Pondering the election result these past weeks has been a messy process, clouded and noisy as it’s been by the fusillades from both sides, but when all the chatterers and scribblers have had their say, Trump’s Triumph will come down to one deciding factor: J.O.B.S.
Were there other factors? Sure. According to Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and their posse of puppets, the Russians and the FBI’s James Comey derailed their candidate. According to them, it wasn’t their tired tactics of identity politics and class warfare. It wasn’t their ill-spent millions flushed away in all the wrong places. It wasn’t their reckless promises of free college education, open borders, and political correctness to the nth degree.
Before the bitter end, Bill Clinton pushed the campaign to hit rustbelt states, and Barack Obama’s remarks a day or two afterward made it clear, “you just have to show up”—I think he said—in places like Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Michigan. Yet, the campaign wisdom of two of the best—like their politics or not—didn’t seem to matter to Podesta’s Potemkins, who knew what was best.
The counterpunching from the “right” side of the battlefield draws blood when they talk about the gazillions spent by Democrats, where they spent it, the number of surrogates plumping for Hillary, Hollywood elitists distracting the LIVs, the State Media cabal in cahoots with them, and of course, Clinton’s behavioral problems. In the latter category, a broad one, there’s her tenuous physical health, her unregulated temper (about which State Media failed to report), Benghazi lies, email deceptions, perjured congressional testimony, and foundation pay-to-play schemes.
In reciting that litany, I’m sure I missed a few misdeeds, but consider this: 65,788,567 voters still preferred Hillary Clinton despite all of the stink surrounding her. They had no problem with Hillary’s dishonesties and deceptions. They were willing to elect her as is. Lucky for Trump, 62,955,343 voters preferred him in all the right places. It’s hard to believe they voted the first time or voted Republican because Hillary lied about Benghazi. Does anyone believe entrenched Democrats turned on her because of the email imbroglio? No. For the people in Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, it was something else.
As has been reported numerous times already, Trump took Michigan (16), Pennsylvania (20), and Wisconsin (10) by an aggregate total of less than 100,000 votes. With the current Electoral College standing at 306 for Trump and 232 for Clinton, no math wizard need report for duty to compute the change in outcome had Hillary Clinton paid the slightest bit of attention to those 46 electoral votes. To cross the T and dot the I, had she paid any attention at all to the working people in those three states, it would be she now choosing her cabinet and considering her first pick for SCOTUS.
Yet, it wasn’t “lucky” for Trump, was it? It was all about The Art of the Deal. Any good deal maker knows that to come out on top, understanding fully an opponent’s strengths and weaknesses is key. More than the circus of news domination mastered throughout the campaign, Donald J. Trump and his team of campaign champs understood well that Hillary Clinton would likely win the popular vote, factoring in the likely margins in states like California and New York. The final count was ridiculously lopsided with Clinton winning California (8,753,788-4,483,810) by an astounding 4,269,978 irredeemable progressive votes, and winning New York by a somewhat less ludicrous 1,701,118 votes (4,491,191-2,790,073). If Nancy Pelosi had her way, California alone would decide things for all the rest of us. Right?
So, Trump wisely decided not to waste good money on ads targeting Oakland or LA, and neither did he hold giant rallies in Rochester. He spent time on Hillary’s blindside because what he divined was simple. Remembering Bill Clinton’s daily mantra in 1992—“It’s the economy, stupid”—he knew what would really matter on Election Day. Hillary’s flaws unifed his base and drew a few Indies, but Trump knew he needed more.
The American people were hurting, both economically and socially. People who once worked with dignity weren’t working at all, or were working two and three jobs to keep it all together. Few believed in the American Dream, and for the first time, poll after poll revealed most people did not believe their children would have it better than they did. Trump saw the opportunity and exploited it.
Throughout, Trump was excoriated for speaking insensitively too often, much as many of us might vent over a beer or two at the backyard barbecue. Yet, that was what so many—who shower after work, not before, as someone noticed—longed to hear: plain, honest talk. Trump voiced their gripes about disappearing jobs, borders that don’t matter, wage and job competition from illegals, government dictation in their workplaces, churches, schools, their doctors’ offices, and yes, their restrooms. The big secret is that a whole lot of so-called white collar, well-educated Americans silently sided with them and became part of the Trump Triumph.
To Democrats, I say: You forgot that the party of FDR-Truman-Kennedy-Johnson was about middle class working people, not the coastal elites. “It was jobs, stupid!” To patented Conservatives, I say: Welcome to your new party, the one of Jackson-Teddy Roosevelt-Trump.
Trump voters want change, an end to the daily nonsense and ineptitude coming from Washington, and an end to the snotty, we-know-what’s-best-for-everyone policies progressives have been laying on us for too many years. The same polling models that now give Trump an approval rating of 47% gave a resounding election victory to Hillary Clinton.
The new truth is this: a strong majority of Americans is glad the election is over, and glad Donald J. Trump is taking charge.