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OPINION

Be Wise, Mr. Trump, or Begone

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.
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AP Photo/Michael Conroy

I want to begin this article by unequivocally stating that I believe Donald Trump was an outstanding president, by far the best America has had since Ronald Reagan. Nobody even close. If he were still serving in the Oval Office, the country would be in much better shape than it is right now. That is an absolute to me. If he is the best candidate in 2024, I will support him again.

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But…

Mr. Trump has been acting lately like he thinks he has some sort of divine right to the Republican Party’s 2024 presidential nomination, and some wise soul needs to correct him that no, he does not, not by a long shot. It matters not one whit what he has done in the past; the future is all that counts, and he must do two things to EARN the nomination: one, prove he is superior to every other possible candidate, and two, convince party faithful that he can win the presidential election in 2024. He isn’t the only Republican out there, he isn’t even the only good, qualified one. Demonstrate to us, Mr. Trump, that you are indeed the best and will win, and we will all back you 100 percent. But that confidence must be earned every election cycle; you aren’t born with it, and 2020 isn’t a good enough reason to freely give you the nomination in 2024. A lot of things can change in four years.

Donald Trump, like every other human being, is flawed. He spent most of his life as a businessman, a brilliant one, and only in the last seven years or so has he thrown his hat into the political arena. Not being a lifelong politician means that, at times, he doesn’t really play that game very well, and, frankly, says and does some incredibly stupid things. He always has.

For example, his recent attacks on Ron DeSantis are inexcusable, very annoying, and quite honestly, a little off-putting. A few days before the midterms, Trump decided to make, in effect, a campaign speech for 2024, calling the Florida governor, “Ron DeSanctimonious.” Mr. DeSantis hasn’t even announced a run for president in 2024, yet Mr. Trump is already gouging him. Soon after, Trump went on Fox News and warned that “if he (DeSantis) runs, he could hurt himself very badly…I would tell you things about him that won’t be very flattering…” Then, Thursday night, Trump claimed that he, in effect, saved DeSantis’s first campaign for governor. So, DeSantis owes Trump, thus, be loyal to me and get out of the race, Ron. To take such swipes at the Florida governor is, well, it’s Trump. Classic Trump. Idiotic Trump, not Brilliant Trump. A bit revolting. And totally indefensible.

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Somebody needs to tell Mr. Trump that he is hurting himself right now, not Ron DeSantis.

But, with Donald Trump, you take the bad with the good. That’s just the way it is. He isn’t going to change. If the Republican faithful want to nominate Mr. Trump as their presidential candidate in 2024, they have every right to do so. But these Republican faithful need to remember what they are getting—the positive and the negative. It is imperative to comprehend that, at times—as he always did—Mr. Trump is going to say some things, some very unnecessary things, that will make even his supporters cringe, needlessly enrage the opposition, and—this is crucial—disgust many people who might otherwise be willing to back Trump if he would just show a little intelligent political restraint with his mouth. If Trump DID lose in 2020, this is probably the reason why. Too many people can’t stand the man because of his arrogant narcissism. Be wise, Mr. Trump, PLEASE be wise.

Of course, the left-wing media loved Trump’s “DeSanctimonious” comment; anything that divides Republicans is, to them, a gift from a heaven they don’t believe in. But they don’t like it when he calls them “the enemy of the people.” I fully agree with Trump on the latter; I don’t agree with him about DeSantis, though the Florida governor hasn’t gone through the political lobotomy yet that he will go through if he declares for the presidency in 2024. We’ll find out a lot more about DeSantis then, some good, some bad, I’m sure. Maybe Trump does have some dirt on him. But threatening DeSantis now looks petty and mean, and demonstrates weakness. And, perhaps, a little fear of the Florida governor who is, indeed, very popular among Republicans. Attacking DeSantis now won’t win Mr. Trump the nomination.

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As I said, Trump isn’t going to change. We must accept what he is if we want him as our nominee. He doesn’t have my endorsement—yet. No reason to give it now; I want to examine any other primary candidates to determine if there might be a superior choice. I want to win in 2024; that’s what matters. So, I’m going to try to find the best American candidate, the one whom I believe will do the most for the country, and, critically, has the best chance to win. We must win in 2024. The country will not survive another four years of Joe Biden, not in any form which we would recognize as “traditional America.” That America is already on the brink. We need the best candidate to bring it back from the edge. If that is Donald Trump, then we need to support him with all of our being. And I will.

But if it is somebody else, then, well, thank you, Mr. Trump for all your great service to the country and enjoy your retirement. We’ll give you our deepest heartfelt thanks. But, be wise so that we can win in 2024. Or begone.

Christmas is coming! My 2nd Rob Conners western novel, River Bend, is now available. Honestly, I think it is much better than my first book, Whitewater. Both are available at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Eliva.com. Get a 10% discount on the paperback at info@elivapress.com. And read some different posts on my blog at thailandlewis.blogspot.com.

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