Anticipating the pivot (again)

Anticipating the pivot (again)

by digby

Paul Waldman makes an important request of the news media in advance of Trumps speech tonight that will undoubtedly fall on deaf ears:

I beseech everyone, particularly my colleagues in the media: Can we please not grade Trump on a curve?

If there’s something he does or says that’s worthy of praise — a truly compelling new argument for his candidacy, a rhetorical flourish that brings a tear to the eye of every viewer, a newfound eloquence — then by all means give it the tribute it deserves. But let’s not forget that simply reading a speech off a teleprompter is not in and of itself a praiseworthy accomplishment.

It’s a little hard to know what in particular to expect from Trump’s address, because unlike many presidential candidates, he didn’t have a standard stump speech that he delivered with only minor variations time and again on the campaign trail. Instead, Trump would get up before crowds and free-associate, rambling on about whatever popped into his mind, though a big chunk of every speech was taken up with reciting his terrific poll numbers and his fantastic results in previous primaries, lest anyone forget how great he was doing and how much everyone loved him. While there were often exciting moments — telling supporters to beat up a protester, mocking a disabled reporter, tossing out his latest bit of xenophobic fear-mongering — those covering the events regularly reported how boring the speeches were; at about the 45-minute mark, attendees who had waited on line for hours to get in often started drifting away.

In part because his events generally showcase a bizarre combination of tedium and brownshirt rally, on the few occasions where Trump has delivered a prepared speech, pundits acted as though he were an eight-year-old giving his first clarinet recital. It barely mattered what it actually contained; he was lauded for getting all the way through it without doing anything shocking or offensive. Look at how “disciplined” he’s become! He stuck to the script! There were no insults thrown at minority groups! This new Trump really looks presidential!
Yeah, well good luck with that:

Breaking: Trump's acceptance speech written in part by GW Bush speechwriters Matthew Scully &John McConnell. Source says it's "presidential"
— Jonathan Alter (@jonathanalter) July 21, 2016

It's hopeless. On the other hand, we know that Melania Trump's speech was written by the same duo and she allegedly threw it out. Does anyone think Trump wouldn't do the same thing?

He will almost certainly be unable to resist doing some call and response on the The Wall. I'm just curious to see if he inspires some "lock her up" chants.  I think there's a pretty good chance he will.