It is important to state the obvious. Not one person has cast a vote in the Republican nominating contest. The first vote will be cast Feb. 1, 2016. That’s when the Iowa precinct caucuses begin. Until then, all we can do is speculate.
Right now, the polls show someone leading by a healthy margin. (Pollster has got to be the greatest occupation. There is a built-in alibi for screwing up. When the poll numbers don’t match the election returns, all you have to say is the following: “Polls are just a snapshot in time.”) You may have heard of that special someone. As of this snapshot in time, he is the man. He is the entire show.
Donald Trump, that’s his name. I say that to those who might have been vacationing on the planet Pluto for the last six months or so. Trump’s face is everywhere. Trump’s voice is everywhere.
At first, he was considered a loud-mouth buffoon who most people thought couldn’t last. A sideshow, a little entertainment to break up the terminal dullness of gazing at the multitudes of GOP aspirants who seemed so terribly conventional and banal.
Instead, Trump leads the news, dominates the headlines and seems to be the only thing people are talking about. Why is this?
Here’s my opinion:
Trump is the antidote to Henry David Thoreau’s line about most people leading lives of quiet desperation. By his outrageous behavior and blunt bombast, Trump is what everyone secretly wants to be and say — but can’t. He represents a deep-down desire to break all the rules and come out on top.
One overlooked aspect of the Trump candidacy is that this New York mogul could be D.C.’s long-awaited champion. A few weeks back, Chuck Todd of “Meet the Press” had the temerity to bring up our voteless status. Todd even used the “S-word.” He asked the presidential candidate if he was for D.C. statehood.
If you missed Trump’s reply, here it is:
“I would like to do whatever’s good for the District of Columbia,” he said. “I’ve really gotten to know the people,” he continued. “They’re really special people, they’re great.” And then, the real clincher: “So I would say whatever’s best for them, I’m for.”
Now that’s what we have been waiting for. This guy might not be so bad after all.
Look, I’m not endorsing him and I don’t think he will be nominated. But if he will make D.C. statehood — this non-issue — an issue, he will have a redeeming feature. And for that, we all should be grateful.