One of the most effective political ads of the season features women repeating the many derogatory statements Donald Trump has made about the fairer sex.
No editorial comment is needed when a candidate’s own words stand alone to expose his flaws, and thus to condemn him.
Just ask Mitt Romney, whose “47 percent” remark effectively ended his presidential aspirations. Saying that he wasn’t worried about the 47 percent of people who are on some form of welfare was perceived as exposing a lack of compassion for the poor.
Romney’s ruin on that account may not have been fair, but it was enough.
Trump, by contrast, can say nearly anything and escape judgment from a majority of Republican primary voters. Hearing him refer to women as “dog” or “fat pig” — or discuss his wives’ gastrointestinal functions with Howard Stern — have left him sufficiently unscathed.
It is understood that Republicans rarely suffer for criticizing Hillary Clinton. “Hating Hillary” is a chronic obsession on the right, especially among men for whom Trump spoke when he recently told MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough that it was too early in the morning for him to listen to Clinton’s “shouting.”
There’s no denying that a woman’s raised voice is every man’s nightmare — for so many obvious reasons. For similarly obvious reasons, it is never politic for a man to point this out.
Unless it seems, you’re Trump.
He and Scarborough were chatting about Trump’s recent comment that all Clinton had going for her was the female vote and accused her of playing the “woman’s card.” Just being a woman apparently is playing this card in Trump’s world, where he prefers that women play the man’s card. Or, as Trump might say, his “wherever.”
Why not put a bow on that while you’re at it?
Despite the daunting competition, nothing else Trump has said has been further from the truth. That is, until he said it. In no time, Clinton’s campaign was offering a pink, credit card-size “Woman Card” to online donors. Trump also provided Clinton the sort of touche moment atheists pray for:
“Well, if fighting for women’s health care and paid family leave and equal pay is playing the woman card, then deal me in,” she said in an impassioned voice. (Trump-lator: Screeching like a wounded owl.)
Adding confetti and champagne to his gift, Trump went on: “And frankly, if Hillary Clinton were a man, I don’t think she’d get 5 percent of the vote. . . . And the beautiful thing is that women don’t like her, okay?”
Oh, thank you, thank you, thank you, roared the columnist from her bunker. Do we hear a hallelujah? Hallelujah!
Thus heralding the obvious question: What if Trump were a woman? Imagine a Donna Trump running as a Republican who:
Got her start with more than $1 million from her father’s business, parlayed into billions via four bankruptcies and various business failures.
Wouldn’t disclose tax returns and donated to numerous Democrats, including Hillary Clinton.
Ran a university racked by allegations of fraud.
Imported two of her three husbands from overseas, one of them on a “model” visa, and dumped the second husband days before their prenuptial agreement could hurt her wallet.
Put her third husband on her plane, naked and handcuffed on a bear rug for a photo shoot she said was “classy.”
Said her son was so handsome she’d date him if he weren’t her son.
Said women who had abortions should be punished (if abortion were illegal).
Knew nothing about foreign policy or even how to pronounce the names of countries.
Routinely cursed, called people names, demonized her opponents, as well as Mexicans, Muslims and others, and called men dogs, morons and fat slobs.
If Trump were a woman, not only would he not get 5 percent of the vote, but also he would be tarred, feathered, branded and ridden out of town backward on a donkey. Voters male and female would recognize immediately that such a woman was inappropriate, lacking in quality and character, perhaps more than a little crazy — and utterly unqualified to be president of the United States.
The only thing Trump’s got going for him, one is tempted to say, is the men’s vote , which is no way to deflect accusations of a GOP war on women. But as Trump himself would assert, at least he’s keeping it classy.
The Dispatch Editorial Board is made up of publisher Peter Imes, columnist Slim Smith, managing editor Zack Plair and senior newsroom staff.
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