I wish I was more excited about the possibility of a woman in the White House. Well, that’s not exactly true; I am excited by that possibility. It’s just that I am not excited about Hillary. To me, there is nothing new here. I don’t hear anything that I think could break the gridlock in Congress, so to me it seems business as usual. Maybe I’m missing something like a spark of genius or a unique woman’s perspective. But I doubt it, and that makes me sad.
A couple of weeks ago, a friend called to ask if I was planning to watch the Republican Presidential Debate. I was horrified at the thought, actually. Nothing would make my blood pressure go up faster than to listen to 10 politicians with whom I vehemently disagree expound self-righteously and rail against my dearly held beliefs on Fox Television. Ugh. What a buzz kill. And what makes it so much worse is that the driver of the Republican “Clown Car” is none other than Donald Trump.
Now I know this isn’t an important point, and it’s not very nice, but I couldn’t help but notice that the camera is not kind to the Donald. For some reason, he ends up looking like somebody in the TV control room is trying to blur out his forehead, sort of like they do when they’re trying not to identify a whistle blower or eye witness during an interview. Anybody else see that? His wispy blonde hair creates this cloud around his face, and I bet anything that’s not the look he’s going for. Go back and watch it if you don’t believe me.
But I digress. The real reason I bring up Donald Trump is because I feel a sort of Sarah Palin deja vu here. Once again, a “plain talking” blowhard is steering the conversation away from the real issues. I’m thinking people probably say the same thing about Bernie Sanders, right? So are there differences between them? Do Trump and Sanders represent the extremes of right and left in this country? I bet there are a lot of people who would see it that way.
My husband Jim always says, “Where you stand determines what you see.” Ain’t that the truth. I see Donald Trump as a joke wrapped in billions of dollars. I see him as a man with very questionable morals. The fact that he could make billions does not qualify him to run this country. I think he is tactless, classless, clueless, and tasteless. I do not want a man like Trump representing me to the rest of the world, and I am appalled anybody else would.
That said, I’ve heard people call Sanders an idiot. Granted, he doesn’t have much finesse, and his ideas about how to close the income gap in this country are pretty radical. He could use a good haircut and somebody should remind him to tuck in his shirt. More important though, is that like Trump (and Palin), Sanders’ plain-talking speech is refreshing to his constituents. He doesn’t mince words, and he appeals to many people who are tired of the partisan shenanigans in Washington. So yes, you could say there are similarities.
But I would argue there is one fundamental difference, party affiliation aside. Unlike Trump, Sanders is not a rich man, he isn’t pandering to the rich, nor is he backed by the rich. Quite the opposite. So if the choices are to back the candidate who champions the common man, that’s who I will choose to support. Can anyone with a straight face say that’s who Trump is championing?
And that brings us back to Hillary. She tells us every chance she gets that she’s backing the little people. I’m pretty sure she thinks she is, too. But I don’t think you can be bankrolled by the elite establishment and expect the American people to believe that. The trouble is, being bankrolled by the by the elite establishment seems to be the only way to get elected. I heard Bernie say that if he were ever in the position to choose a Supreme Court justice, he’d have one litmus test: he would only appoint a justice who promised to repeal Citizen’s United. Like Bernie, I think that court decision severely damaged this country by allowing our electoral process to be bought, plain and simple.
The election season is just getting started. I wish I believed it could actually be different this time around. I think Bernie makes it interesting. I think Trump makes it scary. I’m guessing once again that there are millions who see it the other way around.