First, some background materials to assist decide the reply:
On Jan. 25 on the Republican Nationwide Committee winter assembly in New Mexico, all 168 members unanimously voted to approve a decision pledging their “undivided assist for President Donald J. Trump and his efficient Presidency.”
Because the Washington Put up reported, “The decision praised his braveness, his ‘daring and revolutionary’ abilities as a communicator, and his resolution to comply with by means of on marketing campaign guarantees.”
The Hill mentioned of the RNC’s motion, “Whereas the decision is essentially symbolic, it is usually uncommon, as a result of the RNC has traditionally kept away from expressing assist for a candidate earlier than he formally turns into the occasion’s nominee.”
As proof that the decision was interpreted with raised eyebrows, the headline within the conservative Washington Examiner learn, “RNC strikes to pre-empt inside opposition to Trump.” And the Examiner reported, “Motivated by latest criticism of Trump’s management from Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah, some RNC members pushed for countering it with a stronger decision that particularly backed the president’s renomination and re-election. However such a measure was killed within the RNC’s resolutions committee, inflicting some to accuse the occasion of quietly retaining its choices open for 2020 ought to Trump be pushed from workplace by authorized or political scandal.”
Then the Examiner added some backroom intrigue: “In the meantime, some veteran RNC members had been privately dismayed that any decision was debated and handed, grumbling that it creates the looks that Trump is in bother.”
Armed with these media stories, right here is the quiz query:
Is the RNC decision an indication of Trump’s political power or weak point?
In attempting to reply, I spoke with an RNC member who was current on the assembly and voted for the decision, however who requested to not be named.
The committee member mentioned, “The RNC is completely behind our president, and we simply wished to make that identified to the world. We determined to not do an official endorsement as a result of we didn’t need to go down that street being perceived as in some way endorsing in a major as a result of the RNC doesn’t try this — so if there are any major challengers, no one can complain. However it’s clearly the sentiment of the physique that we assist Donald Trump 100 p.c.”
In response, I wished to know if the actual that means of the decision was to scare off major challengers. The member replied, “We’re simply saying that the 168-member RNC helps the president 100 p.c, interval. That’s it. There isn’t a ulterior motive or hidden messages. Let the world know as a result of it was three years in the past when it was alleged that possibly the RNC wasn’t pulling behind Donald Trump – effectively, we’re.”
Then the member added a warning, “We all know that the Democrats are going to throw all the things towards Trump and we’re prepared for the battle.”
As anticipated, following launch of the decision President Trump tweeted:
Thanks to the Republican Nationwide Committee, (the RNC), who voted UNANIMOUSLY yesterday to assist me within the upcoming 2020 Election. Contemplating that we have now accomplished greater than any Administration within the first two years, this ought to be simple. Extra nice issues now within the works!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 26, 2019
Per week later, Trump’s tweet is historical historical past. Nevertheless, it’s price revisiting his beautiful phrase “this ought to be simple.”
Sure, after all, it ought to be simple as a result of, in line with the decision, Trump offers “a brand new message of hope, alternative, prosperity, and nationwide safety.”
Therefore, Trump’s “simple” re-election ought to mirror the “best” Republican presidential re-election blowout in U.S. historical past — the 1984 contest when Ronald Reagan received a record-setting 525 electoral votes to former Vice President Walter Mondale’s 13.
My cause for referencing that beautiful achievement is due to Trump’s quotes evaluating himself to Reagan in a latest guide, “Trump’s Enemies: How the Deep State Is Undermining the Presidency.” The co-authors are each “Workforce Trumpers”: Corey Lewandowski was Trump’s early 2016 marketing campaign supervisor who, when fired, was succeeded by Paul Manafort; David N. Bossie was employed as deputy marketing campaign supervisor to Steve Bannon in early September 2016. Each Lewandowski and Bossie have since remained inside Trump’s ever-shrinking “circle of affection.”
Within the guide, the president says his achievements are “far better than Ronald Reagan” and “I blow Ronald Reagan away.” Thus, his re-election “ought to be simple.”
Maybe it’s “Morning Once more in America” – the now-iconic first line from Reagan’s well-known 1984 marketing campaign industrial that captured the temper of a hopeful nation. Within the meantime, the American citizens, as evidenced by Trump’s job approval rankings, has but to obtain a sunny “Reaganesque” memo.
Nonetheless, there may be an intriguing job approval parallel between the 2 presidents stemming from their early third years in workplace.
On this precise date in 1983, Reagan’s approval stood at 35 p.c — his low level for the whole yr. However, after a gradual, regular climb, he ended that third yr with a job approval at 54 p.c. Then in late October 1984, days earlier than his landslide, that ranking ticked as much as 58 p.c.
Conversely, in the present day Trump’s approval ranking common is 41 p.c — not his lowest, however round his norm. Due to this fact, if he’s to “blow Reagan away” in a re-election that “ought to be simple,” his approval numbers should additionally rise commensurate with Reagan’s. And that falls beneath the headings “To be decided” and “Watch this house.”
Circling again, what’s my pop-quiz reply?
The RNC decision “100 p.c” supporting Trump is neither an indication of the president’s power or weak point — it’s extra like a political Rorschach take a look at, completely up for interpretation.
However Trump’s assured Twitter response is NOT up for interpretation; his re-election ought to be something however “simple.”