Days ago, Hillary Clinton made headlines calling half of Donald Trump’s backers a “basket of deplorables.” She soon apologized for the statement, but only about the 50% portion of the remark. Mike Pence countered that Donald Trump’s supporters were “hard working Americans.” He further added, ““Let me just say from the bottom of my heart: Hillary, they are not a basket of anything, they are Americans and they deserve your respect.”
Frankly, it was a stupid thing for Hillary to say and Pence eloquently and smartly responded. Of course, the media could not let Pence get one up, so Wolf Blitzer of CNN decided to bring back David Duke. Blitzer tried to get Pence to acknowledge that David Duke was deplorable. Pence declined and a minor firestorm erupted that Pence would not classify Duke and the Klan as “deplorable.” However, that was false. What Mike Pence actually said was that he wasn’t going to engage in name calling. He said that Duke had already been denounced and that their support was not wanted. Of course, we can argue as to Trump’s flippancy on David Duke, but there is zero evidence that Mike Pence has ever supported Klan members or pandered to them.
Anyone who knows Mike Pence and his history knows that Mike does not like negative campaigning. He rejected it very publicly after his unsuccessful first election effort to unseat Phil Sharp (D-IN) writing an article, “Confessions of a Negative Campaigner” and publicly apologized to Sharp. He refused to do so when running for Governor. He has been forced into that role as the VP candidate, but he does not like to lower himself to name calling. It was a cheap shot and it is an example of what gives journalists a bad name and low regard among Republican voters.
For weeks now, the Trump campaign has dogged Hillary Clinton about her health. She falls (literally) ill and all there is a frenzy among Trump supporters of proof of their suspicions. From all indications, she did suffer from pneumonia, resulting from allergies and exhaustion from the campaign schedule. Trump remained surprisingly quiet and staff and surrogates were threatened to be silent. Even so, the campaign is dogged with a lack of transparency and calls for release of health records – all the while, Trump refuses to release his tax returns.
It is a deplorable election with deplorable choices. Hillary Clinton can’t keep track of her stories on emails and won’t divest herself from the Clinton Foundation, even though she says she will do so if she wins. Trump can never keep any story straight. He has continually flip flopped on immigration, abortion, Planned Parenthood and now climate change. He routinely just makes things up and is rarely held accountable – likely because there are so many that the impact of a single lie is not that seemingly significant.
When you look to third parties, Gary Johnson asked “What is Aleppo?” when it had been all over the news for weeks as a result of the humanitarian crisis from the Syrian Civil War. His isolationism was revealed to be cluelessness. Jill Stein is facing criminal charges for playing protestor. One who is to be the Enforcer and Executor of laws lacks any credibility if she ignores the law. Then we have Evan McMullin – the only adult in the room. Unfortunately, however, due to his late entry, he will be a on limited number of state ballots – and, sadly, not on mine although I fully support his candidacy.
It is a long 2 months and we haven’t seen the debates yet. Like Hawaiian Limbo, we will indeed see how low can you go. It’s going to be a grim few weeks.
On the subject of “deplorable” and the context of Hillary Clinton’s remarks, please welcome Matt Adams (no relation to me) as a guest columnist to Vocem Libertatis. He will be detailing the origins of the alt right movement and their relationship to white supremacist, nationalist and the Russian power brokers.