Yes, he was a nut – but he was a nut set off by the violent rhetoric of the left. All that talk of Trump not being the legitimate President; of he and his supporters being Nazis; of those opposing them being the “resistance”, as if they were French patriots under German occupation during World War Two. All that means something – and to some people, it means you have to fight. If you say that Trump and his people are an existential threat to all that is good and true in the world, some people will take you seriously, even if you don’t intend it that way. It doesn’t matter that your goal was just a cynical firing up of the base for next year’s mid term elections…it still works out that you incited violence.
Democrats do this sort of thing because it works. Time and time again they’ve used violent, over-the-top rhetoric to fire up their base…it is a very large reason why Obama was re-elected in 2012. People forget that he’s unique – the first President to be re-elected with fewer votes than he got the first time around. He should have lost – and likely would have lost save for a relentless campaign of hatred designed to keep just enough of his troops in line to make a difference…had Romney been just a bit more of a street fighter, Obama would have lost, in my view.
Democrats can end this in a moment, if they choose – all they have to do is get all their senior people to go out in public and say, “President Trump is the legitimate President of the United States”. Sure, that won’t convince the full-on fanatics, but it’d dial down the heat and the kooks would be isolated. But Democrats won’t do that – because they don’t want their side cooled down and they also don’t believe they’ll pay a price at the ballot box. I’m hoping that in 2018 they are disabused of this notion – and I think they may well be. You see, for all the firing up of the base on the left, I believe that the Trumpsters will troop to the mid term polls in record numbers, determined to record a vote of confidence in their man…and a vote of rejection to those who want to annul the 2016 result. We won’t know if I’m right until election day next year – and even if I am right, it won’t show up in polling, even if the polling is trying to be honest. But I do believe I’m right. I’m thinking that people have had enough of this – and in talking to regular folks who don’t think about politics all the time and don’t engage on social media, I see a line being drawn between the leftist rhetoric and the leftist violence: people are seeing that one causes the other.