In news that hopefully didn’t surprise many, Donald Trump announced today that he is NOT going to run for President of the United States in the 2012 election. Considering how much his pre-candacy antics pissed me off, you’d think I would be thrilled by this news… But actually, I’m kind of disappointed.
I was looking forward to President Obama beating the stuffing out of Donald Trump, metaphorically speaking, in the election.
Sure, Trump’s announcement is sure to disappoint many who ate his “birther” nonsense up with a spoon, and some voters probably bought into his “I’ll show China they can’t mess with me” bravado bullshit. But come on, did many reasonable people actually think that the brief burst of publicity (and the resulting ratings boost for stations that carried so-called “news” about him) was going to last much longer? ESPECIALLY now that the president effectively silenced Mr. Trump on the one signature issue that Trump brought to the table, that of the president’s birth certificate?
Now, of course, the big question on many media pundits’ minds is whether Mr. Trump ever really intended to run in the first place, or if this was simply a great publicity stunt designed to get him back in the news and pull in some ratings for The Celebrity Apprentice. As a CNN article noted on Monday evening:
So did Trump really intend to run this time — or ever?
For more than 20 years, the billionaire has teased about a possible presidential run with various iterations of the same statement, saying he “might” run for president (in 1988), was “considering” it (in 2000) or was “very seriously” mulling it over (in 2004).
Each time, he’s decided not to run.
I sort of wish that Mr. Trump had decided to run after all. I don’t think there’s any possible way that Trump would’ve bested Obama in the general election, despite the madness Trump spouted in his “I’m not running” statement on Monday… Hell, I don’t even think he’d really survive the Republican primary. But I think he would have highlighted the lunatic fringe on the far right of the Republican party, in much the same way that ultra-liberal candidates bring the hippie socialist eco-Nazis out of the woodwork on the liberal left.
And frankly, sometimes I think the reasonable “moderate center” needs to be reminded of just how whacko the extremes on both sides of the political spectrum can be, in the hopes that it’ll prompt the occasional deep breath and renewed (if only briefly) interest in bipartisan collaboration for the common good.
Sounds pretty naive when I read it in print… But hey, a guy can dream, right?