OPINION: Trump’s scare tactics

OPINION: Trump’s scare tactics



“All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States ...”

You may recognize those words as coming from Section 1 of the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. But have no fear; notice that it says “No state shall ...” but it doesn’t say “No president shall ...”

So the president of the moment has vowed to cross out that part, by an executive order (he’ll probably do it with the same Sharpie he uses to scribble his huge and pretentious signature on such orders). All designed to get his true believers fired up about Tuesday’s election.

Of course, that would be unconstitutional — not that Mr. Trump gives much evidence of knowing what that document says. Rather, he seems to subscribe to the Nixon Doctrine: “Well, when the president does it, that means that it is not illegal.”

But that won’t matter after Tuesday. The threat to undo the Fourteenth (the “anchor baby” amendment) plus his dramatic decision just days before the election to send 5,200 troops to the border to defend us, will do the trick.

To defend us from the huddled masses, the wretched refuse of teeming Central American shores, riven by hunger and violence, people yearning so badly to breathe free that they’re willing to walk a thousand miles to America, some of them carrying small children, just for a chance that we might give them refuge.

Fat chance.

He also warned us that “criminals and unknown Middle Easterners are mixed in” with that caravan — an assertion he pulled out of thin air, which is the same place he got the idea that the only reason Hillary Clinton outpolled him in the 2016 presidential contest was that 3 million people voted for her illegally.

No evidence has emerged for either of those claims, any more than there has for his boast earlier this year that he had the highest polls of any Republican in history, “including Lincoln” (there was no polling in Lincoln’s day) or that, thanks to him, U.S. Steel was building six new mills (correct number: zero).

Meanwhile, Mr. Trump was so unaffected by last week’s massacre in Pittsburgh that he didn’t miss a beat on his campaign schedule, joking at an appearance in Indiana the same day that he almost had to cancel a rally in Illinois that evening because he was having a bad hair day.

The guy’s a scream.

So he went to that night’s rally and the crowds were chanting the same kind of slogans (“Lock her up!” “CNN sucks!”) they had chanted at an earlier rally in Florida, where we saw the excited face of Cesar Sayoc, who police say sent bombs to the homes or offices of more than a dozen of Mr. Trump’s political foes, including two former presidents (and the young daughters of one), three members of Congress and two former U.S. intelligence chiefs.

And now, with the election in sight, he suddenly says a “major” tax cut is on the way.

I’ll hold my breath.

Reach Glenn Richter at grichter@record-journal.com.


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