Have you heard of the Democrats for Trump?
They don't actually like the real estate magnate-turned-candidate. In fact, they despise him, and most wouldn't vote for a Republican. Ever.
But there's an element of the Democratic electorate that gleefully celebrates with every Trump primary win, applauding every time the brash candidate defies the GOP elite or reminds voters that he's going to build a "terrific" wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.
"When he won South Carolina, there was celebrating at my house," Salon columnist Amanda Marcotte wrote. "When he won Nevada, I did a happy dance. When pundits on TV say in shocked, repulsed tones that his nomination is starting to look inevitable, I say, 'Damn skippy.'"
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Democrats like Marcotte are rooting for Trump in the Republican primaries because they think he's the least likely to appeal to American voters, the least likely to win a general election. They say they'll take Trump any day over a candidate like Marco Rubio, the sole remaining "safe" choice for Republicans who think voters appreciate an empty suit.
Some of them even like to fantasize about how, with Trump and Hillary Clinton a lock for their respective nominations, GOP voters who dislike Trump will join independents and elect Clinton in a landslide. Sure. Then Gandalf will show up with fireworks, Elvis will come out of hiding, and Bigfoot will prove cryptozoologists right by sashaying on stage with Clinton and doing a funky dance.
Hey... wake up!
The truth is, Republicans are just as likely to vote for Clinton as Democrats are to vote for Trump. Both candidates are deeply unpopular among the general electorate, mirroring each other in polls that measure favorability ratings.
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If Trump wins, which looks increasingly likely, some Republicans might grumble, but the thought of Clinton in the White House -- and selecting Supreme Court nominees -- will be more than enough motivation for them to grudgingly vote for Trump.
As for independents, that's a wash. Both candidates poll horribly among independents, who have the dubious honor of selecting between an uncouth, billionaire loudmouth and a fundamentally dishonest politician who's reinvented herself a thousand times and has the FBI breathing down her neck.
But Democrats ought to think about the devils they know. Clinton has been in public life for more than three decades, with a senate record to criticize, and a state department tenure that was marked by controversy. Most Americans have made up their minds about her.
Trump, by contrast, has no voting record, and has proven so far impervious to attacks that correctly point out his lack of specific policy positions. The campaigns of traditional candidates like Rubio can be measured by polls, and their performances can be predicted to a reasonably accurate degree. Trump has proved a wild card with staying power far beyond the "Summer of Trump" that was supposed to be his swan song before he went back to reality TV. He's embarrassed pollsters, frustrated political analysts, and might have a few more tricks up his sleeve in the general election.
As the saying goes, be careful what you wish for.