As Donald Trump prepares for an epic battle with “First Enabler” Hillary Clinton, the media is too focused on party unity and are oblivious to the fact that denunciation of Trump by failed elites like the Bush’s as well as the prevarications of Paul Ryan only fuel his rise, as did the opposition of Mexico’s ex-president, the Chinese Communists, the Pope, David Cameron, the Saudis, and Mitt Romney. The political class is discredited with voters hungry for change.
What they are missing are the millions of new voters and donors Trump has brought to the party, with the GOP contest drawing two million more voters than the rather boring Hillary v. Bernie bout. It is important to note that in 2012, a change in just 700,000 votes in five states would have changed the outcome of the election.
Analytics show there are 1 million unregistered Trump supporters. In Colorado, Iowa, Florida, Michigan, Nevada, New Jersey, Ohio, Virginia, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania, Trump will have the resources to sign them up. This is where elections are won.
All successful Republican presidents — Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, Eisenhower, Nixon, and Reagan — remade the party in their image. Trump is snatching the party back from Wall Street and the special interests. His is street populism, far right on some issues but far left on others. Not a pure conservative by any means, he is the best choice for conservatives on the big four issues – the economy, terrorism, trade, and immigration. Those who worry about his views on eminent domain must realize that there will be no private property rights if we are incinerated by Islamic radicals.
I met Trump and we became friends when he supported Ronald Reagan. I recognized that Donald, as he told me to call him in 1979, had the charisma, courage, and toughness to be a strong contender and a transformative president as early as 1988 when we went to the Portsmouth, NH Chamber of Commerce for a speech in his big black helicopter. Donald staked out tough policies on trade, China, and NATO even then.
I was the Chairman of his Exploratory Committee when he looked at the Reform party nomination in 2000 when we were both unimpressed with Bush and Gore. I wanted him to run in 2012 because I knew Mitt Romney was a choker. 2016 is, however, his time. His rise is a repudiation of the polices of Bush-Clinton-Bush-Obama that have infected both parties for 30 years. Their fiscal, trade, immigration, and foreign policies have been in decline.
The rise of Trump is historic and the situation unprecedented. Little did I know that Trump would change the game and make us rethink everything we know about politics. Trump mounted the summit without aid of polling, focus groups, a policy shop, analytics, targeting, or speech writers, yet he attracted over 10 million votes, more than any GOP contender in history.
Trump is an unabashed nationalist who wants America to be richer, more successful, and, well, smarter. The rise of Trump is a repudiation of the two party duopoly that has driven our country into a ditch. More than ever, voters know the essentially unchanged policies of Bush-Clinton-Bush-Obama have failed. Trump is no neocon, and unlike Hillary wasn’t a cheerleader for the Iraq war. Voter anger with our decline and the destruction of jobs and economic opportunity while pursuing an expensive interventionist but incoherent foreign policy has fueled Trump’s rise.
The party need to recognize the millions of new people Trump has brought to the Republican process, far more than anemic turnout in the lingering Democratic contest. This will more than offset those bailing out on Trump like the departing Bush’s — 41, 43, and Jeb — who feel Trump rustled the horse that was theirs. In fact, rejection by the Bush’s gains Trump votes. George W. Bush and his cronies made millions on their policies while we squandered blood and treasure abroad and bailed out Wall Street swindlers while the economy crashed.
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