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Trump VS Clinton: An American Nightmare in the Making

As Donald Trump’s bid for the US presidency is now in a statistical tie with Clinton, his message must be resonating with a key demographic, known as the “Swinging Voters”.

Trump is a study in motion.

Despite a series of near political catastrophes, any single one of which would have buried any number of formidable candidates, he still continues to trail blaze a statistically possible course to the White House.

Despite a series of near political catastrophes, any single one of which would have buried any number of formidable candidates, he still continues to trail blaze a statistically possible course to the White House.

What seemed like a case of imminent self destruction and implosion, has turned more into a tight race of, historically, the two most controversial and least liked candidates, who are just a pollsters margin of error away from the US Presidency.

While Clinton maintains her legacy of being an establishment candidate, she is not far removed from her own catalogue of any number of precipitous events, which could’ve derailed her run to the White house.

Her own frailties notwithstanding, she still manages to tick a number of boxes that make her Presidential and a steady pair of hands, who brings continuity and predictability to a post-election scenario, a reverse of which would send the American political spectrum in unchartered territory, with a Trump presidency.

We have heard and said enough on many afflictions and dysfunctions of brand Trump. The more scorn that has been poured in his direction, from those who just cannot reconcile the fact that he is liked by almost fifty percent of the US population, the more pervasive he remains in the polling surveys. Not unlike a cockroach that would survive a nuclear holocaust.

To understand the Trump phenomenon or his many doctrines, we have to understand two specific demographics that exist in the US’ parallel universes, which have powered his rise into the mainstream US political landscape.

 

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The Disenfranchised Voter

We have to accept that a vast populace in the US feels disenfranchised and exists on the very precipice of society. The establishment plutocracy, on both sides of the aisles, has left over a hundred million citizens baying for change. Sanders was unfortunate enough to have had to face an immensely powerful establishment candidate in Hilary Clinton, whereas Trump cruised through the primaries, leaving in his wake a mediocre band of has-beens, who never really captured the imagination of those who have seen broken promises and a partisan Capitol Hill that brought the government to its knees, more than once, during eight years of the Obama administration.

The establishment plutocracy, on both sides of the aisles, has left over a hundred million citizens baying for change. Sanders was unfortunate enough to have had to face an immensely powerful establishment candidate in Hilary Clinton, whereas Trump cruised through the primaries, leaving in his wake a mediocre band of has-beens, who never really captured the imagination of those who have seen broken promises and a partisan Capitol Hill that brought the government to its knees, more than once, during eight years of the Obama administration.

The establishment plutocracy, on both sides of the aisles, has left over a hundred million citizens baying for change. Sanders was unfortunate enough to have had to face an immensely powerful establishment candidate in Hilary Clinton, whereas Trump cruised through the primaries, leaving in his wake a mediocre band of has-beens, who never really captured the imagination of those who have seen broken promises and a partisan Capitol Hill that brought the government to its knees, more than once, during eight years of the Obama administration.

But, this still begs the question; why Trump? And the answer is really as simple as, why not Trump?

Despite the crassness and braggadocio by which Trump has created his persona of a candidate, who does not give a damn, he may not be as shallow a figure as might be perceived. There is more to the veneer, behind which his demi god like posture is seen as the savior for the disenfranchised and the ones who feel left behind. Political correctness is not top of the list here.

The anti-Trump half of the divide, cannot understand how an unabashedly dividing candidate, whose choice of words and actions can demean and alienate a number of major US voter demographics,can still appeal to roughly fifty percent of the overall vote.

The list of that demographic is long and includes professional women, who were outraged by Trumps many degrading confrontations with Carly Fiorina; the aspirational young women in beauty contests, the Latinos in general and the Mexicans in particular, who were all branded ‘rapists’. And then there are the Muslims, who are all ‘terrorists’ in Trump’s world.

There are many more, but just these three demographics alone would have been enough to deliver the election to Clinton, in a normal race.

But this race is anything but normal.

And then we have the Swinging Voter, a significant number of which shall vote for him on November 8th.

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The Swinging Voters

As Donald Trump’s bid for the US presidency is now in a statistical tie with Clinton, his message must be resonating with a key demographic, known as the “Swinging Voters”.

No, they are not all white males above thirty without a college degree. Nor are they all pro life and from the Bible or the rust belt. At least ten percent or more of them must overlap a cross section of the American demographics, which comprises of well-educated white or black women or men, who would seem to be an aberration in the Trump universe.

This is the America that has been in a closet. They exist on the seam that separates the seismic lines between the partisan divide. They are your normal wine and cheese friends with good jobs and 1.3 children. They have a college education and some are even in inter racial marriages. They are the holy grail of undecided voters that Trump needs to get to 270 Electoral votes. And it seems he’s making big inroads on that front.

What’s the deal with this lot of Americans? Surely they can see a racist, a religious bigot or a misogynist from a mile away. Not forgetting a possible sexual offender and a tax dodger. The list is much longer.

If Trump led a third world dictatorship and threatened to carry through all that he has promised, including nuking enemies, throwing out people of certain ethnicity or religious faith, he would indeed become a pariah and an easy target for an American regime, so enamored in the recent past in ejecting such despots unceremoniously, with some having being led to the gallows or mob lynchings. Is it an irony too much and too close to home?

Under normal circumstance, it would be cringing to feel nostalgic of the past two elections. But these are not normal times. The narratives of the Obama vs. McCain or Obama vs.Romney campaigns, seem a competition for the high school prom queen, in comparison to the sheer degeneration of a political discourse, which resembles more a blood feud that is capitulating into a gang war played out between rival groups in a troubled neighborhood, where death by violence is the norm.

What does this say about, not only this campaign but also about thirty million Americans, who have become the deciding tilt in this political wedge?

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Trump has managed to instill certain fears and insecurities into fragile dispositions. The undecided are a sensitive lot. They swing from side to side and no wonder are in this box. They are not loyal and,like a pendulum, constantly swing between the two. Different things resonate

The undecided are a sensitive lot. They swing from side to side and no wonder are in this box. They are not loyal and,like a pendulum, constantly swing between the two. Different things resonate  to them on different days.

The election shall leave behind a young legacy of a divided nation. A nation more divided along more lines than the civil war of 1861. These lines now divide along gender, race, religion, nationality, social status, wealth, political allegiance and not least the right to bear arms.

All of the above very much constituted the anatomy of the American dream that thrived, because of and not, in spite of this diversity.

The fissures that now appear along these lines that divide, could well turn this into the American nightmare.

The US election is now hours away. No matter who stands up to take the   Oath of Affirmation on January 20th, 2017at the Capitol Hill, overlooking the Washington Monument, on a crisp winter’s Washington DC morning; it’s the aftermath that would leave much to ponder, not only for the American People, the rest of the world fixated on the US election, 2016.

 

 

 

 

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