The Trump

TrumpThe American election has to be the most frightening one during my lifetime. The rise of Donald Trump on the right and Bernie Sanders on the left both demonstrate a populist revolt against a ruling elite that’s lost the support of large sections of the population. In the case of Trump it’s the closest a serious presidential candidate has come to full-blown Fascism. He certainly makes similar accusations against George W Bush look like risible hyperbole.

The Republican party has always been the party of the rich. In the past they’ve managed to win elections by playing bait-and-switch with a proportion of the electorate, encouraging them to vote against their economic interests by stoking the fires of xenophobia.

The coming of The Trump has bought that to an end. If your political strategy is essentially a confidence trick, sooner or later a bigger and better conman is going to beat you at your own game. Nobody really knows what Trump would do if elected President, but very few have so little to lose they’re prepared to risk finding out.

The 1% have reached a crossroads. Either they accept the party’s over and recognise that their gross inequalities are unsustainable. Or they just conclude their interests are no longer compatible with democracy, and it’s democracy that has to go. One wonders how they might react should Bernie Sanders become President.

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2 Responses to The Trump

  1. John P says:

    Actually, to me it looks like there’s still mileage on the Republican race. Trump only has 43% of the available delegates so far and relatively speaking he’s not that much ahead of Cruz. So if that proportion continues then they’ll get to the convention without a clear nominee. At which point it depends on what the Rubio/Kasich/Carson delegates decide to do with their votes – back Cruz or Trump. Not sure who controls their votes, I suppose it depends on who their man backs and I’m not sure how many friends Trump has among the other nominees.

    For the Democrats, Clinton is way ahead of Sanders – nearly 2.5 times the delegates and nearly halfway to the target. So something would have to go seriously bad for Sanders to close that gap. I think Clinton will win that race.

    The other thing to remember is that many of these primary votes are among party supporters and so they are not necessarily representative. For example, Texas has population of about 27m. For the sake of argument, let’s assume that 50% are eligible to vote, so that is 13.5m. Trump won the state with about 356000 votes – about 2.6% of the voting population. So if Trump does get the nomination, he may be able to depend on the party faithful but that doesn’t necessarily translate to the wider public. By comparison, Clinton got 503000 votes in the Democrat race although the Democrat turnout was only about 85% of the Republican turnout.

  2. Tim Hall says:

    I really can’t predict what might happen now. Nobody thought Trump would get this far; a couple of months back everyone was saying his bubble was about to burst, and all it needed was for the party to unite behind one anti-Trump candidate and it would be game over for him.

    That hasn’t happened, because the other Republican rivals hate each other more than they fear Trump. So I think he’s more likely to win the GOP nomination than not, but if he wins he’ll on to lose in November, probably quite heavily, regardless of whether Hilary or Bernie is his opponent.

    But anything could still happen.