The Dems thought that the 2016 presidential campaign was supposed to go like this:
The Republican candidate, civil, polite, meekly plays by the rules (i.e., plays the Dems’ game), is easily thrown off his (the Dems didn’t for a moment think Carly would win the primary) game. Just as it happened in 2008 and 2012.
Hillary, unopposed, who landslides to a win, and is crowned.
When it became clear that, as Bill Whittle predicted four years ago, the winner of the primaries was someone from the popular culture, not from politics, the Dems – and several from the RNC – were miffed that Donald Trump was not playing by their rules.
Trump forged right ahead, tweeting right along, flying in his own plane, bringing aid to Louisiana flood victims, and looking mighty presidential at a press conference abroad, where he managed to make the president of Mexico like an amateur.
The Dems and several from the RNC, fully expected that Trump, an “overnight media sensation” at least when it came to politics, would, like Andy Griffith’s character Lonesome Rhodes in A Face in the Crowd (1957), have a cataclysmic public meltdown which would lose him the election.
The Dems expected it because they, as our self-appointed “betters” thought the people could not fail to admire Hillary. The Reps wanted Hillary to win as a weak candidate to be overwhelmed by a Republican-majority Congress (as if!).
What neither side recognized that the people were mad as hell and weren’t going to take it anymore, the sentiment yelled to the winds by Peter Finch’s Howard Beale in Network (1976).
Imagine the anger of an unemployed factory worker watching this,
Or the anger of a person being thrown into a basket of irredeemable deplorables, theological connotations and all.
The people weren’t going to take it anymore, and they voted.
Mind you, Trump is no Howard Beale. Trump has at least four decades of experience at three things:
1. Being in the public eye.
2. Playing his own game.
3. Getting things done.
Now that it’s clear Trump not playing by the Dems’ rules, the Dems are leaning back on their ad hominem ways,
Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s campaign manager, fumed: “Do you think I ran a campaign where white supremacists had a platform?”
“You did, Kellyanne. You did,” interjected Palmieri, who choked up at various points of the session.
“Do you think you could have just had a decent message for white, working-class voters?” Conway asked. “How about, it’s Hillary Clinton, she doesn’t connect with people? How about, they have nothing in common with her? How about, she doesn’t have an economic message?”
Joel Benenson, Clinton’s chief strategist, piled on: “There were dog whistles sent out to people. . . . Look at your rallies. He delivered it.”
The Dems’ Lonesome Rhodes are blowing dog whistles while Trump is at the Carrier plant getting things done.
Fausta Rodriguez Wertz writes on U.S. and Latin American politics, news, and culture at Fausta’s Blog.