It’s not easy spinning Donald Trump. Ask Paul Manafort. He was brought into the Trump campaign to take the candidate to the next level. But he has a problem. He knows that in order for Trump to expand his base, he must evolve as a candidate. But how does Donald Trump evolve?
“He gets it. The part that he’s been playing is evolving into the part that now you’ve been expecting, but he wasn’t ready for because he had to first feed the first phase.”
That comment has caused a stir. Is Donald Trump lying? Is he just playing a part? Is this a reality show, or a campaign? More importantly, are the populist faithful being conned? The answer is, of course, yes, but that may not matter to the faithful, as long as he does not evolve into the dreaded Washington insider they hate.
Evolution is a wonderful thing. Turtles do it. So do finches. Politicians? Meh. Not so much. The Donald certainly needs a bit of evolution to recapture all the people he has shunned in the past. Trump uses ‘I love you’ a lot to say, in effect, ‘I didn’t mean you, I meant them’, but the trick doesn’t seem to be fooling anyone. It’s very hard to insult a person and love them in the next breath. And Donald has insulted a lot of people. Everyone we can think of, perhaps with the exception of Capuchin Monks, and he may not know they exist. Let’s not tell him. He has very personally attacked just about anyone who has ever disagreed with him, including most of the leaders of the Republican party. Exactly where does he evolve to from this point?
“Fixing personality negatives is a lot easier than fixing character negatives. You can’t change somebody’s character, but you can change the way a person presents himself.”
So, Donald is a mean, vindictive person who insults anyone that he feels insults him, but Manafort can make him look like he is not that kind of person? We think that is what his base likes about him. Remember ‘he tells it like it is’? Is this evolution? We think not. This seems to be marketing.
In the long run, it may not make any difference. The party is willing to kiss and make up. Reince Priebus has called for unity, which basically translates to ‘He is the nominee. We surrender’.
Manafort may be off the hook. But with so many insults to so many people, can Donald Trump spin his populist nonsense in such a way that all of the people he has maligned with nevertheless walk into a voting booth and vote for him?