President Donald Trump’s sacking of Kirstjen Nielsen as Secretary of Homeland Security along with her staff once more proves an ominous point. When he gets frustrated, he plays a nativist card. So devoid of visions, Trump goes back to what he convinces himself as his touchstone issue. It is the only thing he believes in enough to keep bringing it up.
But he has added a twist, in that he desires to flood sanctuary cities with refugees. Of course, he regards this as retribution for a community offering safety to the “tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” Foreign policy, infrastructure — even homeland security takes a back seat to his rancid phobia against immigrants particularly those who come from south of the border.
Of course, Republicans do nothing to cool the president’s ardor. Rick Scott, the new GOP Senator from Florida, concedes that Trump is driving “everybody crazy” on the border issue but then goes on to exaggerate the problems posed by refugees. Having build a great deal of their condition around nativism, Republicans see that sort of objectionable rhetoric useful particularly at election time.
Indeed, Scott shows a tendency shared by others of his party to try to slough off Trump’s appeals to passion as merely a quirk. He attacks a Muslim Congresswoman and it is “kids say the darndest things.” Never has a president had so many handlers, that alternately try to control him, then enable him. Perhaps the GOP should wake up to the reality that they may be being manipulated and effectively used by Trump who in turn has made them his servants.
Given his repeated remarks ,how Republicans can pretend that he does not have bigoted beliefs simply stretches credulity. Indeed, the GOP has engaged in tactics, remarks and claims that do lasting harm to the party. Since he came down the escalator at Trump Tower, the president blazed away at immigrants denouncing them as indolent at best and violent at worst.
Trump accused a judge as being Mexican despite the fact the he lives in Indiana. During the 2018 campaign, Trump conjured up caravans and forced Nielsen to acknowledge that they were real, when in fact they scarcely existed. For Republicans, it is the emperor’s new clothes everytime all the time.
Indeed, Trump’s bigotry has prevented him from reaching out to areas of possible agreement. Does he offer a new health plan — no but he says that it will be great when it comes forth. He implied he wanted to redirect U.S. foreign policy, but this is too hard, must be left to the professionals before he fires them. How about infrastructure, rebuilding America’s railways, harbors and interstates — no we must build a useless wall first. If it does not appeal to the worst instincts of mankind, Trump is not interested in pursuing anything else.
Again, had Trump pushed some of his more intriguing ideas offered in 2016, he may have built a coalition based on both nationalism and progress. Instead, he is left with a shrinking base grounded in mindless partisanship and nostalgia. Despite a booming economy, Trump has not yet closed the deal for re-election.