Donald Trump and Governor Mike Pence are now the official nominees of the Republican Party. Last night, Trump, citing the recent police shootings and terrorism at home and abroad, promised to restore law and order. He decried political correctness and promised again to build a wall across our southern border to stem the tide of illegal immigration from Mexico. He also called for an immediate suspension of immigration from any country which has been “compromised by terrorism.” He promised an America First posture and insisted that he is qualified to fix the rigged system of our government and economy because “nobody knows it better than me.” The implication being that his personal gains obtained from the rigged system are ultimately unfair to all Americans, and he would definitely correct it. He also cited his endorsement from the National Rifle Association to prove he means business to protect Second Amendment rights, and that he would appoint judges like Antonin Scalia to the federal bench.
Although it isn’t uncommon for nominees to refrain from being too specific on proposals, Trump was remarkably silent on how he would fulfill his promises. His daughter Ivanka’s introduction cited his extensive real estate and construction experience, but every builder has specific plans and proposals before ever turning dirt. Research is conducted, property is obtained, draftsmen are hired, plans are made, etc. In other words, a builder knows exactly what he wants and how he’s going to obtain it. Much of what Trump complains about corresponds with longstanding conservative complaints, and his comments on terrorism and immigration resonate with a large segment of the population, including conservatives. But without specific proposals, including how he expects his proposals to pass through Congress, the electorate is left to hope he’ll figure it out along the way.
To be fair, his website is much more specific on various issues. He explains what approach he’ll take to persuade Mexico to pay for the wall, how he’ll reform healthcare, how to reverse China’s trade advantage, etc., but with millions of Americans watching, many of them for the first time, he should have been more specific on his solutions. That was the main complaint from the “first timers” I spoke with after his speech. Several who were skeptical of him were actually impressed with his speech, but they complained that they were still in the dark about how Trump would deliver on his promises. It’s not enough to point to a website or to say that he’s been talking about his solutions on the campaign trail.
Troubling to conservatives was Ivanka’s repetition of the wage gap myth and her pledge to ensure equal pay for women (this, despite the fact that the deceptive gap has been debunked again and again), and her insistence that her father will change the labor laws to correct the alleged discrepancy. She promises that daddy “will focus on making quality childcare affordable and accessible for all.”
Sorry Donald and Ivanka, “affordable childcare” is not the federal government’s business, and it is both ignorant and irresponsible to adopt the policies of the Left to fix a nonexistent problem. Well…it’s irresponsible to adopt any policy of the Left, whether or not a problem exists.
On the other hand, there’s Lyin’ Hillary “I-was-named-after-Sir-Edmund” Clinton, the feared sniper fire dodger. There is no doubt what she’ll do if elected president, and if she gets to nominate judges, we will live under the tyranny of the black-robed autocrats for 30 years. I’m not one for Chicken Littleism, but this is a watershed moment. We’ve seen the Left erode our constitutional republic since the Warren Court. The warping of the Commerce Clause, the invention of substantive due process, and the perversion of the Establishment Clause, etc. have all but eviscerated our Constitution. For a few years, that erosion has been somewhat ameliorated by the Reagan-Bush-Bush appointees, but the slide continues. I’ve made my disdain for Trump no secret, but this is bigger than Trump. If for no other reason, we as conservatives must do what we can to save the courts. If Trump is able to stem illegal immigration, effectively fight terrorism and dump Obamacare, all the better, but the one thing he can do without passing a bill is nominate judges. If the GOP maintains control of the Senate, there’s no doubt they will back his nominees. A judiciary committed to originalism will check unconstitutional laws and protect existing rights. Is that enough to give the nod to Trump? Each person will have to decide, but let’s not lose sight of the fact that the stakes for conservatives are for the long run extremely high.
Of course, Trump’s unfaithfulness to his wives, his manipulation of bankruptcy laws and his admitted windfall from the “rigged” system don’t tend to bolster my confidence in his character. I think there will be millions of Republicans and Democrats squeezing their noses really hard when they pull the lever this time.