Sunday, May 19, 2024

We Need Last Night’s Tone From Trump – Consistently

Here at RVIVR and elsewhere, I’ve been critical of the role that former president Donald Trump played during the 2022 election cycle.

I don’t back down from that. Trump didn’t help. He was not by any means solely to blame for the lackluster results in a midterm election that should have been a blowout for Republicans, but as I and others have described, mistakes were made by The Donald.

And last night’s announcement that he’s jumping into the 2024 presidential race might have been one of them. Even such a close advisor to Trump as Jason Miller suggested he hold off on announcing that run until after the Georgia Senate runoff.

But while the timing could well be seen as questionable, and while Trump isn’t as sure a thing as the nominee today as he was a month ago given the disappointing results last week, the announcement itself was quite well done. A quick representative excerpt…

This version of Trump can recover his party’s base, but he’s got to stick to it.

And the substance of Trump’s announcement is engaging to voters as well. It’s serious, well-thought-out and far ahead of anything the Democrats are offering.

The agenda includes a push to build for the United States a “shield” against intercontinental ballistic missiles, an amendment to the U.S. Constitution imposing term limits on members of Congress as well as a ban on members of Congress trading stocks, and the rehiring of every American military serviceman and servicewoman terminated due to current Democrat President Joe Biden’s vaccine mandate.

“I will keep America out of foolish and unnecessary foreign wars, just as I did for four years before,” Trump said. “We will again have peace through strength. To protect our people from the unthinkable threat of nuclear weapons and hypersonic missiles, the United States must also build a state-of-the-art, next-generation missile defense shield. We need it. A word that I refuse to say: ‘Nuclear.’ We have to have it. We need a defense shield. We have the technology.”

Trump said, too, that he will push to rein in corruption in Congress.

“I will push for a Constitutional amendment to impose term limits on members of Congress, a lifetime ban on lobbying by former members of Congress,” Trump said. … “We want a ban on members of Congress getting rich by trading stocks.”

Regarding rehiring the military members Biden fired, Trump said he also wanted to give them back pay for the wages lost thanks to the Democrats.

“We will rehire every patriot Biden fired,” Trump said, sparking an eruption in applause. “They deserve their jobs back and they deserve back pay.”

Other elements of the agenda include an effort Trump detailed to drain the swamp in Washington and target the “deep state” and also the traditional “America First” Trump views on immigration, trade, and economic policy, as well as the core election integrity views that Trump has pushed for the past two years since 2020’s election. He also called for parental rights in education policy and to protect girls from biological men competing in women’s sports.

“We need an overhaul to clean out the festering rot of corruption,” Trump said. … “We will dismantle the deep state.”

On election reforms, Trump cited his go-to three major policy items: paper ballots, same-day voting, and voter ID.

“And of course we will do whatever it takes to bring back honesty and trust in our elections,” Trump said. “We need voter ID, same-day voting, and we need paper ballots. … And we want all votes counted on election night.”

He’ll need more than that, obviously, but the issues which will move the electorate in 2024 are as yet unknown.

It’s also unknown whether issues will move the electorate at all. As I wrote this morning at The American Spectator, the Republican Party had better learn how to survive and win in the new reality of ballot-harvested elections or else it matters not who its candidate is.

Trump’s focus on voter ID and Election Day voting is great, but you won’t get there without demonstrating to Democrats you’re capable of beating them in the ballot jungle as well, so he’d better build an operation capable of doing that.

But first he’s going to have to make sure he isn’t unnecessarily, self-destructively trashing other Republicans. And at least last night, it appeared that he was on board with showing that discipline.