Tuesday, October 25, 2016

The US Presidential Election: Everything is still open - Boaz Bismuth




by Boaz Bismuth

Anyone who is following this election and getting their news from the media is already eulogizing Trump. But anyone who is the U.S., in different states, and speaking to members of the public gets the sense that everything is still wide open

Try to understand this American election. While the talking heads are explaining that we can all pack up and go home and hand Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton the keys to the White House, the latest polls show increased support for Republican candidate Donald Trump nationwide. 

The various American TV channels are telling us that Trump is already preparing his supporters for a loss, and then suddenly, he's back with a plan for his first 100 days in office, if he wins. If anyone thought, or wanted to think, that Trump no longer believes he'll win, this weekend reminded us that it ain't over 'til it's over. Trump isn't giving up. 

If anyone has forgotten, the election will take place on Nov. 8. It's already begun in some states, thanks to early voting, but it's certainly not over. Some people want to wrap up the current election before the voters have even had their say. The media is already explaining that the gap between the candidates is so big that Clinton is thinking about the Democrats re-taking the Senate and possibly doing what even President Barack Obama couldn't do in 2012 -- win the presidency and a majority in the House of Representatives. Clinton is taking advantage of Obama's renewed popularity and letting him, along with First Lady Michelle Obama and Vice President Joe Biden, take the limelight at campaign events. Clinton herself has gone underground. She knows that she is unpopular, very unpopular. Both candidates have reached unprecedented levels of unpopularity in this campaign, and that's why she's depending on her friends to win the election. 

Falling into line
 
In the meantime, the WikiLeaks website continues to present us with new scandals involving Clinton, including a sum of $12 million she was promised by the king of Morocco for giving a lecture. In the end, her husband and daughter went to Morocco. You get the impression that even though everyone is attacking Trump the billionaire, it's Clinton who is the millionaire of the race, despite her attempts to paint herself as fighting for the simple folk. 

Much attention is still being paid to what Trump said in the third debate last week, which created the impression that he will not accept the election results because he believes they will be fixed, and reserves the right to make a legal appeal, which has been done in the past (although he clarified that if the results indicated a clear victory, he would accept them.) But despite the volley of criticism he has taken, we see that almost 70% of Republicans are falling into line with Trump and think that if Clinton wins, it will be the result of tampering and irregularities. Moreover, one poll reveals that only half of Republicans will accept Clinton as president should she win. 

This is precisely the problem with the Republican establishment: on one hand, it wants to distance itself from Trump, claiming that he's the wayward son of the party, but on the other it is playing with fire, because Trump is the most popular figure among party voters. We must not forget that he is a candidate of change, and millions of Americans want change. The media loves to focus on the Trump scandals, but for the typical American, Trump is seen as someone who can improve the country's economy. 

No one remembers such hatred between two presidential candidates. Even at a charity event in New York, they kept sniping at each other, although they did shake hands, which they did not at the last debate. Obviously, every one of Trump's attacks garners immediate media criticism. Whereas the things Clinton says about Trump win accolades. The media sure is balanced in this election. 

All in all, we need to look at Trump, the man and the phenomenon. He managed to create a large following, and he knows it. This is exactly why Trump is repeating what he said in Las Vegas ahead of the debate: this U.S. election could be just like Britain's Brexit vote, but "times five." In other words, the pollsters will drop the ball and many of the young respondents will prefer to stay home rather than exercise their right to vote. 

Anyone who is following this election and getting their news from the media is already eulogizing Trump. But anyone who is the U.S., in different states, and speaking to members of the public gets the sense that everything is still wide open. 


Boaz Bismuth

Source: http://www.israelhayom.com/site/newsletter_opinion.php?id=17477

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