As if the Republican Party clown car of would be 2016 presidential nominees wasn't insane enough, today, Donald Trump - billionaire and ego maniac - announced that he is really running for the GOP presidential nomination. In a rambling 45 minute speech, Trump in indulged in horrific racist statements and demonstrated that he can no longer differentiate between objective reality and the script of one of his egocentric television shows. Serious GOP candidates - if there is such a thing in this candidate field - will no doubt experience all kinds of headaches if Trump ends up in the GOP debates and the GOP establishment is likely thinking that they can kiss the Hispanic vote completely good bye. Politico looks at Trumps batshitery and what it portends to the GOP. Here are highlights:
Donald Trump was God’s gift to the Internet on Tuesday. After years of head fakes about running for the White House, The Donald promised his two-decade game of pretend is over: “I am officially running for president of the United States. And we are going to make our country great again.”The rambling, hour-long stream-of-consciousness speech was online catnip, from the soundtrack (pure schmaltz, featuring piece from the “Phantom of the Opera” and “Cats”) to the entrance, as Trump descended the escalator to the marble basement of the Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue with wife Melania, who was clad in stiletto heels and a strapless white dress.So far he’s not “in in.” Federal Elections Commission records show Trump has yet to file any paperwork making his candidacy official. He has 15 days to do so.If Trump follows through, his candidacy poses awkward dilemmas for a Republican Party trying to shed the clown-car image of fringe candidates that suck up media oxygen, but embarrass a GOP establishment desperate to reclaim the White House for the first time in eight years.In the meantime, the man whose catch phrase is “you’re fired!” proclaimed he would become “the greatest jobs president that God ever created” and soaked up his time in the limelight on Tuesday.He said he would “build a great wall on our southern border and have Mexico pay for that wall” and rebuild the country’s nuclear arsenal that “doesn’t work.”There was no attempt at diversity in the crowd of supporters, or the warm-up acts before he took the stage: the event was all about Trump. The only intro act was Ivanka Trump, who introduced her father with glowing praise.Unlike the kick-off acts of the more serious candidates, where regular Americans are placed in closest proximity to the candidate, and the press is shunted to the back of the room, Trump fans were kept upstairs while the area closest to the hotel developer was reserved for hundreds of reporters and television cameras — even a Russia Today affiliate was on hand to cover the spectacle.
I have no sympathy the GOP establishment. For years now it has allowed candidates to pander to and empower the lunatic elements of the GOP base and, in the interest of short term gain, allowed the Christofascists to hijack much of the party grassroots. They helped create a Frankenstein monster and now it is all coming home to roost.