Contrary to popular belief, there is one thing worse than hearing the worlds "I'm Donald Trump and I'm running for president" — and that would be, "I, Donald Trump, do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States." With a host of problematic traits and a stubborn unwillingness to get along with anyone, President Trump would make everyone's lives 10 times worse simply by waking up in the morning and heading to work. For the majority of the country, sending the billionaire business mogul to the White House might seem to be the last thing on anyone's agenda.
And yet, here we are: Nearly three months into Trump's disgraceful presidential bid, the loudmouthed candidate has somehow managed to secure a huge swath of the Republican vote, shredding any comedy left in his campaign. Things have gotten serious, fast.
"When Mr Trump first announced that he was running for president, he was dismissed as a joke," The Economist lamented this week. "But for weeks now he has led the polls for the Republican nomination, despite saying things that would have torpedoed any normal campaign [and] Americans are waking up to the possibility that a man whose hobby is naming things after himself might—conceivably—be the nominee of the party of Lincoln and Reagan."
According to a Monmouth University survey released on Thursday, Trump isn't just in the lead, he's standing on top of a smoldering pile of ashes that used to be the GOP. With some 30 percent of prospective voter support, Trump's next rival is former neurosurgeon Ben Carson, who still trails him at just 18 percent. The remainder of the pack, including one-time darlings, such as Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, and even pious Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, all remain buried under what can only be described as "Trump Fever" — and that's a terrible thing for the rest of the country, for several reasons.
His Foreign Policy Platform Is Virtually Non-Existent
Have you read Trump's position on the current fiasco in Yemen or the European refugee crisis? That's because he doesn't have one. Nor does he have any official stance on any other foreign matter. In fact, the only thing on Trump's official "Make America Great Again!" website seems to be a subpage titled "Immigration Reform," which laundry lists every diluted socioeconomic reason that Mexican immigrants shouldn't be in this country.
If the right was concerned with President Obama's shaky foreign policy experience back in 2008, they should be even more concerned with Trump's generally absent international platform as well. Because in an era with more global turmoil than ever, having a president that doesn't know the difference between the Kurds and the Quds force (and yes, that's extremely important) is inexcusable and dangerous.
He's Insulting And He Simply Doesn't Care
Republicans at the moment seem to be relishing the idea of a presidential candidate who's basically a giant, walking #SorryNotSorry hashtag. From tearing apart Hillary Clinton's personal life to flipping the bird to immigrants everywhere, Trump stands for everything that is unapologetic and bullheaded in American politics. Conservatives are eating it up.
But the right side of the political aisle hasn't exactly escaped unscathed either: Launching into angry tirades against Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly (during which he indirectly implies that she's a "bimbo") has become the norm for the self-aggrandizing Trump, and he's certainly never shied away from a spat with his GOP rivals.
Despite what the national polls might currently reflect, the country desperately needs someone who's more tolerant, who's capable of reining in their words before actually speaking them, and understands that you catch more flies with honey than vinegar. President Trump, unfortunately, would be none of those things. If you thought the stark dividing lines between rich and poor, young and old, Republican and Democrat, and black and white were apparent now, electing Trump to the White House would essentially be like throwing fuel on the fire.
He's Not As Devout As He Claims To Be
Listen — there's nothing wrong with being non-religious. There's nothing wrong with being Christian either. There is something wrong when the the President of the United States falsely identifies himself as a Christian when, for the majority of his life, he's acted and spoken like a man who couldn't pick out the Bible in a line-up otherwise full of children's coloring books.
What's worse, he doesn't care that you know. When two Bloomberg hosts asked him for his favorite Bible verse last month, Trump became incensed and claimed it was "personal," even rallying such Tea Party favorites as Sarah Palin to his cause. That same week, the church to which Trump said he belonged also disputed his claims, stating publicly that, although the businessman's family had long had connections with the church, he was not an active member whatsoever. None of that seemed to put a dent in his forward progress. By week's end, Trump had lumped himself in with the religious right and no one was stopping him.
It's unclear whether President Trump would continue this sort of Christian charade, but if he does, there's a good chance that no one — least of all conservative religious folks — will get what they really want.
It's A Republican! (Or Is It?)
Sure, Trump is a Republican... for now. But as Ethics and Public Policy Center Senior Fellow and New York Times op-ed columnist Peter Wehner pointed out in July, he hasn't always been. In fact, according to Wehner, Trump was, for all intents and purposes, a Democrat for the majority of the early 2000s and beyond:
... Mr. Trump, though he claims to be a conservative, is nothing of the sort. He’s barely even a Republican. For most of the last decade, he was a registered Democrat. It wasn’t that long ago that most of his political contributions went to Democrats, including Senators Harry Reid, Chuck Schumer and Hillary Clinton. Before he discovered his Republican roots, Mr. Trump favored a single-payer health care system and proposed a large “net worth tax” on wealthy individuals. He once declared himself “strongly pro-choice” and favored drug legalization. He is a vehement protectionist. Earlier this year he even accused Republicans running for president of “attacking” Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. Why would conservatives find him the least bit appealing?
When the contents don't match the packaging, you can be sure that there's bound to be some misery on both sides of the aisle — and in the hypothetical case of President Trump, who has yet to address that enormous flip-flip, that misery could very well turn into a nightmare scenario where the most untrustworthy man in America suddenly holds all the power.