This may be a very unhip thing to admit, but as the election draws to a close, I am not miserable.
I know the cool, knowing, fashionable mood is to be dispirited, beaten down, fatigued and downright repulsed by the spectacle of the last year of the campaign, particularly the last six months since it’s been Donald Trump vs. Hillary Clinton one-on-one.
Sure, there have been repellent moments. Sure, my party’s nominee has made me bury my face in my hands at times, wishing I could make my words come out of his mouth. Sure, the mere presence of Hillary Clinton has made me shudder at the thought of a conservative’s worst nightmare: the return of the Clintons to the White House with an agenda that is Barack Obama’s third term.
Rough ride, to be sure. But amid all the noise of media bias, NeverTrump pathologies, loaded polls and social media venom, there is a fundamental fact about Election Day 2016 that makes it an opportunity for celebration like few other elections in my lifetime. We have a chance to send a message for the ages, a message of disapproval for a sorry status quo from both parties, a ringing rebuke for elites who have ignored the American mood for decades, an arrow through the heart of the political correctness that infects our society and endangers our liberties. And in so doing, we would send both the Clintons and the Obamas back to private life where they are far less able to screw up our lives and our nation.
What’s not to love?
Most of the things that have soured this election season are sideshows apart from what elections should be about: the policies that would arrive with each candidate’s inauguration. Instead we have been buried in compelling but less relevant dramas: Is Hillary the most corrupt creature ever to run? Is Trump the most undisciplined? Would Trump be trolled into a war by a teenager in a Moscow basement? Would Hillary drop dead at the inaugural ball?
Even the home stretch has been filled with an additional tug-of-war over her ethics rather than the certain ruin that awaits if she is sworn in. Her fitness for office is not unimportant, but if she wins, the America we know will be dashed against the rocks by her Supreme Court nominees, not her e-mails. Our security and prosperity will be damaged by her horrible ideas, not her Clinton Foundation connections.
But after all of this wallowing in things less important than policy, we have a chance tomorrow to strike a blow for stronger borders, a constitutionalist Supreme Court, beneficial tax reform and job creation, and a more effective war against global jihad.
Yes, that will come in the form a Donald Trump presidency, which was not exactly the vehicle I had in mind for such a turnaround. But it was precisely the method preferred by the most voters in the Republican party. From the moment that was made clear, it has been the duty of every conservative to get over their Trumpophobe self-absorptions and join the fight to prevent the Hillary presidency which has been our shared nightmare for more than a generation.
Most have made the journey to clarity. Some have not, including the occasional narcissist politician or know-it-all pundit. I do not know how those reputations get repaired if she wins. I will not have room to care; we will have a country to protect from the scourges of a presidency that they will have abetted.
But if she loses, imagine the healing power. I can’t speak for everyone, but I will be so overjoyed at America’s rescue that I will have no time to spew bad blood toward the laggards driven off their moorings by Trump. The unity we did not see before the election should be more accessible afterward, as we finally have something to agree about: We have a Trump presidency to keep an eye on.
I expect it may rankle me at times. But I will leaven my occasional annoyances by thanking God that I am not spending my days watching President Hillary Clinton destroy the fabric of our Constitution, cripple the engines of our economy and jeopardize our people with dangerous inattention to illegal immigration and terrorism.
So, for crying out loud, get your heads up. So Trump isn’t the poised philosopher king we might have dreamed of. That no longer matters. He may ramrod a longer list of conservative goals through to reality than a majority of the noble souls who were his rivals.
Much is made of the sentiment of voting against rather than for someone, as if this is bad. The media have cackled that Republicans have been motivated not by any great affinity for Trump, but by a burning desire to stop Hillary Clinton.
Precisely. And the problem with that is what?
And if, tomorrow night, the American people see fit to show a desire for real hope and real change, focusing on improving our security, our economy and our constitutional rights, putting aside the circus aspects of this crazy year, we will have dodged a bullet that would have otherwise lodged and festered in us for years if not decades.
I am thrilled at that prospect. I am excited about the possibilities for our nation if we choose wisely. And while I know that if Trump wins, 2017 will kick off a rollercoaster ride for my conservative sensibilities, my heart will overflow with the gratitude of a disaster averted, and the promise of the years to follow.