1. Me too. But I wanted to make sure and mention this early, because of what happened with the last person I thought was unusually charismatic but whose ideas were just too crazy for me. (DJT)

      1. Yep. I find it interesting that most people who object to Trump are unwilling to recognize or acknowledge his charisma and intelligence. Yes, he may be disgusting on a lot of levels, but he knows how to play to his crowd.

        1. I’ll never forget watching the first Republican debate in 2015… up till then, I’d dismissed the whole Trump phenomenon because I’d just been reading about him. When I saw him live, I thought “Oh, my God, this guy has a chance!”
          For the rest of the election, my instincts kept telling me, “He is great at playing a crowd and riling them up and building a following.” But I kept ignoring that voice– “No way, all the experts say he’s got no chance; he’s a jerk, his policies are largely crazy and contradictory.”

          I’ll be damned if I’m going to ever make THAT mistake again.

          1. My issue with 2016 — yes, I thought he had a chance to win due to a combination of what he was doing and who the Dems nominated. Given the negatives of Hillary Clinton, whether fair or not, the Dems nominated the one candidate who wasn’t capable of beating him. If I, a lifelong Democrat, was unwilling to vote for her, think about the millions of others who weren’t. And just for the record, I did not vote for him either — I wrote a name in. 😉

            If the Dems had nominated a candidate that the mushy middle could accept, things would have turned out completely different. Hillary was and never will be that person.

            1. A friend of mine (who can’t stand Clinton but voted for her reluctantly in ’16) has often said to that he feels if Joe Biden had run in 2016, he would have easily won the Rust Belt states that proved decisive. The more I think about it, the more I think he’s right.

              Now, some people will say that just goes to show how entrenched sexism is, and how unfairly female candidates are treated. And that might be true. But nevertheless… I keep coming back to the point that even so, wouldn’t those people still have preferred a President Biden?

              Ah, well… history is full of so many interesting “what ifs”.

                1. I know. (I hope I didn’t imply that it did–not my intention.) Personally, I have no particularly strong feelings about her either for or against, but I do agree that she matched up extremely poorly with Trump. The Democrats have a long history of nominating of incredibly uninspiring policy wonk candidates–Dukakis, Gore, Kerry, probably others I’ve forgotten about because they were so boring–who then lose to more charismatic Republicans. To me, Hillary Clinton was just the latest example of this.

                  1. You didn’t. No worries. But we live in a world these days where if you say anything negative about a female candidate you are automatically labeled as a sexist. Meanwhile, the funny thing is that the people who make that accusation are engaged in all sorts of sexist behavior but it’s okay because their targets are men. Hmmm … I feel a blog post coming on.

              1. By the way, I commented on a left wing blog that I felt Warren was too unlikable to win a general election. I was attacked for that comment by somebody who failed to read the part where I also said Sanders was unlikable also.

  1. Well, the charisma thing certainly explains Trump. Emotion always wins out over (boring) reason. And Trump certainly knows how to work a crowd, which explains why he’s so fond of rallies. Unfortunately, he lacks any of the other attributes of a competent president. I wonder if he’ll be able to pull it off again in 2020. Is a first-term president automatically his party’s candidate next time around? My impression is he’s been such a dud since taking office, the Republicans would want to find someone else, but then, I didn’t think Trump had a ghost of a chance actually to get elected in 2016…

    1. Theoretically, he could be challenged for the Republican nomination, but in practice, every time a sitting president is challenged, his party loses. So, I think the Republicans feel like they have to “dance with the one that brought them”.

      On paper, it’s hard to see him winning in 2020, but like you said, it’s dangerous to underestimate him.

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