I don't know how to take Donald Trump. Tonight on The O'Reilly Factor, yet to be aired (8:00 pm est) he calls Obama "our weak president" and complains that he kisses everybody's ass, in those exact words, which are bleeped out. This is a continuation of an interview the first part of which aired last night, in which Trump gave credence to the Birther Movement, which he claims is made up mainly of everyday patriotic Americans who simply have their doubts as to the legitimacy of Obama's presidency. Trump claims Obama could easily clear it up, if he was born in the US, but he goes on to intimate very strongly that he is having his doubts.
So what is this all about? I don't know that much about Trump. I do remember that in an earlier election cycle, maybe 2004, Trump made some noise about running then as well, but if I remember right, then he was talking about running as a Democrat.
My main concern is that in any series of debates he could suck all the oxygen out of the room. If he did win the nomination, the problem then becomes, will he stick to his guns. Sure, he's making some of the right noises now, including some that most candidates are not making, and in fact are shying away from in some cases. But if he actually won the nomination, would he continue as he has been, or would he just be another one of these guys that can't run to the center fast enough.
In this day and age, there is only one legitimate reason to run to the center, and that would be in order to sell to the broader population the same exact principles with which you secure the nomination. Trump could do that. As a businessman, he knows better than most the old business principle I alluded to in the title of this post-"the sizzle sells the steak".
But does he want to sell the steak, or would he prefer to build a coalition of the center, like so many politicians, GOP and Democrat alike? If the Tea-Party takes him to the dance, will he leave them stranded in the corner while he dances with the RINO moderates, or will he dance and leave with the ones who bring him?
That, and not any particular policy issue, is the most important question Donald Trump needs to answer before I could ever be comfortable supporting him.
The fact that he's been making conciliatory gestures towards his old rival Rosie O'Donnell-why now-doesn't ease my concerns.