished and some of the world's most prestigious real estate may soon be looking to change their signage.
Trump sniffed and snorted his way through three debates. His puerile facial gestures were a constant throughout. During the first debate he interrupted Clinton 25 times in the first 26 minutes and more than 50 times over the course of the evening. During the second debate he loomed over Hilary like some kind of stalker. In the third and final debate he did everything in his power to appear presidential, but after about half an hour he returned to his natural state, repeatedly interrupting, corroborating the perception that he is a bore with the social graces of a water buffalo.
Endorsements and rejections
Trump has not only failed to win the presidency, he has failed in spectacular fashion. He failed to win an endorsement from any living president, and he made modern history by failing to secure a single endorsement from any major newspaper. He has been actively opposed by key military and intelligence officials and many Republicans. He is commonly described as a danger and a threat to national security.
He is widely disliked by many in his own party. In May Trump was snubbed by New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez the nation's only Hispanic female Republican governor. After he was caught talking about groping married women, there was another mass exodus of Republican faithfuls. Sen. John McCain, House Speaker Paul Ryan. Utah Gov. Gary Herbert all withdrew their tepid support for the Republican candidate, as did former Utah governor and presidential candidate Jon Huntsman.
Tens of thousands have signed petitions to hold a vote on whether or not to officially declare Donald Trump BANNED and activists across America are organizing to do the same. Similar sentiments have been expressed in foreign countries like the UK.
Some of those who supported Trump early on have changed their minds after getting to know him a bit better. Billionaire Mark Cuban is one such high profile example.
His own party has largely deserted him. This includes House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) who called Trump, "...a race-baiting, xenophobic bigot." Even people who were once on team Trump have abandoned him. Trump's candidacy was rejected by lifelong Republicans including Daniel Akerson, former CEO and chairman of General Motors who said that he will vote Democrat for the firs time in his life.
Trump’s former policy coordinator, Pratik Chougule bluntly announced:
"Under no circumstances will I support Donald Trump for president." Writing on LinkedIn, the managing editor of the National Interest stated: "I regret my decision last April to join the campaign as policy coordinator. Although I left the campaign in August for a variety of reasons, I wish that I had done so sooner and spoken out more forcefully against a candidate who embodies the worst excesses of our culture."It would be wrong to say that Trump has no endorsements, he was endorsed by the KKK, the NRA, the regime of North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, ISIS, Russian President Vladimir Putin and the Russian people. In fact, the Independent reports that Hilary would beat Trump in every nation in the world except Russia.
How does he have any support?
The race may be all but over, but some hard truths remain. Despite all that they have seen from Trump, at least a quarter of Americans continue to support him. So how could a man who says that he wants to deport Mexicans, ban Muslims and kill the children of enemy combatants be taken seriously? How can Americans even consider a man who ran a scam university and cheated veterans out of their charity money, as the next president of the United States? This is a man who has picked Putin as one of his favorite leaders and Trump even invited Russia to engage in more espionage (a total of 17 intelligence and military agencies say Putin was behind espionage that sought to interfere with the American election). He has mocked the handicapped, and he thinks not paying taxes makes him smart. His pettiness knows no bounds, as revealed by his self absorbed feud with a beauty queen.
As Trump said to the people of Iowa, a state he is likely to win, "How Stupid are the people in Iowa." Some neuroscientists have offered a perspective that reinforces Trump's own words. Their explanation about why so many Americans continue to support Trump is a scathing indictment of his base. Essentially they say that Trump supporters may be too dumb to realize they are dumb.
With more than a quarter of Americans saying that the sun revolves around the Earth it is no surprise that a similar number of Americans have pledged their undying loyalty to Trump.
On Meet the Press, GOP strategist Steve Schmidt did an artful job of summarizing Trump's candidacy:
"[Trump] has no idea what he is talking about from a policy perspective, he lacks the requisite dignity required of someone who wishes to be the head of state of the government of the United States, and someone who lacks the capacity to be the commander and chief of the most power military and the worlds most potent nuclear arsenal.... the presidential race is effectively over, Hilary Clinton will be the 45th president of the United States..."Destroying democracy
Trump's formal political career is over, he is no longer a serious contender for president. However, Trump's ability to further harm the institution of democracy and continue to tear the fabric of American society is far from over. He continues to suggest that the election is rigged and in the final debate he would not commit to accepting the election results when he loses. As his prospects of winning the election are all but dashed, Trump may play up his dangerous role as an agitator.
It is appalling that Trump is feeding his base the kind of rhetoric that leads to violence. He is falsely saying, without any evidence, that the electoral process is rigged. However, As the Democratic nominee and soon to be president, Hilary pointed out in the third and final debate, when things don't go his way Donald has said everything is rigged from the presidential election to the fact that Celebrity Apprentice did not win an Emmy.
Perhaps the only reason that Trump ran for president was to build support for his forthcoming media enterprise. As reported by Raw Story, Trump's son-in-law is already working to set up Trump's new media brand. These efforts put his opportunistic self-interest on display. His absurd populism is designed to make Fox look like socialist propaganda from the intelligentsia. He knows there is an un-served market for divisive politics that will further polarize an already divided country.
Trump's campaign is a beacon for those disaffected by the erosion of white male privilege and this is the core demographic his media channel will be courting. In the process of pandering to these people Trump's campaign has been more harmful to the institution of democracy than any US political campaign that preceded him.
Hilary will be the 45th President of the United States. The only question that remains is just how bad the Republican blood letting will be. Down-ticket GOP candidates are understandably worried as they know that they will likely lose the Senate and perhaps even the House.
This election Americans are faced with a binary choice. The only sane option is to decisively kick Trump to the curb. Republicans should also be held responsible as they are not a victim of Trump they created him. The fossil fuel industry supported Republican obstructionism and the Koch brothers helped lay the foundation for the Tea Party. These are the reasons why there is legislative gridlock. Americans are quiet rightly disgusted with politics, and this is the mood that gave rise to Donald Trump.
The best way to hold the GOP accountable is by voting. Republicans will continue to hoodwink the public unless Americans send a strong message. If Americans want to save their democracy, they must deliver a landslide defeat that marginalizes Republicans in all four branches of government.
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