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Transforming Trump.

June 21, 2016

Monday saw two pretty big news stories.

Collectively, it seems that America is pretty tired of being pissed on and being told it’s just a spring shower.

Thousands of tweets and many blogs (including this one) and water cooler pundits called for a dead stop to the ISIS-favoring politically correct media manipulation.

In what for Washington was a blazingly fast about-face, the DOJ did a pivot to the truth, or at least as much of it as they were forced to tell, replacing the redacted transcript fragments of the Orlando killer’s phone conversations with the unredacted version.

The second bit of headline news was the departure of Cory Lewandowski as Donald Trump’s campaign manager, which supposedly signals a new era in the Trump campaign.

The two things are not unrelated.

Both events reflect a growing intolerance for the politically contrived truth.

It remains to be seen how much of the crudeness of the Trump campaign was attributable to his former campaign boss.

There’s no doubt that Lewandowski had his finger on the pulse of the right-leaning primary voter population.

What he didn’t seem to understand is that there’s a difference between preaching to the choir and gaining converts from the ranks of skeptics and agnostics.

All along, there have been fleeting moments in the Trump campaign where he offered tantalizing  glimpses of an analytical  person who could behave in a reasoned and constructive manner.

People who professed to know him pre-campaign consistently said that the Donald they saw in the primaries was only vaguely familiar as the Donald they knew in private.

Not that anyone should think he can suddenly become a professional orator, but it’s far beyond the time to prove that even a junkyard dog can behave in settings that require an indoor voice.

The trick for Paul Manafort is to change Trump’s public persona without losing the essence of the man beyond the candidate.

Candidate Trump has shown an ability to listen to and sometimes even accept counsel from others when he is assured in his own mind that it is the right course of action.

That’s not a bad trait to have in a president.

Make no mistake.  Between now and Cleveland, Mr. Trump is going to have to run a near-perfect campaign in terms of tone and focus.

If he can, it’s plausible to assume that he was simply poorly advised by his former campaign manager.

If not, the country will get four more years of Barack Obama, and we will need to stock up on toilet paper and umbrellas.

From → op-ed

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