In the history of mankind, many republics have risen, have flourished for a less or greater time, and then have fallen because their citizens lost the power of governing themselves and thereby of governing their state. TR


Lucky Trump: He Has the Most Perfectly Awful Group of Opponents He Could Ask For

From a piece I have running on the “Think” section of the NBC News website:

Among the most enviable and least recognized qualities of a presidential candidate is something they share with lottery winners and bowling champions: a talent for dumb luck. And for those politicians blessed with this wholly undeserved and unearned gift, the most valuable form of it, the lucky break coveted over all others, is a lousy opponent.

President Donald Trump demonstrated such talent in abundance in 2016 when he faced the widely despised Hillary Clinton. For anyone who had trouble voting for Trump because of various concerns about his character, the alternative of punching a chad for Clinton made things much easier.

Trump looks all set to get lucky again once Democrats decide which of the current forlorn crop of candidates they want as their nominee in 2020. One, Andrew Yang, stooped so low during Thursday night’s Democratic debate in Houston that he decided to start buying votes, saying his campaign would shell out $1,000 a month for a year to 10 families.

Trump is but the latest in a history of presidential candidates bestowed by fortune with the perfect foil.

Ronald Reagan had Walter Mondale, who promised to raise taxes, the political equivalent of a hockey team putting the goalie on offense. George H.W. Bush had Michael Dukakis, a diminutive, robotic individual who offered a dispassionate answer about the death penalty when asked about his wife being raped and murdered and who staged a ludicrous photo op swallowed up by an M1 Abrams tank.

This is not to say Trump won’t earn the presidency. Or that he did not in 2016, either. He adroitly tapped into a gold mine of discontent with the established order, understanding the anger in the hinterland far better than the professional politicians and pundits who couldn’t see the problems with the establishment because they were part of it. But he also got lucky with his opponent — and he barely won.

You can read the rest of the piece on the NBC News site here.

11 thoughts on “Lucky Trump: He Has the Most Perfectly Awful Group of Opponents He Could Ask For”

  1. First: Nice opinion piece. The rad liberals will probably rip it to pieces, but I like it.

    Second: Bowling champions are hardly lucky. It takes thousands of games, trainers, and a determination to be precise to win at bowling.

    Third: MrTrump lucky? OK, the Dem candidates all seem to have fallen into group think or some kind of mind failure so that they all are pushing the same projects.
    We could say DJT was lucky to be born into a wealthy family, to inherit a fortune, but it’s what he did with his ‘luck’ that makes it more his cunning, cleverness, and a willingness to work hard to gain a successful business life.
    His ‘luck’ must have extended to the lineup of Repub candidates as he picked them off, one by one…like a turkey shoot. Then ‘luck’ was to run against a well-known woman with a magic name who had everyone but the voters cheering her on.
    MrTrump won the election because we already knew him better than we knew Hillary. We knew all about his skirt-chasing, his business losses, his mistakes, all of it, but we’re not perfect either and it was time to change everything.

    1. What have we really known about other candidates in the past? Not much. I for one am so tired of the term “he’s not perfect”, but… I for one never say that, because frankly I’ve NEVER known a President who is. My husband says that and it annoys me. I’m just grateful that Trump stepped up to the plate and ran. Where would be be with the tent wearing Hillary now?

  2. “…and he barely won.” Although it was close electorally, Trump won nearly every battleground state that was up for grabs, including: Florida, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin – often outperforming the polling averages. Obama won all four of these states in 2012. Pennsylvania and Michigan had not voted for a Republican president since George H.W. Bush in 1988, while Wisconsin had not gone Republican since 1984.

    He defeated not only the Clinton machine, but virtually the entire mainstream media lined up against him. This was the result of a strong ground game and aggressive campaigning, not ‘luck.’

      1. I saw lots of good games at the Astrodome between the Oilers ans Steelers. The Steelers always won but the Oilers gave them a good hand full. I like Terry Bradshaw.

        I don’t think the Cowboys allow the kneeling. MLB baseball players do not kneel.

    1. Oh, please. The NHL preseason officially drops the puck tomorrow afternoon, when the Desert Dogs invade the Strip. (Arizona Coyotes at Vegas Golden Knights, in case you don’t get the slang and/or need official nomenclature.)

      And then on Monday, you know it’s officially the preseason with New Jersey doing two split squad games, while a feline fracas erupts in the Volunteer State as the Panthers roll in for a day-night doubleheader against the homestanding Predators.

      Hockey is back.

      And to bring this back on topic: of the three three Washington Capitals to take a pass on the White House visit last year, Brett Connolly is now playing for the Panthers; Braden Holtby is in the last year of his contract with Washington, and could end up as trade bait; and Devante Smith-Pelley is, off all things, on a PTO with the Calgary Flames.

    2. I find it puzzling that anyone could care about these professionals who change teams at the drop of a dollar. There’s no real local connection to create loyalty. I’d rather watch my high school play football. Those are real local kids and represent my town.

      I realize each to his taste, but I am puzzled and intrigued by the NFL loyalties.

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