The Pivot — Trump Refuses to be a Punch Line

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Donald Trump America

As a former small-time official who has held numerous leadership positions, both elected and appointed, I know a bit about the personalities who seek leadership positions. In this context, Donald Trump is similar to nearly all who enter politics, namely at least tad narcissistic. And based on his past stunts, Trump’s behavior suggests that it’s a lot more than a tad.

I am also wary of what Donald Trump believes in his heart of hearts about things that matter to Americans and our republic. However, Hillary Clinton is a criminal, a liar and what she (says she) believes in will hurt America even more — along the outline created by the feckless Barack Obama. But I have little trouble understanding why some support Hillary. Trump seems reckless-crazy at times, buffoonish at others. Moreover, many Hillary supporters are one-issue voters, as if their single issues, usually domestic, are somehow critical to our future as a republic.

But here’s a word of warning to those who support Hillary Clinton: If she is elected, she will be at risk of repeated and continuing blackmail based on the hidden contents of the 33,000 emails she illegally deleted from her home-brew server — emails that were surely hacked by Vladimir Putin, Kim Jong Un and others. There is no way Hillary can ever get around this threat and if she’s our President, neither can we.

Thus it’s been interesting to observe the Trump effort in recent days. It’s my guess that it’s only been in recent days that Trump committed himself to winning. Indeed, just last week, he commented that if he loses, he’d return to a very nice life. (Arguably a lot better than being President.) That’s the sort of remark one typically hears from a loser or someone on the brink. The remark didn’t get a lot of media attention, probably because Trump was clearly losing last week and most of the media can’t imagine anything else. But things have changed. Trump’s speeches in recent days have been pointed as per usual yet sober, well crafted and well-delivered – and heavy on policy. He’s wisely letting others assume the role of attack dogs against Hillary’s target-rich past and the future she promises for America.

Is this the long awaited pivot-to-Presidential? I believe it is. Why now? Because someone Trump trusts told him the truth, namely he was on a path to losing the election and – probably most important to Trump – on his way to becoming the punch line for thousands of jokes not yet written. No narcissist can tolerate such a fate. Most will work like crazy to prevent it; Obama is a good example these days as he attempts to create some sort of positive legacy out of an eight-year pile of rubbish.

So for the first time since he was nominated, I believe Trump is now the favorite – despite what the now-meaningless polls of last week suggest. Perhaps once in office Trump will bore of the job but Clinton would be much worse no matter how brief Trump’s stay in the Oval Office turns out to be. And Mike Pence would be a great president. As has been said by many, it’s Trump’s election to lose against the most highly flawed candidate to ever be nominated for the presidency. It’s a good thing he’s now committed to win.

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The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author and are not not necessarily either shared or endorsed by iPatriot.com.

Michael P. Rethman

Scientist, dentist, university faculty, former city council chair.

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