The Dow Jones opened down over 1,000 points Monday to the consternation of most investors — but to the likely political benefit of one Donald J. Trump.
Those once again predicting we’ve reached “peak Trump” may need to reevaluate that position if the market continues to slide. Trump is the type of candidate who will only benefit in a period of economic uncertainty, or even calamity.
Trump’s whole campaign pitch is that he is the billionaire businessman who will save America from the rapacious special interests, greedy investors and “cunning” foreign actors that have combined to sell America’s middle class down the river. Only a man of his accomplishment, ability and insider knowledge, he preaches, can make America great again.
If the stock market continues to head south and Americans begin to fear for their economic future, Trump’s appeal will only increase, especially when none of his rivals can boast the type of business experience or success he does. Trump is already viewed as best able to handle the economy by Republican voters by a wide margin, according to a recent CNN poll.
Now, this is not to say that any of this should be the case. Trump’s economic proposals could very well lead to trade wars and economic catastrophe. But for many ordinary Americans who see the stock market crater and fear the world may soon fall in around them, there could very well be a desire to seek the safety of a strongman, especially one who promises he’ll make all their problems go away if America just trusts him with the reigns of power.