First appeared on Blogcritics.
At this point you either like or loathe the “presumptive” Democratic or Republican candidate. The upcoming journey to the White House will be like a battle royale, and you can liken it to the films Batman vs. Superman or Captain America: Civil War, but the opposite sides in both those movies were probably much more genial than either Mrs. Clinton or Mr. Trump. This is not just a battle but a bloody, no-holds barred conflict where the last man or woman standing may be as damaged as the opponent left lying on the floor.
In recent days we have had the State Department’s inspector general report that has thrown Mrs. Clinton not only under the bus but several tractor trailers as well. An editorial in The Washington Post boldly cites “Clinton’s willful, inexcusable disregard for the rules” and urges the FBI to “finish its own investigation” in order to get everything out in the open for voters. Clearly, if ever Mrs. Clinton was going to feel the heat from what she once dismissed as no big deal, it is now.
Yet one wonders how much this bothers anyone who is already firmly in Mrs. Clinton’s camp. While Bernie Sanders’s supporters are clearly enjoying this and will use it to their advantage wherever possible, those who love Hillary will continue to do so.
Hillary has been through it all – especially standing alongside her husband Bill Clinton. Her supporters recognize the hell that Hillary descended into, the disgrace that she has had to accept, and yet she kept on moving forward and holding her head high. In their minds she has shown grace under pressure – and then some – and, after all she has been through, doesn’t she deserve their support and a shot at the Oval Office?
On the Republican side of this debacle we wait each day to see what Donald Trump will say next. Recently, in response to a blistering attack by Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts), Trump dismissively called her “the Indian” and “Pocahontas” – in reference to an ongoing debate as to whether or not Warren is Native American. In the past he has said disparaging things about other women, most notably Carly Fiorina, Rosie O’Donnell, and Megyn Kelly.
Trump has even gone as far as to say that if his daughter Ivanka were not his daughter that he would have probably dated her. While such a statement coming from anyone else would seem totally bizarre and unusual, coming from Donald Trump it is business as usual.
Those who are preparing to vote for Trump do not care about what he says and does – they are voting for him anyway; in fact, the more outrageous Trump’s comments get, the more enamored with him his supporters seem to become. It is truly one of the most bizarre political situations any of us have seen in our lifetimes – even those old enough to remember saying “I Like Ike.”
On the sidelines Democratic candidate – the still in the race and not going anywhere Bernie Sanders – stands tall in comparison to the other two people left in the ring. As Trump and Clinton keep duking it out and getting most of the attention, Bernie stands his ground and continues making his case to the American people. Unfortunately, we rarely get to see coverage of anything Bernie does because the “presumptives” are stealing all the thunder. What this says about the complicity (or perhaps the duplicity) of the media needs to be left for another article.
In the Twilight Zone category, there is word that Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders could participate in a debate prior to the June 7 primary in California without Mrs. Clinton. This is where Rod Serling should come out smoking a cigarette and saying, “Submit it for your approval” right?
How fitting would it be to have the two candidates dubbed as “The Outsiders” debating one another without Hillary – the insider’s insider? It would be raucous, unscripted, and unprecedented – and a ratings bonanza for FOX News. We will have to stay tuned to see if this ever materializes.
At this point the plot doesn’t just thicken but slows to a crawl. There are so many variables, so many ways this thing can twist and turn as we head into summer and the Republican and Democratic National Conventions. These are clearly divisive times and the candidates are probably the most polarizing ones we have ever seen, so the opportunities for opponents and protestors to shake the summer seem to be many.
In the end though Clinton’s rogue emails and Trump’s big mouth are not aberrations or anomalies – they are par for the course. These two candidates have their fervent supporters, and nothing – absolutely nothing – is going to shake their resolve when they go into the booth to vote in November.
The dark horse – and the presumptive pain in the tuchus for either the Republican or Democratic candidate – is Mr. Bernie Sanders. His supporters are just as fervent as Mrs. Clinton’s and Mr. Trump’s, and they will be the ones (along with Independent voters) to tip the scales in this election. Which way will they go is at this point about as unpredictable as the next crazy thing to come out of Mr. Trump’s mouth, so stay tuned.
Photo credits: cnn, fox news