Trump's victory speech should worry Democrats

At the beginning of May when Trump sewed up the Republican nomination, I thought he could go in three different directions: first, he could continue as the dark prince of political incorrectness, skewering Muslims and Mexican-Americans; second, he could become a conventional Republican, dropping his complaints about bad trade deals, runaway shops, foreign interventions, and K Street lobbyists; third, he could take his original message, which I heard in New Hampshire in August 2015, of Ross-Perot style economic nationalism, foreign policy realism, and opposition to illegal immigration, but pare away the incendiary racist, nativist, psycho-sexual and self-promotional provocations.

The first approach was a sure loser. The second was implausible. But the third might create a GOP coalition that would combine the traditional red states with the industrial Midwest. In the last month, he mostly followed alternative number one. There was the Mexican-American judge, the intermingling of his campaign with the fraud charges against Trump University, the forays into Bill and Hillary Clinton’s sex life. Trump probably did enough the last month to doom his chances. But in his “victory speech” on June 7 in Westchester, which the pundits pronounced as “boring,” Trump took the third path. If he can maintain it, and make people forget Trump #1, he could be formidable…

*Finally, instead of attacking Clinton for her relationship with her husband – and some other sordid irrelevance – he honed in on where Clinton is most vulnerable: “The Clintons have turned the politics of personal enrichment into an art form for themselves. They’ve made hundreds of millions of dollars selling access, selling favors, selling government contracts, and I mean hundreds of millions of dollars. Secretary Clinton even did all of the work on a totally illegal private server. Something about how she’s getting away with this folks nobody understands.”

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