Donald Trump. Mass Murder, Absolution and the GOP Nomination

Donald Trump. Mass Murder, Absolution and the GOP Nomination

The aftermath of the murder of 49 people and wounding of 53 others has been sobering for many supporters of Donald Trump’s candidacy for President of the United States. As he said, he did predict an atrocity before the elections, and he proudly pointed to his foresight. What he did not do, immediately, was express horror or outrage. He did proudly express satisfaction that as usual, he had “told you so.”
When his omission was pointed out, he belatedly expressed sympathy while proudly repeating his earlier “prescience.” Subsequently, he and his campaign have become uncharacteristically quiet. This, however, has not stopped the drop in support for Trump in the latest polls.

Perhaps second thoughts, or for many the first rational thoughts, about such a man as President, have penetrated the heretofore closed minds of his supporters. Of course, those with total commitment to his major appeal—to bigotry, misogyny, racism, anger and hatred—will excuse his behavior. Still, some of his starstruck, sensation-seeking groupies may finally recognize that Trump is not a completely normal person. And, many who have been quiet, are speaking out against him.

How many of them, though, will recognize the “turning point” in this process as an opportunity to rescue the Republican Party from its own excesses? Paul Ryan Speaker of the GOP-dominated House of Representatives has “absolved” in advance Republications who “vote their conscience” in the November 2016 elections.

This “absolution” is, however, also a “test.” How will Trump’s supporters fare? How will the Party fare at the Convention in Cleveland in July? The slow attrition of Trump’s support may convince some of the “bound” delegates that a “conscience” vote (now approved by the GOP Speaker) should take precedence over their commitment to the voters. Will there be enough of them to prevent Trump’s nomination on the first ballot? A week ago, that was a pipe-dream. Today many are asking, “What’s next?”


John H. Langer, JD, Ed.D. Retired Federal agency manger, former professor of education, public school administrator, and writer of a number of articles and publications on education, public affairs, substance abuse and social issues. In writing a book on attention and memory as it relates to education, this blog is helping to focus attention n current issues, and hopefully, add something useful as well.

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