LOS ANGELES, May 4, 2016 — The GOP primaries began with 17 Republican candidates for the nomination. They were generally fine men and women, from Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker to Sens. Marco Rubio of Florida and Ted Cruz of Texas.
Even Virginia Gov. Jim Gilmore, who failed to rise above zero percent of the vote, was qualified to be commander in chief.
But this election is a referendum on the party in power and the state of politics and the nation, and Republican voters have chosen businessman Donald J. Trump as their choice to lead them. People are pleading for somebody to listen to them.
The Democratic field was smaller. Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders dominated their race from the beginning, and only they remain.
With the world teetering on the brink of economic failure and terrorist jihad, Trump has emerged as the the sole candidate of the three remaining who is qualified to sit in the Oval Office.
On most issues, there is no way of predicting what Trump will do. He has no discernible philosophy. His temperament is troublesome.
Some Republicans worry that Trump is a pragmatic conservative, not an ideological conservative. During the primaries, he defended Planned Parenthood, supported transgendered restrooms, called for higher taxes on hedge fund managers, threatened protectionist trade policies including tariffs, and claimed that President George W. Bush lied to get America to topple Saddam Hussein in Iraq.
All of these positions are mainstream, if you are in the far, left wing of the Democratic Party.
His comment about remaining neutral on Israel sent a shudder throughout the Jewish community. After eight years of President Barack Obama and John Kerry, Jews are starving for a friend in the White House.
Trump’s threats to remove American troops from Japan and South Korea would be disastrous if carried out. His stance on Russia’s Vladimir Putin seems less than tough.
With the Supreme Court hanging in the balance, there is no way of knowing whether Trump would nominate strict constructionist judges.
Trump is no bigot, but that perception is a reality that he must change before the general election. He angered Mexicans by comparing them to rapists and murderers. He angered women by attacking Carly Fiorina’s looks and Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly with unrepeatable language.
Trump’s seeming authoritarian tendencies raise concern. He succeeded as the head of a multibillion dollar company by giving orders. As Obama found out when he became president, the United States government is designed to frustrate those who try to overreach.
Obama governs by executive orders. Trump likes no limits on his own power.
Yet for all of Trump’s flaws, he has positive traits not found in either remaining Democrat candidate.
Trump has always supported America’s troops, even when he vehemently disagreed with their missions. Domestically, he has created tens of thousands of jobs for people of all races, religions and ethnicities.
Trump is willing to do what Republican nominees in 2008 and 2012 were too scared to do: When he is attacked, he hits back thrice as hard. Sen. John McCain and Gov. Mitt Romney were intimidated by Obama’s race. Clinton’s gender does not scare Trump. The Clinton machine will get in the gutter, but Trump is a master of ferocious counterattacks.
Democrats complain about economic inequality, but that problem was exacerbated on their watch, with their female and black constituencies taking the biggest hits.
Trump is the only candidate who understands the pain that government policies are causing average workers. He is the only one remaining who has ever hired anybody. He has vowed to repeal many job-killing, wage-strangling government regulations, including the Affordable Care Act.
His Democrat opponents would pile on more regulations. Both would wage war on the Second Amendment right of individuals to own guns. Both Democrats would harass oil and coal companies to appease climate change cultists.
Trump is not perfect, but Democrats are reaching new levels of destructiveness.
Sanders peddles socialism despite America being a capitalist nation. Democrats used to consider the label “socialist” an insult; now they have adopted that crackpot label with pride.
Clinton is another matter. Many Republicans consider her the worst person ever to seek the White House, a bloodless, soulless political opportunist lacking human empathy.
From Benghazi to her dismissive treatment of unemployed, West Virginia coal miners, Hillary cannot unite America because she despises half of it.
She has spent much of her political career tainted by scandal. Clinton conducted government business in secret with an email system that co-mingled her personal and professional email accounts. She accessed classified messages on her personal BlackBerry and a private server maintained in her Chappaqua, N.Y. home by Bryan Pagliano, a State Department information technology specialist.
Bad actors around the world could have hacked her server, leaving her open to blackmail. That security risk alone should disqualify her from assuming the presidency.
While Donald Trump was building a multi-billion dollar business, employing thousands, Hillary Clinton married a talented man, rode his coattails to Washington, donned the mantle of feminism, then covered up her husband’s sexual predation on women.
Clinton supporters say she is intelligent, competent and qualified. Yet she flunked the Washington, D.C., bar exam, and her tenure as Secretary of State is considered disastrous by many.
After four decades in politics, neither Clinton nor her supporters are able to name any meaningful policy achievements that can be credited to her as first lady, U.S. senator, or secretary of state.
Republican nominee Carly Firoina said:
“Like Mrs. Clinton I too have traveled hundreds of thousands of miles but flying and traveling is an activity, it’s not an accomplishment and unfortunately she didn’t accomplish anything as Secretary of State … Unlike Mrs. Clinton, I know there is a huge difference between terrorists purposely attacking our embassy in Libya on the anniversary of September 11, murdering an ambassador and three other Americans and a demonstration goes bad. And here we have only one person arrested more than a year later and it sends a signal to every terrorist around this world and all of our enemies, which is we’re weak and it’s open season.”
Sanders will accelerate the Obama decline. Clinton will likely continue the practices of her husband and President Obama, including the use of the IRS to target political enemies.
Trump is a wild card. If he looks to his vanquished rivals to join his team, he has a chance to be a successful leader. His history of job creation makes him the best person to tackle the failed Obama economy.
He has never been involved in foreign policy, but a blank record is better than a record of failure and letting radical Islam run wild. He can and should choose a V.P. with the foreign policy skills he lacks.
Donald Trump is the only serious remaining candidate for president. Americans must vote for him to reverse the last eight years of domestic and foreign decline. He is the only one who can help put people back to work, revive the economy, and guide us to a safer world.