by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Poor Donald Trump.
It wasn’t supposed to be like this. For years, wherever The Donald went, he met people who told him he should run for president. His retinue of sycophants surely saw little to gain from explaining that “birthers,” celebrity worshippers, and devotees of The Apprentice are not a statistically meaningful sample of the electorate.
Nor did it dawn on him that some people say “you should run for president” the way you tell your long-winded uncle “you should write a book.” History is full of failed men who mistook flattery for insight.
In the past, Trump always pulled back from the brink. Why risk his beloved TV show? Why endure the embarrassment of revealing he’s not as rich as he pretends to be? Better to play a Cincinnatus who won’t relinquish his plow — or in this case, his line of cologne. Flirt but don’t commit was the rule.
But something changed. One too many Twitter followers said, “Do it!” One too many valets whispered, “America needs you” — probably just before asking for a raise. And Trump took the leap — though he hasn’t provided the required financial disclosures yet, which inclines me to think that either he will suddenly find an excuse to retreat or he has a team of accountants trying to figure out how he can simultaneously save face and avoid perjury.