The Corner

Politics & Policy

Vindictive Trump Nullifies His Own Arguments

For the better part of a year, the argument from Trump supporters to GOP Trump skeptics was that Trump will appoint better judges, and at least enact some Republican policy goals, while Hillary Clinton would enact none of them. And for all of Trump’s personal flaws, this was more or less logical; select the option of half a loaf instead of no loaf, or just a few crumbs.

But this assumed Trump would have a Republican House and at least a closely-held Senate to confirm those judges and offer him good legislation.

The argument doesn’t work when Trump decides to attack other Republican officeholders for daring to criticize his infamous comments.

Mike Pence and Melania Trump issued statements declaring Trump’s comments and behavior unacceptable. Are they “self-righteous hypocrites”, too? In the mind of Trump, every lawmaker distancing themselves from him is the real villain in this story, not him. And rather than show contrition and do anything to salvage a campaign that is trailing, he’s decided the most important thing to do right now is to lash out at Republicans who no longer are willing to stand with him.

If Trump spends the last month of this election lashing out at Republicans who refuse to stand with him anymore, he’s effectively conceding the election. The whole “you have to stand with him, he’s a winner” argument becomes nonsensical, because he’s not winning and shows no sign of being able to turn it around. And there’s no point in standing by the guy because he’ll allegedly appoint better judges if he’s attacking the Republican senators he needs to confirm those better judges.

Trump has managed to sabotage every argument and fail every justification offered for him: He’ll win New York and California, he’ll self-fund, he’ll hire the best people, he’ll run the best campaign, he’ll demolish Hillary Clinton in the debates, 

We heard this insane argument that conservatives need to ignore all of their doubts and problems with Trump, avert their eyes from his self-defeating behavior, and try to justify the unjustifiable because “this is a Flight 93 election.” Is Donald Trump acting like this is a Flight 93 election? You would think stakes as high as the fate of the country would justify some debate preparation and practices. You would think stakes that high would mean no late-night Tweetstorms. You would think it would mean a relentless focus on his own arguments for change, instead of taking the bait and fuming about Miss Venezuela for a week.

Trump’s defenders are demanding that his skeptics take this election more seriously than he does, work harder than he does, and do more than he himself is willing to do to give him the powers of the presidency, all so we can empower a man who believes, “when you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything. Grab ’em by the *****. You can do anything.”

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