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Monday, August 17, 2015

Comparing Donald Trump with Sarah Palin

Every Pesidential election seems to produce a flash in the pan darling of the campaign.  It's hard to forget how cutely charismatic Sarah Palin was, when she stepped into the GOP national spotlight, as Senator John McCain's 2008, vice presidential running mate. Today, the GOP presidential campaign darling glides into the media on a Trumped up helicopter. Donald "Trump the Chump" is invading the GOP as a superstar campaigner.  He's more than just a campaign darling. Rather, he's a "daaaaaaling", with celebrity status and enough money to sustain it.

Sarah Palin had her "Katie Couric" moment in the frying pan and she fizzled. "What newspapers do you read?", was the question that seemed to trip up Palin.  "Read?"....oh well.

On the other hand, at Donald Trump's firing squad trial, he was picked off like a duck in a carnival game, by Fox News diva Megyn Kelly. Unlike Palin's flash in the pan, the Trump "gotcha" moment backfired on Fox News. When Kelly boldly challenged Trump about his description of women, the "Donald" leaped to the occasion with bravado.  

Megyn Kelly (Center) with Bret Baier (right) and Chris Wallace (left)

Megyn Kelly sprinted out of the debate moderators' panel with this:

Megyn Kelly to Donald Trump: 'You've called women you don't like fat pigs, slobs – and disgusting animals'.

Early into the first 2016 Republican debate, presidential hopeful Donald Trump was grilled over his previous record of making sexist comments by moderator Megyn Kelly.

"Only Rosie O'Donnell," he responded.

"No it wasn't," said Kelly. "For the record, it was well beyond Rosie O'Donnell. Your Twitter account has several disparaging comments about women's looks."

"You once told a contestant on 'Celebrity Apprentice' it would be a pretty picture to see her on her knees. Does that sound to you like the temperament of a man we should elect as president?"

In response, Trump the Chump blamed the country's stance on "political correctness" and said he didn't have time for Ms Kelly's question.

"And to be honest, this country doesn't have time either. This country is in big trouble. We don't win anymore. We lose to China. We lose to Mexico, both in trade and at the border," he continued, with a round of applause from the crowd of conservative supporters. "We lose to everybody. And frankly, what I say, and oftentimes it's fun, it's kidding, we have a good time.What I say, is what I say.

Mr Trump seemingly lost his cool, suggesting that he shouldn't "be very nice" to Kelly.

So, what's the difference between Trump the Chump and Sarah Palin, who was the Barbie of the GOP?  Well, for one thing, Trump thinks on his feet, even when stressed. Although his response to Kelly was brutal, he had an answer for Kelly; while Palin was paralyzed by Couric's query about what newspapers she read.

Moreover, Trump has no political handlers, while Palin was overwhelmed with advisers who wanted to control her communications. I've often wondered how much better Palin would've done in McCain's presidential campaign, if she could've been unbridled. (Of course, it's also possible she'd have been even worse with the media, too.)

Nevertheless, Palin was a poor candidate because she just didn't have the stature to withstand the pressure of a presidential campaign. On the other hand, Trump the Chump is energized by the intensity of the presidential campaign. He's not a "made for TV" candidate. Rather, he seems to be a campaign natural.

Although Trump the Chump carries celebrity status with him like a superman wears a magic cape, the fact is, to be elected president he needs votes.  I sincerely hope Trump's rise in the GOP is causing all voter registration drives to gear up to a new intensity because it's the ballot box where his final debate test will be graded.  Trump can't intimidate and be "not nice" to millions of informed voters who know he is not qualified to be the leader of the free world.  

Shame on the Republican party for allowing the Trump the Chump rise in the campaign. The Trump helicopter is like a restored relic of the Viet Nam war, a symbol of GOP failure to provide a leader who can hypnotize the right wing zealots.

It will take informed voters, experts at evaluating the qualifications of a presidential candidate, to do what Republicans are incapable of doing for their own party's future. In other words, the GOP can't find a leader, so Trump soaked up the opportunity for himself.

Thoughtful voters will have to undo what Republican are unable to do for the party

Voters will evaluate Donald Trump, just like they did Sarah Palin. Both of them are fun to watch, charismatic speakers and iconic political figures. Like Palin, Donald Trump will eventually fade like a neon light running out of juice. 

Trump sure knows how to degrade women, whether it's Rosie O'Donnell or Megyn Kelly. But, he won't be able to come out from under the Palin legacy of being unqualified for the job for which he's applying. 

To plagiarize Trump's own cliche, he should be fired.

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