Well, Mr. Trump has pulled off the seeming impossible. Incited a populist revolt that hasn't happened in a long time. He ain't my favorite guy but hopefully he'll take advantage of the opportunity the people have afforded him and Make America Great Again. In all honesty, if he can get Obamacare fixed I'll consider it a success. Well, and re-jigger some of our trade deals. I'm a small business guy so those are my priorities. Despite the Republicans holding the Senate and House, he's going to have some head winds after the first year and something unforeseen will occur and he'll have to deal with that. It happens to every President. It's ok. I hope Mr. Trump is the most successful President in history. That's what Americans do.
From a purely political perspective, well, that's interesting. I worked the polls for about 6 hours yesterday and had the chance to chat with a bunch of folks. I was fretting that, at the end of the day, the Republicans might have nominated the one person that might lose to Hillary. One of my Democrat friends suggested that they feared the same thing: that Hillary might be the only candidate who could lose to Trump. Fascinating stuff. I still think that the national Republican party needs to think about what happened and what might be done to fine tune the process, our platform and consolidate our gains. The Democrats, well, they pretty much have to start from scratch and I'd be lying if I said I'm not glad to close the books on the Clintons. I expect Paul Ryan is going to have a tough couple of weeks but that the Senate leadership will remain unchanged.
On the local level, congratulations to those who won and for those who weren't successful, stay involved. Local government makes more difference in peoples lives – even though they don't know it – than any other level. The makeup of the Council has profoundly changed – it's a split between republicans and democrats. They must find middle ground and move our city forward.
First things first: it's early yet. Nobody is going to drop out today. This wasn't about winners or losers so much but a beginning of the process of "separation." That process started last night…..right out of the gate. The Donald told everyone right out off the top that he'll run as an "I" if he has to – he more or less punched everyone in the face to open the affair. The papers will probably describe the debate as "Rollicking". I guess that's about right. So, I thought the Governors executive experience helped some of them stand out from everyone else. Here are some random this and that. Haven't thought a lot about it so it's off the cuff:
Jeb: Did ok. Had some solid answers and a good performance. Needed to push his glasses up on his face. Lighting was awkward. Handled himself well but didn't elbow his way to the front. See my previous blog post – long term slow burn.
Kasich: Very much proved that he belongs in the discussion last night. Handled some tough social issue questions pretty well. He should move up in the polls.
Christie: Did well. Moderated the blow-hard image (or maybe just being near Trump made it seem that way) and gave some good answers. Solid answer to Rand. The bridge thing is still going to drag him down.
Rubio: Strong showing. Paycheck to paycheck line played well. Argument about abortion exceptions was a pretty ham-handed attempt to buffer his immigration stance with conservatives.
Trump: It's Friday and not much changed from Thursday. He'll go down in the polls a bit as others distinguish themselves. Thought the "I'll run as whatever" opening was brilliant but probably damages him.
Carson: Whenever he was speaking the energy in the room sagged. I had trouble paying attention. Intelligent answers but didn't distinguish himself.
Walker: Good line about Hillary but otherwise didn't show up. He'll have to bring a big stick to the next debate or fade.
Huck: What happened to the happy conservative? Whoever this guy is doesn't resonate.
Paul: Some good lines – very spirited exchange with Christie that he ended up getting the short end of the stick on…I agree with him on constitutional issues but screeching about this or that amendment in answer to almost everything ain't going to get it done.
Cruz: Probably should stick to the senate. Presidential debates aren't a college debate clubs.
Moderators: Megyn Kelly came into this thing spoiling for a fight with someone and she got it. She and the two plastic guys asking the questions should probably go back and watch any debate that Tim Russert moderated before they try again. The stories the next day shouldn't be about the moderator(s)…..