Art of the Con, by Donald Trump - Kevin Williamson, National Review
Trump Is Running, But the Joke's On You - Charles Gasparino, Daily Beast
From beyond the fringe, it’s Donald Trump. Again. Jeff Jacoby Boston Globe
Three massive hit jobs from the "Conservative Voice" the conservative Establishment and the loony left prove that Trump is "over target." Exactly what target he is over is problematical but it is safe to surmise,
I believe, that there is a nascent fear in the above worthies minds (and the rest of the GOP Establishment) that Trump might actually do well.
And, right on schedule, a new poll comes out showing Trump leapfrogging Paul, Cruz, Walker, Rubio to second place in New Hampshire-only a few points behind Jeb Bush, and he hasn't got started yet! What these worthies need to do is to climb down from the snobbery of their respective high horses and do a proper evaluation of Trump's populist message and see how that is resonating with the base.
I am joking of course-pigs will fly before that happens. To get, what has been the only balanced view so far we have to turn to, of all people, Bill Kristol whom so many decry as a patrician and the last they'd expect a balanced Trump view from-but, and good for him, he has provided it.
Writing in The Weekly Standard "
"A Little Touch of Trump"
Kristol, after making it clear Trump is last on his list of preferred candidates he asks the unasked question
"What might we learn from listening to Trump?"
Trump understands that Americans aspire to greatness. His campaign slogan is “Make America Great Again.” Sound familiar? A prominent Ronald Reagan slogan in 1980 was “Let’s Make America Great Again.” In his announcement speech Trump repeated several times—and repetition may not be as foolish in politics as all the pundits who disapproved of Trump’s verbosity think—that “we are going to make our country great again.” And he concluded his remarks, “Sadly, the American dream is dead. But if I get elected president I will bring it back bigger and better and stronger than ever before, and we will make America great again.” Politics is about dreams as much as it is about deliverables, about pride as much as it’s about pocketbooks. Trump understands that. It’s not clear most of the rest of the field does."
And "Trump understands that Americans like winning:"
"Trump understands that Americans have deep doubts about the competence and probity of our political class. It’s not clear most of the rest of the field does." "Trump understands that Republican primary voters don’t want a nominee who will shy away from criticism of President Obama"
Kristol concludes, astutely :"But Trump could win significant support from Perot-type voters in primaries who will then be up for grabs in the general election."
He could have added: "Republican primary voters don’t want a nominee who will shy away from criticism of Hillary Clinton" which seems to be a major failing of the field so far.
If Trump moves into the lead in New Hampshire, which is entirely possible, and starts to move up in Iowa then it is all on. The obvious fear, disguised by snobbery, from the wonk class will turn to outright panic. Unfortunately for them Trump has the resources to fight back hard, which he would not shy away from.
Bill Clinton is no political fool and can see the wood for the trees as Kristol points out "Bill Clinton has already begun sweet-talking him: Trump “has been . . . uncommonly nice to Hillary and me.' The GOP establishment might well be advised to take note before they are swept away in a Trump tide and it is too late for them to get on the gravy train. Can you say Palin and Trump?? It would be worth it to see the collective heads of the media, left and right explode violently.