Donald Trump’s catchphrase is “I’m gonna make America great again.” On the surface, he’s got a lot to back it up. He’s a wealthy businessman. He knows how to handle a crowd, get attention, and say the right words to fire up crowds. He’s moderately conservative, with ultra-conservative stances on immigration balanced out with moderate stances on Planned Parenthood, guns, and gay rights, thus well-positioned to keep the right happy while stealing moderate voters from the left.
But his ‘ability’ to “make America great again” is shallow, and doesn’t stand up to scrutiny. His business savvy and crowd appeal is only a mirage. Even supposing he manages to make the Republican nomination, and by a miracle beats the Democratic nominee, his four years in office will sink America’s foreign policy and financial policy.
If you’re a Trump supporter, please, read this essay carefully. Take a couple minutes to understand the candidate that you’re espousing before you cast your ballot. Trump is not going to make America great again. If my studies permit, I will follow this essay up with specific articles directed at major segments of the Republican Party, outlining specifically why Trump isn’t the answer for you.
For now, I have three general reasons why not to support Trump. First, he’s not presidential. Second, he’s a chameleon. Finally, Trump is not capable of being President. We’ll discuss each reason in further detail below.
#1: Trump is not presidential
First, Trump is not presidential. Donald Trump is immature and narcissistic.
To be quite honest, it is sometimes amusing to read articles about Trump’s latest eruption, much as it is amusing to watch a petulant preschooler throw a fit over some insignificant perceived injury. When you think about it though, it’s not amusing at all to imagine the potential consequences of a president with the emotional maturity of a two-year-old.
Trump. What a pleasant and humble person. Can't stop saying kind and generous things about his fellow Republicans. #DebateWithBernie
— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) September 17, 2015
Sure, whining about Mexico and griping about China may earn you points now. Blasting every single person who disagrees with you as ‘stupid’ or a ‘hater and loser‘ may up you in the Republican polls for now. But grousing and name-calling are not going to work in the general election, and they’re not going to work as President.
Sorry losers and haters, but my I.Q. is one of the highest -and you all know it! Please don't feel so stupid or insecure,it's not your fault
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 9, 2013
Imagine Trump flaring up in a meeting with one of our close allies. Say Trump called the Queen of England a ‘bimbo.’ Say Trump called the Prime Minister of Japan an idiot. Say Trump blatantly insulted the Prime Minister of Israel for a perceived slight in the spirit in which he blasted FOX News reporter Megyn Kelly after the first Republican presidential debate. Imagine how that would go over. Imagine how much turning off one of our closest allies would wreck national security.
It gets worse. Imagine Trump publicly insulting one of our enemies. Ploughshares Fund estimates that Russia has even more nuclear weapons stockpiled than we do. Imagine Trump calling Vladimir Putin an idiot on global television. China has one of the strongest militaries in the world. Imagine Trump calling Xi Jinping stupid. North Korea has threatened to use nuclear weapons on the United States because of our “hostile” policies. Imagine Trump tweeting insulting comments about Kim Jong Un’s excess body weight in the same way he insulted Carly Fiorina, one of his rivals in the 2016 race.
#2: Trump is a flip-flopper
Second, Trump is inconsistent and a habitual flip-flopper. He’s an opportunistic chameleon without principle or convictions. In fact, he’s changed parties at least five times.
Even now, when he’s running on a strongly conservative platform, he still isn’t true to the ideals of the conservative movement. Mother Jones recently published a list of ten liberal stances Trump takes on major conservative issues. He’s identified strongly with liberalism and the left before, calling himself “more of a Democrat” than a Republican.
He’s fine with funding Planned Parenthood, even after the horrifying videos that were released recently.
He’s donated extensively to Democratic candidates, including Hillary Clinton, with no explanation other than Trump wanted Clinton to come to his wedding.
#3: Trump is incompetent and unelectable
Finally, Trump is incapable of being President. He doesn’t have a solid track record. He doesn’t understand government. He doesn’t understand policy. He doesn’t understand the military. He doesn’t understand trustworthiness. He doesn’t understand true leadership. He quite simply isn’t capable of handling the one of the most potent military forces on the face of the earth, while balancing his obligations to the American people, and to our many and diverse allies.
He ran his companies into the ground four separate times. He does not offer any confidence that he can successfully balance the federal budget and deal with the massive federal debt, unlike other candidates such as John Kasich.
When Hugh Hewitt asked Trump for his opinions about the nuclear triad, he dodged the question, offered an incoherent answer, and generally destroyed any confidence that Trump could properly handle, maintain, and eventually replace America’s approximately 7100 nuclear warheads and their delivery systems.
His immigration plan released earlier this year is unrealistic, and is strikingly bare of any facts or figures or concrete proposals.
In his plan, he claims that he will make Mexico pay for a wall between the USA and Mexico, but provides no reason to believe that he can deliver on such a promise. A border wall would cost tens of billions of dollars, and is an idea that expets have labeled ‘ludicrous.’
In his plan, Trump refers to illegal immigrants and immigration 17 times. He doesn’t explicitly state that he’ll deport them in his policy paper, but in multiple interviews and speeches he promises to deport them, all 11 million of them, and has made doing so a central part of his immigration plan.
In spite of this, he fails to tell us how he plans to finance his deportation scheme. Estimates for the cost of deportation can reach $935 billion, depending on the method of calculation.
To put that into perspective, that’s enough to buy five iPad Air 2’s for every single American, including every child, every grandmother, every illegal immigrant, every politician, every student, everyone. Or, instead of iPads, you could use 935 billion dollars to give every resident of the United States a $3000 cash gift. If you don’t like free iPads or free cash, you could use 935 billion dollars to finance every single welfare program (other than Social Security and Medicare) for the next year.
Trump doesn’t deign, however, to even give us even a clue as to where that 935 billion dollars is coming from. He claims he’s going to make Mexico pay for at least the wall, but that’s not happening. Mexico’s total federal budget in 2014 was barely $350 billion. Certainly not Donald Trump, whose total net worth is a paltry $4 billion. If the American federal government foots the bill, that’s another nearly one trillion dollars tacked onto our growing national debt.
If Trump weathers the GOP primary, his abrasive nature, poor track record, and foreign policy incompetence will put him at a severe disadvantage compared to the Democratic nominee.
Even worse, if Trump defeats the Democratic nominee in the general election, those three factors will combine to render his presidency a disaster, both on the foreign policy and domestic fronts.