When you combine fever-swamp leftism with his protectionism and border policies, Trump looks less like a new sensation in American politics and more like a famous and talented gene splice of an old-school Teamster and a millennial Salon.com editor. He’s an old-fashioned union Democrat and a new-fangled conspiracy theorist. He’s got a chronic case of Bush Derangement Syndrome. I used to think his public persona was that of a WWE wrestler. Now I think he’s Pajama Boy with ’roid rage, tweeting until his thumbs fall off.
Even before Saturday’s debate, he’d already lost any pretense of being a revolutionary. Aside from his border fence and his temporary ban on Muslim immigration, his primary policy prescription consisted of little more than “Put me in charge, and I’ll make things right.” That’s the oldest piece of political pie-in-the-sky there is, and it doesn’t become revolutionary simply because it’s accompanied by a barrage of personal insults and a shock-and-awe media presence.
But after Saturday’s debate, it’s clear there’s a Democrat in the GOP field. Trump doesn’t threaten the Republican establishment because he’s too conservative or too populist. He threatens the Republican establishment because he belongs in the other party. He’s hid it well until now. But as his family Bible says — in the same Testament as Two Corinthians — “There is nothing hidden that will not be revealed.”