The big headline at the Washington Post website today reads: "Trump For President? Mogul Says He's Serious About Running In 2016." The story notes that Trump has "hired staffers in key primary states, retained an election attorney and delayed signing on for another season as host of NBC's Celebrity Apprentice." It certainly sounds like he's serious, in other words. May I just take a moment to speak for all of America's political pundits, celebrity-watchers and late-night comedians, as I openly beg for such rich pastures of political amusement: "Please run, Donald. Please?"
Right next to this juicy headline was a seemingly unrelated story: "Marijuana Set To Be Legalized In D.C. At Midnight." Well, not a moment too soon, since the best possible way for everyone inside the Beltway to contemplate a Trump candidacy (much less a Trump presidency) is, quite obviously, stoned out of their gourds.
Cynics will note that Trump has teased us all with his possible candidacy repeatedly in the past, without ever actually throwing his hat in the ring. The big man addresses such qualms in the article: "Everybody feels I'm doing this just to have fun or because it's good for the brand. Well, it's not fun. I'm not doing this for enjoyment. I'm doing this because the country is in serious trouble." Speak for yourself, Donald, since it would indeed be lots and lots of fun for the rest of us, with plenty of enjoyment guaranteed for all. It'll be huge (to borrow a favorite Trump phrase).
A favorite liberal metaphor from the last few election cycles is talking about the "clown car" on the Republican side. As at the circus, just when you'd swear there could not possibly be any more room in the tiny little car, another clown pops out into the limelight. But if Donald Trump runs, we'll have to expand this metaphor to a "clown bus," since his ego is just too massive to fit inside any tiny little car.
No word yet from the rest of the Republican field, but it's not hard to imagine them privately horrified at the prospect of facing Trump out on the campaign trail. Trump, if nothing else, is his own man. He says exactly what he feels or believes, with absolutely no filter whatsoever. This won't get him elected president, but it could create an absolute minefield for the rest of the Republicans, as reporters gleefully ask them about the most recent quip from Trump. Journalists will practice in front of mirrors (so they don't break down into peals of laughter) asking questions such as: "So what do you think about Trump's idea of just going ahead and forcibly annexing Cuba?"
In fact, the most infamous of past Trumpisms could also provide an interesting campaign moment. Will Donald demand to see Ted Cruz's birth certificate? Logically, if Trump honestly believes Barack Obama is not constitutionally qualified to be president because he wasn't born in America, then wouldn't the same standard have to be used for Canadian-born Cruz? I mean, what is the difference? That right there could provide an amusing debate moment for everyone.
Donald Trump is a walking, talking joke. The snarky headlines just write themselves, in fact ("Trump Announces Veep Choice: That Furry Animal On His Head"). But he's not alone in his delusion that he'd make a fine president, even though he has no political experience whatsoever (defined as: getting elected to any political office, anywhere). There are other contenders in the Republican field of presidential wannabes that also have zero political experience, after all (Carly Fiorina and Ben Carson spring immediately to mind).
The basic problem stems from business leaders thinking that everyone agrees with them when they are weighing their political chances. In business, powerful people are surrounded by an army of brown-nosers whose sole job it is to stroke the ego of the boss. They are paid to do so, some of them quite handsomely. But the flip side of this situation is that there aren't enough yes-men and yes-women in existence to actually elect the boss leader of the country.
Trump is even more egregious in this behavior than most. After all, he's built a television brand out of a show that could easily have been subtitled: "People Compete To Kiss Trump's Ass" (and its later celebrity incarnation: "Semi-Famous People Compete To Kiss Trump's Ass"). But while egomaniacal blowhardism is certainly entertaining for the masses to watch, that doesn't mean they want a White House version of the show.
Trump will never fully recognize this fact until he actually does run, though. Putting snark aside for just one quick moment; if the choice is between Trump running once and getting badly beaten and Trump teasing a presidential run every four years like clockwork for the rest of eternity, it'd obviously be better for all concerned if he just went ahead with a campaign and got it over with. But it's hard to be even momentarily serious when considering the prospect of a Trump presidential campaign, isn't it?
Which is why I would get right down on my knees and beg Donald Trump to officially declare his candidacy for the highest office in the land. Please, Donald? America is waiting for a Trump campaign! With Sarah Palin sidelined, don't the voters deserve some sort of priceless comic relief for the next year or two? Political pundits would be enthusiastic as heck about writing "Latest Trump Gaffe" columns, I can promise you that. Not to mention "Republican Candidates Squirm While Responding To Trump Comment" -- which would indeed double the fun!
So while I have no idea what the Republican voters in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina think about Trump, I heartily encourage Donald Trump to swan dive into the 2016 presidential campaign, and make the biggest possible splash he can manage.
Please run, Donald.
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