Steve Daunt looks at how Hillary Clinton's campaign could be helping Trump win support
Sometime in 2015 I caught a bug. I wasn’t alone. In all, 857,995 people have succumbed to it so far. What am I talking about?
In the spring of 2015, Hillary Clinton announced that she was going to seek the nomination for the Democratic Party for 2016. She didn’t make a speech, she didn’t send a press release. She made a YouTube video. She’s so 21st century.
Even as I watched it, the first pangs of flesh crawling started. It was so anodyne and full of happy-clappy stereotypes of people Hillary knew she could depend on to vote for her. There was talk of ordinary Americans and how she was going to champion them. Hello?
They were all well heeled, educated, straight from central casting Americans while she was from strong stock, educated in the finer things in life with a bank balance to die for. This jarred with me but I thought ‘that’s America for you’.
Then the Donald happened. Of course, he is equally WASPish and his bank balance would actually dwarf Hillary’s.
His ‘real’ American was, and is, gun toting, bible bashing, non-travelling, and educated to a pretty basic standard. They also feel ignored. Again, this wouldn’t have mattered until Brexit. The masses, in all their non-educated real world glory spoke up.
Yes, trump jumped on the bandwagon but there is far more going on. Trump has charisma. So has every common or garden Fascist, I hear you howl. True.
I’ve seen him speak and it was hard to tell whether he used an autoprompter or not. He seemed natural... Unlike his hair! He knew he had an audience and he knew how to use them.
Yes, there are cringey comments. Hillary and Bono would call them hateful and un-American. There lies the issue. For the very large proportion of America who will vote Trump, traditional liberal politics, and the economics that go with it, have left them behind. That is how they feel.
While I was in the states, the most shocking thing I witnessed wasn’t a piece of Trump bombast. It was Hillary.
In an extraordinary outburst she decided that 50% of Trump supporters were ‘deplorable’. Hillary has been a career politician for an age. Where was her judgement?
What Hillary said may be true but it showed an attitude that dismissed fears - real or perceived - of a very large number of Americans. Dismissing them made her look snobbish and out of touch. Her America was as equally exclusive as Trump’s could be. Instead of addressing fears, she dismissed them. They were un-American. Label them and they’ll go away.
This is where Bono comes in. Bono comes from that well known US suburb of Glassnevin/Ballymun where he grew up on a diet of Mum’s apple pie and rock 'n' roll.
His view of America is purely romantic. Any nasty thing like reality should never get in his way. Imagine some dodgy Brit telling us that Enda wasn’t really Irish?
That is the problem I saw observing the Clinton Campaign. It seemed isolated and out of touch, and unwilling to engage in the fears of Trump voters. It looked like the Clinton camp had taken the easier option of slagging Trump.
She seems isolated. She seems elitist. While Trump is playing his role perfectly. Yes, he probably is a megalomaniac with Fascist leanings but guess what? He’s probably going to win.
Hail to the Great Donald. We (or I, at least) bow down to him.