Wednesday, December 09, 2015

Vote Donald, Get Hillary

I rarely comment on election campaigns in other countries, not least because such comments are frequently counter-productive.

For example, I have no doubt that the Guardian's ridiculous attempt to organise Liberal and Left-wing voters in Britain to phone and lobby voters in swing states in the US in favour of John Kerry had the effect of helping George W Bush.

But as would-be Republican candidate Donald Trump's comments about Muslims included some ridiculous statements about London, it is not unreasonable for people from Britain to respond.

I don't believe in responding to views you violently disagree with by shutting it down through bans (as some people are now demanding Trump should be banned from the UK) or shouting "racist." Trump's views, however bizarre and unhelpful many people (including myself) may find them, represent a constituency in the US and UK, and trying to ban those views will only make the people who hold them all the more disillusioned with mainstream politics.

But such views do need to be challenged.

I've just referred to a previous Republican president of whom many people in this country, not all of them on the left, have fallen for the caricature that he was an ultra-right wing irresponsible idiot.

However badly wrong George W Bush was on some things - and I'm one of those who think he and Tony Blair made a disastrous mistake in invading Iraq and not planning properly for the aftermath of the invasion - it is to his credit that he always tried to damp down tension between religions, not inflame it. His views were much more tolerant and inclusive than he is sometimes given credit for.

And if you want to see the difference between Donald Trump and a real statesman, compare Trump's recent words about Muslims with this clip of what George W Bush visited a mosque to say, less than a week after the 9/11 attacks: he literally stood shoulder to shoulder with American  Muslims and stressed that they were neither responsible for nor in any way supported the abominable attacks which had just been carried out against America.

Donald Trump may get the Republican nomination, though I doubt it. If he does it will be as big a disaster for that party as the election of IDS was for the Conservatives or Jeremy Corbyn was for the Labour party.

He is most unlikely to ever become president. If I were a Democrat supporter in the US I would be tempted to use my vote, not in the Democrat primary but in the Republican one, and vote for Trump. I am certain that Hillary Clinton is praying for Trump to get the republican nomination - because if he does, any mainstream candidate who the Democrats nominate will beat him.

It looks at the moment as though that will be Hillary Clinton. Her main opponent is Bernie Sanders, who is not at all mainstream.

If Trump were to get the Republican nomination and Sanders the Democrat one, that would be the US equivalent of a general election with Nigel Farage and Jeremy Corbyn leading the two main parties. That's the only way either Sanders or Trump has a chance of being elected.

Even if he does not become the republican candidate, it is possible that if the Democrats do hold on to the White House this year, they may have The Donald to thank for it. Which is probably not what most of his supporters want.

Remember guys, Vote Donald, get Hillary!

A humorous take on the issue is at


Jim said...

Im not convinced Hillary will win the Democrat nomination, Bernie Sanders seems very popular with Democrat supporters.

Jim said...

Though i freely admit, American politics is strange, so I cant seem to read it as clearly as at home.

Chris Whiteside said...

Latest polling suggests she's leading Sanders by about two to one among Democrats, so if no more skeletons tumble out of her closet she'll probably get the nomination. Not that this can be taken for granted ...

Jim said...

I tend to take polls these days with a rather large pinch of salt. Living in the UK I can be forgiven for that bit, though in the US they may well be more accurate. (as I say American politics is strange)

Jim said...

But yes I agree with your main point, that banning people out of places is usually not the correct course of action (unless of course they are a detriment to the safety of others)

In the same way i condemned the green party for suggesting that "climate change deniers" should be banned from the HoC.