This Donald Trump Brussels Tweet About Western Tuesday Sorely Missed The Mark
Don't look now, but there were more elections on Tuesday, and they will leave a mark on the race, one way or another. Earlier in the day polls heading in suggested that Republican frontrunner Donald Trump was out ahead in the state of Arizona, while he was lagging badly in the state of Utah. Which is possibly why Trump asked Utah to vote for him amid his usual morning of prolific tweeting on Tuesday, but he missed an opportunity that you really would've thought he'd take — he didn't specifically mention the Utah citizens who were injured in the Brussels attacks, an oddity considering the increased emphasis Trump is placing on terrorism in his campaign.
The attacks, for those who aren't aware, rocked the Belgian city on Tuesday, with explosions at the Brussels airport and in the metro system that left at least 34 people dead, and more than a hundred more people injured. Reportedly among the wounded are three Mormon missionaries from Salt Lake City — according to CBS News, the Mormon church has confirmed their "serious" injuries — as well as another missionary hailing from France. The names of the three Utah residents are Joseph Empey, Richard Norby, and Mason Wells.
None of this is to say that Trump isn't paying his Twitter respects to the victims in Brussels — he has a pinned tweet at the top of his account sending his "heart and prayers" to them, and he has been typically vociferous in his response to the attacks (whether he's helping or hurting, of course, is a different matter). And there's no reason to doubt that he'd express his well-wishes.
But that's kind of why it was an odd omission, for someone who's been one of the more overt glad-handers of the 2016 presidential race — just how many times has he said "I love the [fill in the blank], believe me" so far? In addition to the fact that it's a nice, empathetic, personable, and presidential-looking thing to do to cite the specific members of a community who've been grievously harmed by terrorist violence, it's also right up Trump's political alley, and could only help matters.
But Utah didn't even get its own dedicated Trump tweet on Tuesday, and was relegated to share a "please vote for me" message with Arizona. Actually, that somewhat highlights the big reason Utah may be getting a short stick from the Trump camp overall, and you can't really blame them on this front — he's facing some dismal numbers heading into the voting, and barring a miraculous comeback, he's not going to be competitive there.