The U.S Republican presidential primary is nearing its final stage. A little over a third of the state delegates are yet to be contested. Things have heated up. The rhetoric is more pronounced. The attack ads are more frequent and sharper; many of those are ad hominen.
The remaining three candidates strive to reach the winning post: 1237 delegate count. Even if one reaches a plurality of votes but not the majority, that event alone would likely invoke a 'brokered convention' come July. Barring a first ballot result that placed one candidate over the top, the GOP hierarchy has signaled that they would work hard behind the scene to produce a winner; even if that meant choosing a phantom candidate who would parachute to center stage.
No doubt about it. The old guard Republican establishment is still less than enamored with perennial front runner and leader by far in the popular vote, Donald Trump. These days one will find the candidates making the rounds in Wisconsin (blue collar and traditional Republican state). Each pleads their individual case before the people. The venues are of renown: Town hall meetings. This past Thursday, Donald Trump, appeared before a studio audience. The setting was Green Bay. The University of Wisconsin hosted the live event on campus. MSNBC's Chris Matthews hosted. Suffice to say that Matthews is a flaming liberal.
He is proud of it too (reputedly peed his pants the first time he heard Obama speak). After the intro, where the smarmy Matthews peppered Trump to the point of haranguing he with a barrage of insults, (nothing but negatives born of cynicism) The Donald fielded questions from the audience. A young female about college age, posed the question: Regarding abortion, as President, would Trump respect a woman's right to choose. Trump was quick. His reply, though respectful was succinct. "I am pro life."
Before the audience could hear any follow on discussion, Matthews injected himself. As is his habit, Matthews went on attack. He posed a duplicitous question. "Would you punish the woman if she had an abortion?" The Donald took the high road. He framed his rebuttal by providing much needed context first; in politics, as in most controversial subjects, context means everything. Its value reigns supreme. Without providing it leaves the door wide open to all types of conjecture, non sequitur even disingenuous and straw man arguments; this holds especially true when a rabid and spiteful hater posing as a 'truthful' journalist asks questions. Trump demurred. "Abortion is a complex topic. As you know, there are many aspects to this. What you mentioned is just one of those." Trump's honest discourse fell on deaf ears.
His sage words fell short of assuaging a hardened heart. Seeing red, the smirking chimp liberal interjected again. He produced an isolated Trump quote from the past. The text though had obviously been redacted. "You are on record calling for the woman and/or doctor to be charged with a crime after an abortion." Undeterred by Matthews's tawdry manner, Trump continued to articulate his position on abortion. The nexus was his respect for the unborn fetus' right to life. The liberal pushed harder. He kept repeating Trump's former position; he did so the point of ad nauseam. Trump tried a different tack. He challenged Matthews on his religion. "You are a Catholic. Don't you defer to The Vatican's pontificates on abortion?" Donald Trump on abortion: A profile in courage Matthews chose intransigence; his deportment became more bellicose. His cheeky reply reeked of hypocrisy. "I am not a very good Catholic. Besides, I hold my allegiance to the law, which is supreme." Rather than belabor the point, Trump relented. Maybe he did so that the discussion could progress to more substantive issues. "Yes, I believe the woman deserves to be punished; but I would not venture a guess as to which degree." There was no point in prolonging this further. You cannot win an argument with the devil.
Make no mistake: Matthews is one tricky demon. He is the establishment's tool. It matters little which side of the Party aisle you reside on. However, MSNBC is an avowed Republican hater. Despite his clumsy attempt to feign his Democrat bias, Matthews's unabashed liberalism crept to the fore. His partisan ardor had a singular purpose: Be at his journalistic worst. Pull out every stop. Continue to bash Trump. Portray him as a misogynist. Show the viewers that Donald Trump was unelectable amongst females. Days later, Donald Trump revised his position on abortion. He admitted that he misspoke.
Given the context of this late juncture in the primaries, cannot say that I fault him. Although, there is a caveat: His choice to defend the sanctity of life in front of millions of viewers worldwide should be lauded; not vilified. If anything, Matthews and those of his ilk should be shamed for slandering a good man. Donald Trump honors and respects women. As the next U.S. President, this tenet will become self evident. The people know the real truth. It is on theirs and Trump's side.
French President Emmanuel Macron does not exclude sending NATO troops to Ukraine for security in Europe and for Russia's defeat in the conflict. There is currently no consensus on the need to send NATO troops to the country