Before going forward, let me say, as I stated previously, that I believe that Donald Trump is a bigot and a liar. God forbid if he even gets close to the red button.
But in a Trump vs. Clinton match, I would very reluctantly pick Hillary only because I think Trump is a time bomb ready to explode, leaving carnage, all over the world.
However, what is bothering me are the logic of the conversations I recently have been engaged in--both in the real world and online.
The issue of those conversations—the alleged “self funding” of his own campaign.
It has been my contention that Trump said that he was not going to take any money from donors and lobbyists. He said this at just about every opportunity during his campaign throughout the primary. He mentioned it in every speech, every rally, every television appearance, every debate. He constantly compared himself to his opposition--called Rubio a puppet, and essentially said his opponents would be corrupting the process because they would be beholden to lobbyists and donors. But, he would not. The implication was and has been that he (and only he) being the “billion-dollar man” could never ever be corrupted because he didn't need anybody. He could not be bought. Nobody could influence him. It would be impossible.
Throughout the campaign, the Trumpers continuously told me so. They slammed the other candidates and lofted Trump on the pedestal of campaign purity—that he was the only man in America that would be his own man, who would say it as he sees it, because, nobody was going to push him around. He was simply too rich and didn’t need anybody or anything.
However, things are now different. The day after he became the presumptive nominee, his campaign announced that they would be opening up its campaign wallets for dollars from some of those same heavy, fat cat donors that he castigated when his opponents were needing a few megabucks, here and there.
When I bring up the hypocrisy, the broken promises and the inconsistencies of such magnitude (in my opinion, a much greater broken promise than George Bush’s “Read my lips, no new taxes”), my friends arguments are almost always the same.
First, they say that Trump said he would take donations during the general campaign but would not do so during the primary. Then, they claim that taking donations during the general is different, because, well, it is the general election—don’t I understand?
One time, I actually heard what I know to be the truth—well, I don’t care what he said about self-funding. We must beat Clinton.
I have scoured the Internet for statement or statements in which Trump addressed unequivocally (or, quite frankly, even remotely) that he would self-fund during the primary, but, absolutely, not during the general elections. When I ask my friends who have use this defense to please, please provide details of proof--a link, something to support their claims, I get, a fat ZERO.
So, I am assuming that this statement or statements just don’t exist. But if someone out there in Internet Universe has any documentation that he made these statements, please email me at once. I will pay for the e-postage (A little levity, hopefully, to break up the tension, I feel, from some of you readers).
What is even more bizarre is the notion being promoted by my same friends that the notion of his not receiving money during the primary season is totally different than his receiving regular election contributions.
My response generally, has been, “Oh, Really? Do explain”
Again, rarely a response, other than, the “he said he would only self-fund during the primary” and again, when I ask for proof, the subject appears to change or the conversation goes dead.
Let’s be honest with ourselves. Although there is surely a difference between a primary election and a general election—one is against your own party members and it precedes the general, there is no reasonable logical difference for self-funding one and not the other. None.
Trump’s rationale was and always has been-- he didn't need the money. He was rich, really really rich. Compared to his opponents, he wasn't going to be corrupted. As a result, he would turn the political system on its head, because he didn't need a penny from anybody. He said Rubio was going to be a puppet of the Las Vegas bankroller Sheldon Adelson. In fact, in August 2015 he told CNN that he would spend a billion dollars on his campaign, if he had to do so.
Trump blasted Jeb Bush for being in the pockets of donors and lobbyists. During at least one debate, he even said the healthcare industry lobbyists controlled his competitors, not him. As a result, his healthcare policy was his not being beholden to the lobbyists. He said the others were being funded by healthcare lobbyists, not him. He made no distinction between primary or Republican campaign season versus the general elections.
Social media post after post, cited his towering over everybody else. His supporters, everywhere said “Trump would save America. He could not be beholden or be bought. He was too rich”.
The clear implication of his statement was—all politicians in American were corrupt if they received campaign money but surely not him. The logic of that statement would be don’t vote for anybody else other than a billionaire (or a millionaire, I guess, if the campaign is for a small parochial office). Everybody else is corrupt or corruptible. So much for Democracy.
All of these arguments now being presented by the Trumpers simply defy basic Logic 101: During the primary season, If Trump and you blasted the other GOP contenders and politicians for being vulnerable to corruption, then, why wouldn’’t Trump be the same now as he runs against Hillary Clinton?
The underpinnings beneath Trump’s attacks were very basic and clear—money corrupts, I don’t need money, I cannot be corrupted.
Therefore, regardless as to whether the election is the primary season or the general election, whether it is summer or fall, whether the moon is yellow or blue, whether day precedes night or night precedes day—if a person can be corrupted during the primary for accepting large contributions from big donors, then, that person can be corrupted during the real shindig, the General Election race. If Rubio is a puppet for getting into Adelson’s bed, then Trump must be too.
If a politician is going to be vulnerable for taking a few million from this lobbyist or that donor during the runoffs season (the primary), how would that politician be any less vulnerable if he or she took the same, during the Super Bowl?
Again, using the same sports analogy, if a player can be bribed during the 16-game season, then, surely, receiving a bribe during the top game doesn’t make it any less corrupt, does it?
No. if anything, one could argue that the real chips are played during the general campaign or the football championship, that is where the real damage could occur.
Let's face it, during the primary season, Donald Trump either knew he would take contributions to help his own general election campaign or he suddenly reversed fields after besting Cruz and announced, “gee, I just realize, I gotta do what I told everybody I would not do”.
The politician who called everybody a liar or stupid is either a liar or simply stupid when it comes to the issue of his sucking money up from campaign donors.
And yes, he knows what the donors want. He has told us so. He was the best of them. He was the system. He said that when he gave, he expected something in return.
So, upon receiving Adelson’s 100 million (and other whopping contributions from mega-rich friends and business associates who populate his rolodex), are we supposed to believe that he will be less obligated than Rubio? Or Bush? Or Cruz?
And, if one says, well, he is rich and he will pay them back, well, ask--are they giving him a loan?
In my opinion, the bottom line—Trump scammed us and particularly his supporters who now look like fools when he told you that he was going to be pristine and independent and you repeated those bogus statements over and over to your other friends on social media and elsewhere.
So, my own friends, who insist that Trump said he would not self-fund his general election campaign, you are hereby being challenged. Prove it. Don’t just mouth it, show us the video, the statement, the press release, whatever you have.
For my friends who still want to say that Trump is not as vulnerable to political pressure as his competition were of which he so savagely attacked day after day during the primary season, then, please tell me, how and why would contributions he receives during the general election be any different than those other republican contenders received or tried to obtain this spring and last year?
Let me suggest what appears to me to be the obvious.
Trump is the hypocrite of hypocrites. You were conned. But, you don’t care. You don’t want Hillary to be President and you will accept Trump, regardless
I understand this.
But, at least, when you tell us that, you are being honest.