Guess What? Donald Trump ain’t goin’ away anytime soon.
He is more popular today among Republicans than ever before; and more despised by the lunatic Left than during his first term in office.
Yes, you read that correctly, first term.
The media sorely miss “The Donald” as their viewings and clicks shrink. So, like non-president Biden, they continue to attack and mock him even though he is not an elected official or in congressional opposition. Hell, he’s not even allowed on Twitter or Facebook!
Yet the one thing about Trump that is hard to dismiss is his looming omnipresence. Love him or loathe him, it seems no one can get enough of him. Even the late-night less-than-comedians are at a loss without Trump to poke and laugh at. And still 95 percent of the media remains in outright, crazy opposition to Trump. No longer journalists by any definition of the term, they have become mad, rabid advocates, biased and obsessed in their vitriolic hatred, aired daily on fake news, psycho MSLSD and the Criminal News Network (CNN).
What we really need is a typology of Trumpism to see where people dot the current political landscape taking into account their relationship or distance from our 45th president, who might just be our 47th as well.
This is a feat, by the way, not accomplished since Grover Cleveland, who served as the 22nd and 24th president of the United States from 1885 to 1889 and from 1893 to 1897. Of course, Cleveland remains the only president in American history to serve two nonconsecutive terms in office.
But for now, on with our typology.
The Left used to consist of liberals (80 percent), progressives (19 percent), and socialists, who were an infinitesimally tiny minority. Bill Clinton’s triangulation was meant as a triumph of the liberals over the progressives, the same recipe applied after the McGovern debacle of 1974. The Fabian wing of the socialists never stopped working, and things have changed and shifted completely, so that today only socialists and progressives count.
The old-line Democrats are dying off or have gone on to a fate like that of flies on sticky paper. (Andrew Cuomo, anyone?) And the lunatic, racist, America-hating Marxist woke Left all loudly detest Trump. He is the very embodiment of everything they stand and wail against. They want his white body dead, imprisoned, or impeached, preferably all of the above. Honestly, while they fear his sheer effectiveness and strength compared to that of weak Joe, they know that they sorely need him back to focus their own derangement, again. Another hoax will be manufactured, no doubt.
An exception in this mix worth mentioning is unionized labor that composes the plurality of Democratic activists (minus teachers). Much like evangelicals in the Republican Party, their faction accepted a secondary role in the official hierarchies. This despite their numeric advantage, to say nothing of the superpowers bestowed on unions after Citizens United. Noteworthy is that Trump is eating into that union blue collar voting bloc, “big time.”
Independents, by definition, are undecided but some 30 percent of the population identify that way. Recent nationwide electoral results show they are breaking Republican and have a stomach for Trump’s policies, if not for the man himself. Libertarians are part of this group and can be spoilers. Some plainly like far less (or no) regulation and no foreign interventionism, but not necessarily Trump’s active use of governmental powers or patriotic rhetoric. This group is way overrepresented (thanks to large Koch dollars) and they populate Fox News for some peculiar reason.
The Right, on the other hand, is a different and far more complicated story.
There are four buckets of Republicans vis a vis Trump. The Loyalists, the Disloyalists, the Trump Opportunists, and the NeverTrumpers.
Let’s consider the NeverTrumpers first, since they are the least significant and most awkward. On a good day they number in the high teens and consist of the small National Review crowd, the fringes, like smarmy Jonah Goldberg, George Will (is he even still alive?), the Lincoln Project grifters, Telltale Bill Kristol (and other neocons who are out of sync), Liz Cheney (who just wants another war to fight, preferably in the Middle East), Neil Cavuto, a boss at Fox, and fewer than a handful of lefty evangelicals, like whatsisname.
Together these folks have a bark far more fearsome than their bite. They carry zero political weight, except that the mainstream media likes to feature them regularly so as to look less partisan. In fact, they indirectly help Trump because he can simply say I want none of what they want or what they did under the two Bushes.
Trump Opportunists are an odd bunch but easily explained, as they are in it mostly for themselves. These hangers-on use Trump’s coattails to try to launch their own campaigns and stalled careers. Nikki Haley was hardly a Trump fan and took the job as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations to pump up her résumé. She always planned to run herself in 2024. Reince Priebus was a horrible chief of staff, in it for himself and his establishment friends, for whom he succeeded in securing plum jobs.
Chris Christie is far worse. The moribund picture of obesity tried to look like a tough guy only to lose in his end run. Trump stopped him from running his transition team because he was using it to feather his own bed. You now hear rumors that he plans to run with the devious Cheney, soon to be a “former” herself, to stop Trump next time. He has about 12 followers all stuck on a bridge in New Jersey, no significant donors, and the TV stations can’t find a chair that fits his immense ass. The grossly less than qualified Jared Kushner also fits into this category but gets a family pass.
The Trump Disloyalists are a real body although more or less unconnected to each other. Each of them sold Trump down the river and he doesn’t forget. Former Attorney General Jeff Sessions was the first in his dishonest recusal, which led to the fruitless Russian collusion witch hunt. Defense Secretary Mark Esper didn’t follow orders and was fired. John Bolton thought he should carry the nuclear football and was ousted. Others included slimeball lawyer Michael Cohen, two-faced James Mattis, and turncoat, foul-mouthed Anthony Scaramucci, who, remember, lasted all of 11 days in the White House.
But by far the greatest of the faithless is Mike Pence. Pence was saved by Trump as he was set to lose the Indiana governorship. He was a poster boy for social conservatives. Not only did he not come through on that all important day in January when he could have called the rigged election into disrepute but he now apparently plans to mount a campaign against Trump in 2024.
Pence may have the Paul Ryan vote all sewn up, but no Republicans, or Hoosiers for that matter, actually back him. His name is the kiss of death. As a matter of fact, both he and his vice-presidential staff were behind many of Trump’s pitfalls from the first impeachment to dozens of bad personnel decisions. He has had a total falling out with Trump.
The Trump Loyalists are many, both in the party rank-and-file and among his stalwarts. Trump’s favorable rating is through the roof and increasing when compared to the incompetent, narcoleptic alternative. Most noticeable among the loyalists are Mike Pompeo, Peter Navarro, Mark Meadows, Stephen Miller, Kayleigh McEnany, Ben Carson, Larry Kudlow, Michael Flynn, and even Steve Bannon, who helped Trump over the line and always maintained how essential Donald the man is to the overarching cause of nationalism and economic populism. Bannon continued to admire Trump even after he was discarded. Trump has many millions of patriotic admirers who will stand by him.
Steve Scalise should be Trump’s House speaker because the other option, slick Kevin McCarthy (D-Calif.), is a replay of John Boehner and the RINO do-nothings, like his bunkmate Frank Luntz. The Senate is worse still with prima donnas, swamp creatures like sleazy Mitch McConnell, and the stealthy Pierre Delecto a.k.a. Mitt Romney, all in tow. Trump badly needs a new trustworthy leader of his Senate forces. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Tim Scott (R-S.C.), or Rand Paul (R-Ky.) would be ideal.
But the major lesson Trump learned from his first foray in office was that you need to form a government, have executable policies on day one, and, most critically, have a vetted list of people you trust and who are 100 percent on your team and ready to move and seize the day.
Trump Loyalists should do well. Scott Atlas will return to a high-level cabinet position. Richard Grenell could be secretary of state. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, a younger version of Trump and experienced state executive, is the prime choice to be the next vice president.
Trumpism has its types, as anyone can see. Since Trump’s renewal is already underway and his announcement of political ambition is a less-than-guarded secret, it makes sense to think about who is against him and who is on his team now, and to get ready for the coming revenge.
The reversion to real borders, including a wall, realism in foreign policy, putting America first, killing inflation, energy independence, parental rights, school choice, law and order, economic growth, and plain freedom will be a refreshing and needed relief, even if we may have to wait a few more years.