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Assault on America, Day 315: Finding the next Trump proving impossible for talent-thin Dems

Donald and Melania
With the American media and political culture’s absolute and unalterable obsession with President Donald Trump and the Democrats’ inane impeachment engrossment, it’s sometimes hard to keep in mind there’s a highly relevant political campaign going on, the culmination of which is less than half a year (in practical terms at least) in the future.

For a wealth of reasons, Trump is almost certain to survive impeachment, after which discredited chief inquisitor Adam Schiff and Speaker Nancy Pelosi will most definitely resign in defeat and disgrace (NOT!) and the nation’s focus will rightly return once again to a different but predictable fixation -- the Democrat presidential primary race.

Judging by recent polls, nationally speaking (Iowa surveys would differ) Democrats have all-but returned to their original default positions with Obama’s veep and right-hand man Joe Biden leading the field by about eight points (according to the Real Clear Politics average), followed by avowed socialist Bernie Sanders and “I have a plan for that” socialist wannabe Elizabeth “Pocahontas” Warren in third and second place respectively. Another ten points back is the party’s biggest surprise, “Mayor Pete” Buttigieg, who must be happy as a swine in slop that he’s even in the conversation this late considering he’s young, inexperienced and frankly, not that remarkable (when you take the gay thing out of the equation, that is).

And while it looks like former New York Mayor (and billionaire) Michael Bloomberg could eventually join the Democrat scrum, who knows how it would impact the “real” race.

For now, flamed-out loser Kamala “I was that girl” Harris occupies fifth position (with less than five percent support and her campaign on death watch) and the rest of the collection of Democrat clingers and hangers-on are at two percent or less. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, who is definitely the most fascinating of the Democrats (and needless to say, takes the prize for most eye-appealing as well) is in eighth place, which just goes to show how speaking plainly and in a common-sense manner buys no love from the goody-grabbing, Trump-savaging Democrat faithful.

Despite the evening out of the polls in Biden’s favor, much of the political class’s attention is still occupied by “Pocahontas” Warren these days. Perhaps it’s because she’s a she, or maybe it’s due to her rise from relative obscurity (“I’m gonna get me a beer”) in the race to supplanting Sanders as the ultra-left’s candidate of choice.

Just like the media can’t ever get enough of Trump, they appear similarly captivated by Warren. It could be they’ve already written off Biden as too dumb, over-the-hill and corrupted to go the distance, or more likely, they’re protecting him from intense scrutiny because he’s still viewed as the most electable Democrat by the Trump-haters.

Some Republican commentators are joining the let’s-talk-about-Liz fray. Last week #NeverTrumper Jonah Goldberg even said she’s just like Donald Trump. In a piece titled “Warren and Trump Have More in Common Than You Think,” Goldberg wrote at National Review, “Warren’s catchphrase, ‘I’ve got a plan for that,’ has as much cultural resonance with her base as Trump’s ‘Make America Great Again’ does with his, and it’s remarkably similar to Trump’s ‘I alone can fix it.’ It tickles the intellectual erogenous zones of a certain type of progressive wildly overrepresented in the upper echelons of the meritocracy. It screams: ‘We have all the answers!’ and ‘We know what to do!’...

“The media loves to point out the craziness and impossibility of many of Trump’s promises. He said fixing health care would be ‘so easy.’ He vowed to eliminate the deficit in eight years. (It’s up nearly 50 percent since he took office). He was going to ban Muslims and make Mexico pay for the wall. Whether his supporters believed him or not, they liked what these promises said about his priorities. ‘Don’t take him literally,’ we were advised, just ‘take him seriously.’”

Goldberg isn’t often right, but he hit the nail on the head here. Trump and Warren certainly do push proverbial buttons with their respective bases, but other than the compulsory emotional response, the comparison doesn’t work. The distinction between the Republican and Democrat lies in their individual backgrounds and cultural reputations.

Donald Trump was exceptionally well-known and famous prior to his signature escalator ride at Trump Tower in June, 2015. Trump needed no launch, no million-dollar introductory ad campaign, no new branding strategy and no front-men going before the public to explain what he was about to say. As a major and visible reality TV star and tabloid sensation -- as well as a spectacularly successful real estate developer, golf course designer, brand ambassador and all-around American icon -- Trump could declare something and people would listen, captivated in EF Hutton-style by what the New Yorker thought at any given moment.

It wasn’t just what Trump said that drew people in either -- though his message was definitely welcome to millions -- it was how he said it. After all, it’s not what you ask for, it’s how you ask it. From decades spent before cameras and in front of microphones, Trump understood media better than any politician ever could (except for maybe Ronald Reagan) and he also took to heart the benefits and manipulative qualities of social media. So, when Trump said he would “Make America Great Again” people envisioned the types of things Trump was renowned for -- tall, beautiful buildings, gold-plated luxuries and, perhaps less valuable at the time, a good dose of entertainment.

Trump made -- and still makes -- politics fun. By jumpstarting his campaign with a rock-solid, nose-tweaking immigration message, the candidate touched nerves across the political spectrum. The fact he also targeted (in addition to the Democrats) the hated Washington establishment only broadened his appeal. Part of restoring America’s greatness would involve putting the elites to the side… or out to pasture. The slogan “Drain the swamp” had been around for a long time, but Trump’s populist promise to personally man the pumps really meant something to folks.

As president, he’s largely kept his word. The vast majority of conservatives and Republicans, Goldberg notwithstanding, recognize that his promises were honored (hence his staggering intra-party popularity). Did Mexico pay for the wall? Did he “easily” fix healthcare? Did he end up banning Muslims? No, no and no. But he did highlight and pound the immigration issue since day one, made a goat out of Speaker Paul Ryan and then Nancy Pelosi on Obamacare, annoyed the heck out of “Chucky” Schumer and got the media obsessing over his every sentence.

Trump didn’t need to “ban” Muslims, and he never intended to. But he did issue executive orders that were eventually approved by the federal courts and affirmed presidential power to set policy in the area. And healthcare? It arguably would be easy to fix if Republican establishment congressional leaders would just allow reforms to go through (the late John McCain, anyone?). None of these topics need be overly complicated in a political sense. Actions speak louder than words. But the ruling elites hesitated… and the GOP lost the House last year.

“Pocahontas” Warren’s airy promises, by contrast, have no such weighty reputation to rest upon. There is no “Liz Tower”, “Liz” brand of bottled water, steaks or ties. And lord knows “Pocahontas” has never associated herself with international beauty contests. Therefore, all she’s reputed for is being a hyperbolical liar and phony raving lunatic. Her “plans” don’t mean squat because she hasn’t done a darn thing to back any of them up.

Biden even looks accomplished and grave next to Warren.

Still, Goldberg thinks Trump and Warren are akin to peas in a pod. He concluded, “But let’s say using a lot of policy jargon and accounting gimmickry wins Warren the nomination and the presidency. What then? It’s axiomatic that she will fail to achieve what cannot be achieved. Will she admit that she overpromised, or will the apple lady follow the playbook of the orange man and blame a rigged system and shadowy evil actors working to deny us our heart’s desires? The latter is likely, given that such rhetoric is another thing she has in common with Trump.”

Such cynicism isn’t making Goldberg any friends on the Democrat side -- and conservatives don’t appreciate his perpetual implications that Trump’s a big fat blowhard exaggerator who never intended to do anything except stroke his already enormous ego by running for president. It may be cute -- and superficially fit -- to lump Trump in with Warren, but the former has three years’ worth of actions and achievements to back-up his words.

Meanwhile, Trump’s battled the “rigged system” and “shadowy evil actors” ever since setting foot in the Oval Office. If Robert Mueller’s two-year witch hunt and the current “whistleblower” impeachment farce wasn’t sufficient to establish what Trump’s up against, not sure what will move the naysayers. Undoubtedly, if “Pocahontas” ever does get elected president, she’ll blame anyone and everyone for her inevitable failures. But Warren’s type of political skullduggery is something we’ve all seen before. She’d be her own undoing just by nature of her inability to connect with reality. Her numbers don’t match… and she comes across as a nutcase.

But here’s thinking she’ll never get that far (the presidency) because her party elites are getting wise to her. Will “Pocahontas” be able to overcome the formidable odds? Patrick J. Buchanan wrote at The American Conservative, “[T]hree months out from the decisive early contests of Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina, the party is going into the semifinals of its contest for a leader and future president without a single person of color in the final four.

“Moreover, the three white males are denigrating and piling on the woman who is the front-runner with attacks on her personality for which conservatives, if they used such tactics, would be charged with ‘dog-whistling’ the white working class.

“When one looks at the approval-disapproval rating of the president, re-election appears problematic. When one looks at the Democrats’ agenda and field of candidates, the odds of Trump’s re-election seem a good deal better. This thing is by no means over.”

Democrats face a stack of dilemmas in winnowing their field to settle on one person to challenge Trump. The fact there is no minority candidate in the top-tier probably indicates the identity-politics infatuated Democrats will give a long hard look at Warren. They don’t care about her crazy “plans” as much as they adore her female gender and (non-existent) glass ceiling shattering potential.

She’d be “historic”, remember? But Warren’s type of history would echo George McGovern’s and Walter Mondale’s -- a trouncing in the Electoral College.

By no stretch of the imagination is Elizabeth “Pocahontas” Warren anything like President Donald Trump. Democrats could only hope their presidential choice would engender the types of political qualities and talents Trump possesses. The harder they search the more they realize it’s a monumental task.

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