By:- Abdulai Mansaray
The Republican Party in the US is at a major crossroad in this year’s Presidential elections. This election has presented a mirror on the world of the American Democratic system; the world’s litmus test for Democracy as we know it.
This year’s election has put the American public between the devil and the deep blue see; choose the one you hate less. While others seem to choose between the devil you know and the angel you don’t, the dilemma facing the general American populace has never been more difficult than for the Republican Party.
Many see Donald Trump as a one man political surgery team that is hell bent on disembowelling the political entrails of the establishment.. Interestingly, Donald Trump has not embarked on anything new to the Republican Party.
All his policies have come from the Republican scrap book. The difference this time, is that he has taken it to another level, fine-tuned and adulterated it with his own brand of crass presentation, and bringing the party’s image into disrepute.
If the polls are anything to go by, Donald Trump will lose by a wide margin. How Clinton would be wishing the elections were tomorrow. But in politics, anything is possible and we are still in August. As they say, a week in politics is a long time.
As said earlier, some of the ideas and policies that Trump has been trumpeting, somehow find their seedlings below the top soil of the Conservative political landscape. Trump was allowed to run away with it, including all the inherent ingredients of divisive persuasion.
He tapped into the anger and fear that George W. Bush and others used to sleep walk the world into the Iraq War. George Bush succeeded in preaching this Gospel of fear twice. The doomsday scenarios going on in the Middle East today are all vestiges of a Republican creation. Obama has spent the last 7 seven years trying to mop up after George Bush.
The Trump camp, in their desperation to create the FEAR FACTOR have even erroneously linked Obama and Clinton to the Iraq war; even though Obama was still in transition from Community Leader to Senator at the time of the war. Phew. “
Trump is very clever. He came quietly and peaceably with his agenda. When he took on Obama on the issue of his birth certificate, the Republicans where amused at his foolishness and allowed him to stay. Now he has won the grassroots Republicans, and the Party can no longer act like one.
He has put a knife on the things that held them together and they are falling apart”. Republicans forgot that, he that beats the drum for the mad man to dance is no better than the mad man himself. Who said history is not contemporary?
Donald Trump is proving to be the proverbial child, whose “head is becoming too big for its mother’s back”. Winning the Republican nomination with over 14 million was seen as a tacit support from the Party’s grassroots; who have been drip fed on a staple diet of anger, fear and hatred.
Now that the election is approaching its crescendo, Republicans are now finding themselves in the unenviable position of whether to jump ship or stick with Trump. Trump has defied the rule books and torn up the Gospel according to the Republicans.
Trump has made sure that each passing day will feed his insatiable ego. Every rally or press conference is followed by a rejoinder; to explain or defend something he said previously.
Republicans are suffering from the smoke produced by the firewood they fetched themselves, and we are seeing all sorts of knives on the day the elephant died. We saw how Trump toyed with the idea of not endorsing Paul Ryan, in a classic playground tit for tat political dance.
He implicitly showed support for Ryan’s rival Paul Nehlen. Grudgingly, he endorsed Ryan in what many saw as due to arm twisting from his camp. Interestingly, Ryan won the elections by 80%; which might give Ryan some hope for the next Presidential election that many think he had been making a bee line for.
Obama was graceful in acknowledging the condemnation of Trump by Republicans. But he went further by asking them to go the extra mile and disown him. Many prominent politicians from both sides of the aisle have come out to condemn and withdraw their support from Trump recently.
While some have just withdrawn their support, others have gone as far as crossing the Rubicon and changing a lifetime of allegiances that are deeply rooted in their DNA. Sometimes, an intelligent enemy is better than a stupid friend.
While some still ponder the potential recriminations of such a brave move in terms of collateral damage to their own political life span, others are deeply involved in ruminating quietly, before they make that decision.
Donald Trump recently found a strange bed fellow in George P. Bush, whose father Jeb was the hapless recipient of Trump’s acid tongue during the Primaries. But as we know, a fish and bird may fall in love but they cannot build a home together.
Despite his best efforts, the paradox is not lost on the political merchants, who see his support as coming from the catalogue of the society for self-preservation. George appears to have taken a political gamble in furtherance of HIS OWN political ambition; putting Party before Country.
In gaining favour from Trump’s following, many will be inclined to interpret his decision as a tacit approval of Trumps policies and everything that goes with it. He will be praying that Trump wins or he would have put himself in a political cul de sac like Trump.
If this was an intra-party election, George would have played a good hand in the political poker. But this is national and he may have just booked himself a dinner date for a toxic cocktail. George may have tried to follow his political instincts for political expediency.
Unfortunately, even the Trump camp may have seen through his machinations and cynicism, and you wonder whether he will be received with open arms; because this is not for Tump but yourself.
If the victory of Paul Ryan over Paul Nehlen is anything to go by, indications are that support from rallies is different from the 5 minutes in the ballot booth. Many would have expected Ryan to suffer a backlash from Republicans, because of his delayed endorsement and public put downs of Trump’s behaviour.
That is the dilemma many Republicans are struggling with at the moment; as Trump continues to sleep walk from one controversy to another. The Trump campaign has woefully failed to keep Trump tethered to the script.
Even when he tries to follow the script, people realise that this is not the Trump we have come to know. While he was trying to put some flesh to his economic policies on Monday, he was interrupted 14 times by protesters.
Trump remained surprisingly cool under pressure to react. But just as many were breathing a sigh of relief that he has come of age, he reverted to type and let rip on Tuesday that “”Hillary wants to abolish — essentially abolish the Second Amendment.
By the way, if she gets to pick, if she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks. Although the Second Amendment people, maybe there is, I don’t know,” “The second amendment people could deal with Clinton”.
Clinton, Obama, and many anti-gun lobbyists have not called for the abolition of the Second Amendment. They have consistently called for the tightening of laws, to prevent guns from the wrong hands. The spate of mass killings is testament to the need for such steps to be taken. Are the guilty afraid here?
I am not a fan of Trump (as if you don’t know already), but Trump was not in any way alluding to the assassination of Clinton. Unfortunately, his penchant for ambiguity has opened a floodgate of interpretations.
But that is one thing Trump needs to learn; that even a sneeze from the President of the United States has the potential to send the stock market crashing. Unfortunately, he is so flippant and reckless that he shoots from the hip.
The jitters up the spine of many voters are not surprising. Many question his capability as custodian of the nuclear codes. Trump has reduced this election to a mere personality contest; with the electorate going to the polls with eyes wide shut.
The electorate should be digesting and scrutinising the policies and agendas of their candidates after the conventions. Unfortunately, they have been short changed. Even his big speech on his economic policies has been lost in translation. November elections are a long way to go. The Republican Party is in a crisis.
In the moment of crisis, the wise build bridges and the foolish build dams.
Staying silent about Trump is increasingly becoming a costly option for the Republicans. Staying the course with Trump runs the risk of being interpreted by many as the future blueprint of the Party. But if you are a betting person, put a buck on Trump boycotting the Debates.
All Clinton has to do now is to avoid another short circuit and leave Trump to campaign for her. A fight among grasshoppers is a joy to the crow. Germany and UK have women leaders. Is it time for the US to try a woman? Where a woman rules, streams run uphill..
With 3 women as world leaders, perhaps, may be, even the terrorists would have a re-think. They have mothers as well.
Don’t forget to turn the lights off when you leave the room