Donald Trump

Donald Trump and the 2016 Presidential Primary

It’s now almost certain that the major party candidates for 2016 are going to be Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. It’s not too hard to understand how Hillary got there, but how can we account for a billionaire businessman and television celebrity who has been back and forth between political parties about to snare the [...]

Donald Trump and the Catholic Vote

Donald Trump will be the Republican nominee for the 2016 presidential election. Having already explained why this is a calamity for Catholics, and for all people of goodwill, I will not repeat those arguments here. Instead, I would make a different point. Those of us who recognize this disaster for what it is need to [...]

Donald Trump Brings Out the Worst in Our Best

Donald Trump is driving everyone a bit batty. His foes and even his friends are all getting weary thinking about him and certainly talking about him. And his presence in this campaign has brought out the worst in us, even among those who are our best and most thoughtful. I do not include myself among [...]

Is Electing Trump Really Unthinkable?

A parish priest that I’ve known for years, though politically savvy, doesn’t follow the Democrat debates. Refreshingly cynical about both parties, he knows that to say the Forces of Darkness are presently arrayed against the Camp of the Saints would be a half-truth; he still insists on distinctions: “That party promotes everything that is evil.” [...]

Electing Trump Should be Unthinkable

I’ve never felt prouder to be a Minnesotan than on March 1, 2016. Minnesota conservatives rarely get the chance to vote and make a difference. Our politics range from blue to a deep, inky navy. It can start to feel oppressive. In 2012, our house was one of just three on the entire block that [...]

Against “#NeverTrump”

If the election were today and the choice was Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump, I would either not vote for president for the first time in my adult life or do a write-in vote. But the election is not today and that is one of the problems with #NeverTrump. As I understand it, #NeverTrump is an attempt to [...]

A Trump Nomination Means Victory for Clinton in November

Politically interested Catholics have been tearing one another apart over the question: would you vote for Donald Trump to stop Hillary Clinton from becoming president? I worry about many things nowadays, but not very much about that. I’m not voting for Trump. He is an awful human being and an awful candidate, and he would [...]

Presidential Politics and the Death of Character

In his 1974 book, The Roots of American Order, which he viewed as his contribution to America’s Bicentennial, the great scholar Russell Kirk said that the virtue and dignity of a great president like Lincoln was “still respected by the American democracy.” In the 2016 presidential campaign so far, it is not so clear that [...]

Trump and the Idolatry of Gigantism

Donald Trump is obsessed with winning big. “We’re going to win so much. And I say it and I mean it. We’re going to win so much,” Trump said in a stump speech that had all the swagger of a drunken stupor. “We’re going to win at every single level. We’re going to win so [...]

The Dangers of Contemporary “Authoritarianism”

Matthew MacWilliams, in a January 17 post on Politico, expatiated on the “one weird trait that predicts whether you are a Trump supporter." That variable turns out to be "authoritarianism.” The author relates the results of a late December 2015 poll he conducted in conjunction with the University of Massachusetts. Controlling for different variables, he contends [...]

Donald Trump, George Will, and the Crisis of Conservatism

If every cloud has a silver lining, we can say that the presidential candidacy of Donald Trump has—whatever his detractors may say—served some useful purposes. Those most critical of Trump speak of his followers as delirious, as if they were in the grip of some dreadful political fever. Nevertheless, a fever can be useful to [...]

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