The GOP has a problem these days with the Trump campaign. The problem is not whether Trump will drop out of the race so that someone with any chance at all of beating Joe will appear in Trump’s place.
The real problem is that if Trump drops out because he just can’t continue to campaign while he’s facing three, maybe four legal situations which could cost him real money and/or end up with him going to jail, there’s nobody else among all the potential or actual GOP Presidential candidates who is capable of getting any media attention at all.
Do you think there’s anyone out there who gives one rat’s damn about Nikki Haley’s call for a ‘constructive discussion’ about whether abortions should be allowed in cases of rape? Or for that matter, is there one, single GOP supporter outside of Arkansas who even knows who Asa Hutchinson is?
Whatever happened to Ted Cruz? I’ll tell you what’s happened to Ted Cruz. He was taped telling Fox News spieler Maria Bartiromo that he didn’t believe Rudy Giuliani had any real proof of election fraud, but Cruz then continued to promote the ‘big lie’ as if it were true.
As Grandpa would say, Cruz is ‘fartig,’ (read: finished.)
Which leaves us with a really exciting and refreshing candidate named Mike Pence. In the latest polls from RCP, Pence is running around 4%. A number like that won’t be magically transformed into something to be taken seriously just because Pence declares that he’s getting into the 2024 race.
Which brings us back to you know who. He threw out a really dooze of a comment in his New Hampshire appearance last week. Here’s a slightly-edited direct quote:
“There was a story recently about a psychologist who worked in mental wards in South America. And he said, he worked 24 hours a day taking care of very mentally ill people. And he was sitting there reading a newspaper and they asked him, what – what’s he doing? He said, ‘I have no more work. The people have all been let go into the United States.’ Can you believe? This is what we’re doing.”
Now dig this. We’re no longer letting rapists and criminals into the country. That’s what we were doing when Trump announced his first Presidential campaign in 2015. Now what we are facing is a border crisis which exists because all these ‘sh*thole countries’ are sending us their mentally ill populations and Joe isn’t doing anything to keep them out.
Did this comment get some notice from the Fake News? Of course, it did. Was anyone on Trump’s staff able to cite a single reference to where this story originally appeared? Of course not. Trump says he ‘read it’ somewhere – he did. Or maybe he didn’t. Either way – so what?
I have been listening to the Fake News complain about Trump’s serial lying for the last eight years. And I have yet to see what difference his lies have made to anything having to do with his political standing today, or yesterday, or any other day.
What Trump knows better than anyone else is that he’s not in politics to win any kind of campaign. He got into politics because he saw it as a new way to build his brand. His brand happens to be his name. And the more his name is mentioned, the more his brand is worth today.
I love how the experts like Forbes are now telling us that Trump’s net worth has slipped slightly and he’s now only at $2.5 billion, of which $240 million is the value of ‘social media and brand business,’ a figure based on the value, so called, of licensing deals he has made for various products (steak, wine, clothing, etc.) over the years.
Meanwhile, how do you place a value on the fact that every time Trump opens his mouth, no matter how stupid or false he may sound, that his name gets mentioned all over the place? Back in the olden days, , Trump had to pretend that he was someone else to get interviewed by The New York Post.
And this is why Trump represents a real enigma for the GOP. Because he has yet to win an election except when he barely squeaked by Hillary who didn’t even try to run a real campaign in 2016.
Now it’s 2023, going on 2024, and for all the talk about his age, his dementia and his son Hunter, Joe is clearly managing a serious, national campaign.
What does the GOP have in response? Trump’s mouth.