It has been quite a while since I have written extensively about Donald Trump, but I have come to the conclusion it is time to do so again. I know there are some people who regularly read Listen Up who like Trump, largely, I am guessing, because to them, along with many other people in the United States, anybody is better than Joe Biden and the left-of-center policies they believe he espouses.
I can understand that. As many of our readers will know, I tend to lean toward the right. But we part company when it comes to Donald Trump as the reasonable alternative.
People who support Donald Trump because they do not like Joe Biden are one thing. But what I don’t understand are the millions of people who support Donald Trump come hell or high water, regardless of his character, his indiscretions, or his threat to democracy and the Constitution of the United States.
These are people who don’t give a hoot about Joe Biden. They venerate Donald Trump. They don’t believe any of the 91 criminal charges he is facing are real and if he becomes a convicted felon for any of them, they don’t care. Despite hard evidence and numerous court decisions, they believe in their core that Donald Trump won the last election. Many of them, especially extreme right-wing evangelists see him as the “Orange Jesus”.
Donald Trump said recently that his people, his significant base, would walk on glass for him, and the frightening part is that many of them would. It may be one of the few truths that have come out of his mouth.
As well, there can be little doubt that the folks who engaged in the January 6th assault on Capitol Hill did so because they believed Trump wanted them to be there. It was blind loyalty. Nothing else mattered. If all of that doesn’t add up to a classic definition of a cult, I don’t know what does.
But cults are dangerous, and if large enough can become effective.
The formal electoral process for the next President of the United States begins on Monday when voters in the Iowa caucus vote for the person they want on the presidential ballot. In relation to the Republican Primary, the Des Moines Register has had a stunning record of accuracy in polling related to primary results in Iowa. Their poll on the Republican caucuses in that state, released yesterday, predicted that Trump will garner 48 per cent of the vote with Nicki Haley coming in a distant second at 20 per cent.
The New Hampshire Primaries will be held next on January 23. It will be a tighter race for Donald Trump there and Nicki Haley could win it.
The reality is, however, that over the longer haul, barring some sort of miracle, Donald Trump’s cult-like base, aided by those who simply can’t stand Joe Biden, will ensure that he will be the Republican nominee for President of the United States. Whether he can win that election and become president or not, is still subject to a number of unknown factors. But the notion that he would even have a shot at it, is still frightening.
This is a man who has said he will take revenge on those who have opposed him if he becomes president again. He believes he can be a dictator, at least for a day, and he is a man who believes that as president he would be immune from prosecution for any criminal act.
Let’s unpack that one. In a recent Appeals Court hearing, one of the judges asked Trump’s attorney if a sitting president could direct elite military forces to kill one of his political opponents and be immune from prosecution. The attorney said that he could if he had the support of Congress.
Donald Trump has made it crystal clear that he believes when he was president he had complete immunity from any criminal prosecution, with or without the consent of Congress, and will again if he once again becomes president. If that is not the essence of a dictatorship, for far longer than a day, again, I don’t know what is.
So, should we worry if Donald Trump becomes President of the United States again? Here is what three Republicans think.
Ty Cobb, a lawyer, formerly a member of the Trump Administration legal team, and a frequent media commentator has recently said this about Donald Trump. “The former President poses the greatest threat to democracy we have ever seen.”
Adam Kinzinger, a former Republican member of Congress calls Trump, “a weak, tiny, small, scared clown. Why be scared of him? Trump is boring and a perpetual victim … Donald Trump should never again be President of the United States.”
George Conway is an interesting guy. He is a lawyer and a Conservative activist. He was considered by Donald Trump for the position of Solicitor General of the United States. He is the Founder of the Lincoln Project, a Conservative political action committee. To put it mildly, he is not a fan of Donald Trump.
As an aside, Kellyanne Conway, who was a senior member of the Trump White House and is still a staunch supporter, is, or was, (they may be divorced now) the wife of George Conway. How I would have loved to be a fly on the wall during their dinner conversations!
George Conway says this about Donald Trump. “He (Trump) is a sociopath. One of the things that needs to happen this year is we need to start talking about Trump’s mental state. This is not a well man.”
The issue to me is not whether Joe Biden should remain as President of the United States, but rather whether Trump should ever be president again.
As I mentioned earlier, whether or not Trump can again become President of the United States will be subject to a number of unknown factors over the next ten months. I suppose there is a statistical chance that either he, or Joe Biden, or even both, will not be on the presidential ballot at the end of the day. But that is most unlikely. Both candidates want to take on each other and not someone else.
As unlikely as it is, however, I must say that the dream presidential ticket for me would be to see Nicki Haley taking on Michelle Obama!! (Sorry guys!).
No, to me the most likely scenario would be a third candidate for president. There already exists a “No Name” Party that is looking for a viable candidate. As well, two high-profile Republicans have made noises that could lead to a third name on the ballot to deflect votes from Trump.
Liz Cheney and Chris Christie have both said unequivocally that they will do everything they can to keep Trump out of the White House. That could well be code for a third presidential candidate to peel votes away from Trump.
To me, the bottom line is that I echo the sentiments of Christie and Cheney. There are a number of credible Republicans who could do a good job as President of the United States. But Trump is not one of them and he should never get near the White House again.
If he does, there will be chaos in the United States and in many parts of the world including Canada where we are anything but immune from what happens with our closest neighbour.
Even with the slightest evidence that he is unhinged, we should all be concerned.
Hugh Mackenzie has held elected office as a trustee on the Muskoka Board of Education, a Huntsville councillor, a District councillor, and mayor of Huntsville. He has also served as chairman of the District of Muskoka and as chief of staff to former premier of Ontario, Frank Miller.
Hugh has also served on a number of provincial, federal and local boards, including chair of the Ontario Health Disciplines Board, vice-chair of the Ontario Family Health Network, vice-chair of the Ontario Election Finance Commission, and board member of Roy Thomson Hall, the National Theatre School of Canada, and the Anglican Church of Canada. Locally, he has served as president of the Huntsville Rotary Club, chair of Huntsville District Memorial Hospital, chair of the Huntsville Hospital Foundation, president of Huntsville Festival of the Arts, and board member of Community Living Huntsville.
In business, Hugh Mackenzie has a background in radio and newspaper publishing. He was also a founding partner and CEO of Enterprise Canada, a national public affairs and strategic communications firm established in 1986.
Currently, Hugh is president of C3 Digital Media Inc., the parent company of Doppler Online, and he enjoys writing commentary for Huntsville Doppler
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