We all knew that kid- that kid who would take his ball and go home if he was losing. He would tattle, he would whine, he would make a spectacle of himself when his ego was damaged.
Now, that kid is running for president.
Donald Trump is good at a great many things. The multi-billionaire has a keen sense of economics and how to bolster free markets and help restore the capitalistic competition that made our economy the envy of the world in short order.
His ideas about trade agreement reforms are spot-on and his central message of helping America to “win” once again is a welcomed overture after years of America losing over and over again.
Trump is, however, not particularly graceful about losing, nor is he willing to share with others in his quest to “make America great again.”
Underscoring this fact, Trump once again offered the Republican National Committee (RNC) another thinly-veiled threat to flip-over the chess board if things don’t go his way.
At a town hall in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina, on Monday, Trump hinted at the possibility of a third-party independent run for the presidency by insisting that the RNC needs to “get its act together.”
He said the RNC “better get its act together” and claimed that it “does a terrible job,” insisting that he has been treated unfairly.
He also criticized the audience at the GOP debate on Saturday, a crowd that frequently booed Trump while mindlessly cheering any canned answer establishment-backed candidate Marco Rubio offered.
“The whole room was made of special interests and donors, which is a disgrace from the RNC,” Trump said. “The RNC better get its act together because, you know, I signed a pledge. The pledge isn’t being honored by the RNC.”
In September, Trump relented and signed a pledge to not run as a third-party candidate if he did not receive the GOP nomination. However, Trump gave a sign that he may not feel compelled to honor it, hinting,
“I signed a pledge, but it’s a double-edged pledge. As far as I’m concerned, they’re in default on their pledge.”
There is an inkling of truth all around. The RNC has long stacked the deck against Trump and pushed a decidedly pro-Jeb Bush message for months. Upon realizing that Bush’s candidacy was going nowhere fast, the moderates of the RNC began pushing Rubio, a right-leaning moderate who relinquished his firm conservative credentials after siding with Democrats on the “Gang of Eight” bill which would have provided amnesty for millions of illegals.
To be fair, Trump has reason to complain. Even staunch liberal columnists have complained that the audience was a hand-picked crowd of establishment-approved moderates who were guaranteed to hate nearly everything Donald Trump or Ted Cruz had to say.
When even the leftist crowd is saying Trump got a raw deal, it’s clear that the GOP has yet to learn the message Trump and Cruz’s popularity has proved: the core of the Republican Party is tired of establishment stooges. The time to act is now and that won’t happen with a “President Rubio” or yet another “President Bush.”
Though Trump is correct in that the RNC has not been dealing fairly with him, his messaging is off. The point should not be “the RNC is being unfair to me!” It should, instead, be: “The RNC has, for decades, been ignoring the demands of the base that makes up the GOP!”
With his vague threat to run as an independent, Mr. Trump appears more willing to sabotage the election than he is with stressing that the RNC owes a duty to the conservative base that makes-up the party.