buchanan | “If I don’t win, this will be the greatest waste of time, money and energy in my lifetime,” says Donald Trump.
Herewith, a dissent. Whatever happens Tuesday, Trump has made history and has forever changed American politics.
Though a novice in politics, he captured the Party of Lincoln with the largest turnout of primary voters ever, and he has inflicted wounds on the nation’s ruling class from which it may not soon recover.
Bush I and II, Mitt Romney, the neocons and the GOP commentariat all denounced Trump as morally and temperamentally unfit. Yet, seven of eight Republicans are voting for Trump, and he drew the largest and most enthusiastic crowds of any GOP nominee.
Not only did he rout the Republican elites, he ash-canned their agenda and repudiated the wars into which they plunged the country.
Trump did not create the forces that propelled his candidacy. But he recognized them, tapped into them, and unleashed a gusher of nationalism and populism that will not soon dissipate.
Whatever happens Tuesday, there is no going back now.
How could the Republican establishment advance anew the trade and immigration policies that their base has so thunderously rejected?
How can the GOP establishment credibly claim to speak for a party that spent the last year cheering a candidate who repudiated the last two Republican presidents and the last two Republican nominees?
Do mainstream Republicans think that should Trump lose a Bush Restoration lies ahead? The dynasty is as dead as the Romanovs.
The media, whose reputation has sunk to Congressional depths, has also suffered a blow to its credibility.
Its hatred of Trump has been almost manic, and WikiLeaks revelations of the collusion between major media and Clintonites have convinced skeptics that the system is rigged and the referees of democracy are in the tank.
But it is the national establishment that has suffered most.
The Trump candidacy exposed what seems an unbridgeable gulf between this political class and the nation in whose name it purports to speak.