2016-05-03 (1)

Can Donald Trump Act Presidential? He Didn’t with Cruz

Republicans must hope for Donald Trump to act presidential because ridiculous JFK conspiracy theories aren’t helping.

Is there someone close to Donald Trump who can explain to him that this is not how you act presidential? I hope so.

I realize Donald Trump has won a lot of voters over. Indeed, he may be setting records for the Republican Party. But for that reason, his dive into accusations about Ted Cruz ’s father associating with Lee Harvey Oswald seems so gratuitous and inexplicable.

According to Politico,

Donald Trump on Tuesday alleged that Ted Cruz’s father was with John F. Kennedy’s assassin shortly before he murdered the president, parroting a National Enquirer story claiming that Rafael Cruz was pictured with Lee Harvey Oswald handing out pro-Fidel Castro pamphlets in New Orleans in 1963.

A Cruz campaign spokesperson told the Miami Herald, which pointed out numerous flaws in the Enquirer story, that it was “another garbage story in a tabloid full of garbage.”

“His father was with Lee Harvey Oswald prior to Oswald’s being — you know, shot. I mean, the whole thing is ridiculous,” Trump said Tuesday during a phone interview with Fox News. “What is this, right prior to his being shot, and nobody even brings it up. They don’t even talk about that. That was reported, and nobody talks about it.”

“I mean, what was he doing — what was he doing with Lee Harvey Oswald shortly before the death? Before the shooting?” Trump continued. “It’s horrible.”

Why did Donald Trump say such things?

Trying to answer that question leads to no good answer. Either he actually thinks the story is true or he thought it would be advantageous to use the story. The second option would be better for Trump, but what is the advantage? No Cruz supporter would be swayed by such nonsense. It thus would not have helped him in Indiana even if he had needed any help.

Trump has won a great deal of support from voters. I hope he will honor them by not repeating tabloid gossip and conspiracy theory in the rest of his campaign and during his presidency.

I think the Trump victory speech might be a hopeful sign. I hope we will hear more of this in the future.

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Joe Scudder

Joe Scudder is the "nom de plume" (or "nom de guerre") of a fifty-ish-year-old writer and stroke survivor. He lives in St Louis with his wife and still-at-home children. He has been a freelance writer and occasional political activist since the early nineties. He describes his politics as Tolkienesque.

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