Roger L. Simon

Did the Republican Fat Lady Already Sing in South Carolina?

Did the Republican Fat Lady Already Sing in South Carolina?
(AP Photo/Mic Smith, File)

They say it’s not over until the fat lady sings. Well,  the Republican fat lady was definitely vocalizing in South Carolina this Saturday and I think I can hear her warming up  Götterdämmerung right now – or is it “Hail to the Chief”?

Truth is, there’s only the slightest hope Donald Trump didn’t essentially wrap up the nomination in this primary. (What is the media going to do with its time?) Marco Rubio bounced back a bit from his New Hampshire washout last week, eking out the narrowest of victories over Ted Cruz for second and finally causing the departure of Jeb Bush from the race. (Bush looked more presidential dropping out than he ever did during the campaign.) This supposedly opened up a lane for the well-funded Rubio as the only one who might possibly compete with Trump, but he’s up against a force of nature. It doesn’t look good. I’m still going with the fat lady.

Here’s the bad news for Cruz supporters. Even though the Texas senator ran around South Carolina like a Holy Roller, accompanied by half the pastors from Raleigh to Key West, as if headlining his own mobile spiritual cavalcade for constitutionalists, he couldn’t even win the evangelical vote against Trump in a Southern state, let alone much of anything else. As of this writing, he didn’t even muster one county. This does not augur well for the long run. A few more Jeb voters will more likely peel off for Rubio, as will Kasich’s (when he finally drops). It’s hard to tell about Carson’s, a smaller number anyway. Strangely, the doctor vowed to fight on, looking as bad in the process as Bush looked good bowing out. We all love and admire you, Ben.  Don’t ruin it.  Go back to your day job.  Not only are neurosurgeons more respected than politicians, they’re better paid — at least legally.

Meanwhile, back at the donkey ranch, Nevada division, Alabama Georgia Louisiana Beyoncé Clinton, or whatever she wants to call herself this week in whatever accent, proved once again that racism is the mother’s milk of Democratic Party politics.  When all us fails, when it looks as if even an aging Wax Museum copy of Eugene V. Debs can beat you for the nomination, exploit black people.  Tell them anything, pretend you’re the second coming of Harriet Tubman, belt out a few like Bessie Smith, fly them to the polls on your private jet and let them play among the stars, if you have to.  Just make them vote — for you.  Never mind that almost everything you ever did for them has made their lives worse.  Lie, lie and lie some more.  Identity politics über alles!

This time, sadly, it worked again. African-American voters pushed Hillary over the line, just barely.  But here’s the one thing that excites me most about a Trump candidacy.  He just might tear down that wall — while he builds the other one.  Yes, that sounds crazy, but Trump is the kind of guy who can walk into black communities and command their attention.  He’s the one who can say — listen up, you doofuses. You’ve been ripped off for years. These Democrats are worse than the Chinese.  Why don’t you try something new?  And here’s a hat!

Don’t laugh. It could work. Everything’s up for grabs this year.  And if it does, it will change politics as we know it. If Donald Trump can break the stranglehold of the Democratic Party on African-Americans, he will have done something fabulous for this country and for black people.  Is there anything more pernicious than identity politics?  (Well, maybe political correctness, but they’re symbiotic.)