Don't Forget Portland, Donald Trump
The reality is, despite his popularity, Donald Trump’s chances of winning Oregon’s electoral votes in a general election are slim to none. It’s questionable whether he can even win the Beaver State's Republican primary. I’m getting the same admonishing emails that everyone’s getting from Oregon’s GOP establishment.
Does that mean Portland gets left off the "Trump Force One" flight plan? It doesn’t seem fair.
Trump has fans out here, troops. They’ve seen the crowds, witnessed the hysteria. They know Trump must concentrate on the early-voting primary states, but the insecurity of feeling left out makes them wonder if the big guy will ever touchdown at PDX.
Decision 2016 will probably have long been made by the time Oregon’s votes are fully counted. There’s a good chance Trump will have already won either Ohio or Florida, or both... or not. In these parts, all that’s usually left for Republicans to do on election night is internalize how many Democrats have won by how much.
In Oregon, we have this thing called the Interstate 5 corridor. Liberals from California and the East Coast have set up shop along the route. There just aren’t enough red-state Oregonians to overcome this concentration of progressive, big-government, entitlement-state voters. And there are plenty of liberals in the wilderness too.
Many of Trump's stated policy objectives represent ideological upside-down crosses to the vast majority of Rose City voters. The call to ban Muslims is beyond a nonstarter. Surely, he knows that many of my fellow citizens fear Sean Hannity more than they do ISIS.
Five years after former Portland Mayor Sam Adams opted out of the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force on the grounds of political correctness, the FBI detained a radicalized Islamist who thought he was going to blow up our civic Christmas tree lighting at Pioneer Courthouse Square. Thank God the FBI paid no attention to the wacky elected officials here.
More recently, Governor Kate Brown, who replaced former Governor Kitzhaber after his resignation, has assured the federal government that Oregon is willing to take any and all of the Syrian refugees sent to Oregon. In the minds of a well-represented open-borders crowd, we’re a sanctuary state.
The biggest complaint about Hillary is that she’s too conservative. But that doesn’t mean that virtually every eligible Democrat won’t turn out to vote for her — if Bernie doesn’t prevail — as well as some ineligible voters, and maybe even some deceased voters.
So why should the Republican frontrunner bother visiting a state that never plays into the big picture?
Because Oregon’s right is in the doldrums. We usually miss out on winning, and/or having any impact on statewide or national elections. Do we also have to miss out on all the fun?
We can’t promise Trump will fill Moda Center the way Bernie Sanders did. It’s possible he’ll get bumped to the old Memorial Coliseum, unless it’s booked with a recreational vehicle sales event. Governor George W. Bush half-filled the Coliseum on Halloween night in 2000, part of the last leg of a whirlwind pre-election tour. He didn’t win Oregon, but he did win the presidency, although few in Portland accept the way he won.
There’s always Pioneer Courthouse Square. Governor Bill Clinton jammed the place in 1992.
Senator Barack Obama attracted such a large crowd to Waterfront Park on a 2008 campaign swing that people were in danger of being pushed into the river.
We can promise fabulous coffee, world-class wine, and terrific weather if you come between July 10 and October 9. We can promise large numbers of demonstrators at whatever venue Trump appears at, and a very respectful showing of supporters and/or the curious. We can guarantee a local press community that will do what is necessary; they will cover Trump, and take that coverage to the bank.
If an Oregon visit is somehow in the cards, Portland conservatives request that Mr. Trump please not cop-out by choosing Medford. Medford is the only major city along the I-5 corridor where red-meat, red-blooded, freedom-loving Americans are still in the majority. Besides, Trump already has them sewn up.
Only IFC's comedy series "Portlandia" has the mojo to pull off a memorable Trump visit. No worries, an absolutely incredible time will be had by all.