2016 GOP Race

The Fantasy of the Non-Politician President

Political conservatives in the US may be more deeply divided than at any point in my lifetime. Ugly infighting over who should be the nominee is nothing new. The desire to overturn the status quo by means of a non-conformist, anti-establishment candidate isn’t all that new either.

What seems to be new is a combination of factors:

  1. Much higher levels of disappointment and frustration with “the establishment”
  2. Much lower awareness of the weaknesses of populist political thought
  3. A famously contrarian (to put it nicely) TV celebrity working the populist angle
  4. High polling numbers for a strikingly long period of time, fueling the feeling of inevitability

It’s probably obvious who I’m talking about, even without looking at the photo.

8351 reads

Palin’s endorsement protects Trump’s tea party, evangelical flanks

"So why Trump and why now? Aside from the headline-grabbing attention this gives the headline-seeking Palin, the endorsement allows Trump to aggressively step up his attacks on Cruz without as much fear that the attacks will boomerang among evangelicals in Iowa and elsewhere." Dallas Morning News

8485 reads

When the Truth Isn't True

Despite the fact that the US Presidential election is almost a year away, I’m ready for the campaigning to be over. In the last few months, we’ve seen our share of drama, name-calling, schism, and scandal. Same old, same old, right?

Unfortunately, no. If anything, the Republican primary has already been full of unsettling surprises, not the least of which is the disturbing popularity of a man who is anything but conservative. And it’s left many folks—conservative, moderate, and liberal alike—scratching their heads wondering, “Why is Donald Trump so popular?”

In this recent New York Times piece, Justin Wolfers argues that Trump’s popularity stems from his rhetorical style rather than what he’s actually advocating. Trump’s willingness to speak the unspeakable signals to many folks that he’s “authentic”—despite the fact that unspeakable things are often best left unsaid.

7284 reads

Trump and Carson: Evangelicals' incredible two headed transplant

"As different as Carson and Trump are, each one represents one-half of the equation of what evangelical voters are looking for in the next president: a committed Christian and a strong leader, which is why outsider Ben Carson is tied with Trump in national polls for evangelical voters and has zoomed past him in Iowa where you find some of the most conservative evangelical voters in the nation"

9798 reads