Commentary by Michael Reagan
Donald Trump actually looked like a statesman in Mexico City recently. It didn’t matter what he and the president of Mexico talked about. For the first time in his long campaign, Trump actually looked presidential. The visual gravitas didn’t last long, though. Six hours later in Arizona the old Trump was back, reading a speech from the teleprompter and throwing slabs of meat to his hardcore fan base. He erased all thoughts that he was headed to a kinder, gentler place on immigration, which, unfortunately, remains the signature issue of his campaign. Trump – and his campaign – still don’t get it. He should be talking about the economy, Obamacare and making the country safe. He doesn’t have to pander to that base anymore. Trump needs to address all those people out there who are not part of his base, people who aren’t Republicans but who dislike Hillary Clinton enough to vote for him because of issues like the economy or trust. Speaking to a black audience this weekend and pointing out how the Democratic Party has failed blacks for 50 years is the right idea. He has to do more of that. He needs to eat away at Clinton’s base. And that means talking about the economy, jobs and lying Hillary’s failings. When I tried to tell the Trump team that in a tweet this week, the response: “Oh, are you on the Hillary Clinton payroll?” I refuse to be a Trump enabler. There are major differences between Trump and my father, the late President Ronald Reagan. One difference is that my father had the sense to listen to me when I gave him good advice.
Copyright 2016 Michael Reagan, a consultant, author of “The New Reagan Revolution,” founder of the email service reagan.com and president of The Reagan Legacy Foundation. E-mail him at email@example.com.