Donald Trump would make a great president. Unabashedly pro-American, the toughest business negotiator in the country and with name ID and charisma greater than any of those currently contemplating the race, Trump would bring excitement to the 2012 race. Stoutly pro-tax cut and libertarian on social issues like abortion, Trump is a Republican with the business know-how to turn the country’s economy around. In recent weeks Trump has been urged to run and has said he is considering it.
I’ve seen this before. In 1988 Trump made a testing-the-waters trip to speak to the Plymouth, New Hampshire Chamber of Commerce. The standing-room-only crowd was five times larger than then-frontrunner George H.W. Bush could draw. In the end, Trump determined that Vice President Bush’s head start was insurmountable.
In 2000, Trump could have won the Reform Party nomination. I chaired his presidential exploratory committee. Then-governor of Minnesota Jesse Ventura urged him to go for it. Trump had both the money and the support to topple Patrick J. Buchanan, whose Reform Party candidacy seemed to be more about getting his hands on the party’s federal matching funds. Trump opted out after winning several straw polls of Reform Party members.
Few remember that Trump was among the first in the country to recognize the danger of radical Islam. In his 2000 book The America we Deserve, Trump actually predicted the 9/11 attack on America. When it comes to the recent actions of the North Koreans, I for one would sleep better with Trump in the White House instead of the naive and hapless Barrack Obama.
The truth is Trump, by his own admission, has a great life. He loves the real estate business. He loves Manhattan. He loathes traveling. He likes sleeping in his own bed and would be the first to tell you he doesn’t suffer fools gladly. While he is a strong TV performer, he has little belly for the retail end of politics. He doesn’t like shaking hands with people when he doesn’t know where their hands have been (who does?).
What Trump does like is publicity and he knows that being mentioned for the Casa Blanca is great publicity. In the end, I don’t think he will run — and that’s a shame.
Roger Stone is a well known Republican political consultant and is a veteran of eight national Republican presidential campaigns. He’s also the men’s fashion correspondent for The Daily Caller and editor of Stonezone.com.