Do you ever wonder what it would be like to be Trump? To enter into his brain (please don’t laugh because you think it might be empty) and think like he does? To be behind his eyes and see the world the way he sees it? To be inside his ears and hear the voices around him the way he hears them? To look to the future of impending (might I use the word ‘imminent?’) impeachment and the upcoming election and comprehend them the way he does?
Well, why not try. If I can use a metaphor, think of those wagons that rumbled across the wild west in they early days of our country. Remember? There were two men topside. First was the driver who held the reins and controlled the horses, directed where they went, how fast, etc. And then there was the ‘shotgun,’ literally a shotgun because he held one. He was the rugged guy who looked out for bandits or indigenous Americans who might want the wagon stopped. Trump is both.
The election lies out there in front. Behind, the impeachment trial is snapping at his heels. Already he has the stigma of impeachment. And what if by some strange miracle the Senate stopped shining his shoes and decided to conduct an honest trial? If so, what’s the strategy?
The playing field is clear. To avoid impeachment, he has to hold on to the slim Republican majority in the Senate, and maybe dislodge a Democrat or two in his favor. The Senate Majority Leader his already said he will take his instructions from the president. Like the judge in a legal courtroom taking instruction from the accused. “You want me to rule you not guilty?” Bang comes the gavel, trial over.
Republican senators’ political stability rests on the president. Unite with him, support him, and the president’s base will support you. It’s true with impeachment and reelection. The base, the base that elected Trump, and the base that has essentially said that no matter what he is or what he does, will support him. When Trump said he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue and his followers would stay with him, he told the truth.
The base? The strongest part and the part that will never leave him is white evangelicals. Trump has the prominent leaders and millions of evangelical followers tightly in his camp. But they’re like dogs. They have to be fed. Stand against abortion for any cause. Stand against gay marriage, then gay rights. For badly needed medical research, ban the use of embryonic tissue that will otherwise be discarded. And treat Muslim countries as an evil empire that must be fought to bring about Armageddon and the return of Christ.
The other part of the base is wealthy people. You know, when Hitler rose in power through the 1930s, only one industrialist opposed him—Robert Bosch. Gustav Krupp and the leaders of I. G. Farben enthusiastically endorsed Hitler and even funded the Nazi Party to bail it out of bankruptcy. With their leadership, almost all the rest of German industry followed.
Feed the base means feed the wealthy a growing economy and ever more riches. Tax cuts for the rich? Made to order. All kinds of loopholes so that rich Americans pay no more an income percentage in taxes than the middle class. Feed the pocketbook. Feed the dogs. They’ll never leave.
This is Trump’s world. This how he sees he wins. Plus a little help from a foreign country shoveling dirt on his opponent. It worked before.