Joe Walsh’s Misguided Self-Serving Candidacy

Written by David E. Smith and John Biver

Some Illinoisans wonder how Joe Walsh morphed from a Trump-supporter into a Trump-hater so intense he’s decided to run against Trump in the 2020 primaries. What strikes many as odd about Walsh’s transformation is that Trump has accomplished much of what he promised and has governed more conservatively than many expected.

Perhaps Walsh, like other Trump-haters, paid too much attention to Trump’s tweets and too little attention to all the good Trump has accomplished for the American people, including record low unemployment among blacks and Hispanics, good judicial appointments, deregulation, moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem and defunding of Planned Parenthood. And perhaps Walsh has fed on the tripe offered by CNN, MSNBC and NPR, which long ago abandoned ethical journalism.

Since Walsh has chosen sides, the question becomes this: If Trump’s approval ratings are 90 percent or higher among Republicans and conservatives, where does Walsh look for support?

Clearly, the dominant media will be a big promoter of Walsh. A former Tea Party guy now a Trump critic is ratings and web traffic gold. Fans and supporters of Walsh’s Trump-bashing will be found throughout the Democratic Party and among left-wing activists and donors.

And of course, never forget the political consultants looking for work. Those consultants know how to reach out to Trump-hating wealthy donors on the left and the right who are ready to write checks.

If Walsh were to put together a real campaign, some high profile Never-Trumpers will also serve as cheerleaders. Unfortunately for Walsh though, the National Review, source of the “Never Trump” label, didn’t have much good to say in its first mention of Walsh’s candidacy. Shortly after Walsh’s potential run made news, National Review had this headline: “Joe Walsh Is Obviously Not the Answer.”

National Review senior political correspondent Jim Geraghty (and regular Trump critic) wrote: “While I’m sure Walsh and I would agree on a lot of the issues, particularly economic ones, I’m left underwhelmed.”

“In May 2011, five months into his term,” Geraghty writes that Walsh told Slate Magazine, “We are all better at certain things than others. I still am someone who doesn’t understand the way the legislative process works. I do, but I don’t. I can’t find my way around the Capitol. I have a hard time with protocol.”

Also from Geraghty: “In November 2011, [Walsh] lost his temper and screamed at a woman at a town hall meeting.”

When Walsh ran for reelection, Geraghty wrote, “[Walsh] was up against Tammy Duckworth, a Black Hawk helicopter pilot who lost her legs in combat in Iraq.” Geraghty wrote,

Walsh declared, “Now I’m running against a woman who, I mean, my God, that’s all she talks about. Our true heroes, the men and women who served us, it’s the last thing in the world they talk about.” He went on to lose by ten points.

Other Trump-hating, right-of-center magazines and websites will, on the other hand, enjoy covering Walsh’s candidacy.

Anti-Trumpers around the world will also support Walsh’s efforts. China, Iran, and Russia have all had problems with President Trump’s policies. They surely hope against hope that people within his own party can damage him going into the 2020 general election. So too will supporters of open borders, government-run health care, and even more deficit spending.

D.C. swamp critters will also be hoping Walsh can land a few blows. Just imagine the joy of deep-state operators who have yet to lay a glove on President Trump despite having the powers of the American law enforcement and intelligence agencies at their disposal.

Yes, that’s an ugly list, but it’s also an accurate picture of the kind of people who agree with Walsh’s goal of getting Donald Trump out of the White House.

Others, however, view Trump’s presidency as the best since Ronald Reagan. The  website Promises Kept highlights fourteen areas that the Trump Administration has had significant successes, including the  “Economy and Jobs,” “Immigration,” “Regulation” and “Law and Justice.”

Does anyone really believe Walsh can do better than that?

President Trump’s performance in office has won over even many of his former conservative critics. His rising approval rating among Hispanics and blacks is the highest ever seen for a Republican president.

Now that the Russia collusion hoax has been exposed, the latest attack on President Trump is that he’s a racist. That’s as silly as Russian collusion and equally lacking in evidence. On the topic of Trump as a racist, here is a group of black Americans speaking out on the matter in a must-watch short video.

One writer summed up another reason for President Donald Trump’s support:

Has there been a president in living memory who relishes a fight more than Trump? I don’t think so. That is a major reason why he remains popular with conservatives and has seen his favorability ratings rise.

Sure, I like President Trump’s actions on job-killing regulations, tax relief, border security, energy independence, military funding, judicial appointments, and so on. But what really invigorates me and millions of other Never-Trumpers is that he is fearless—impervious to attacks by his adversaries and merciless in responding to them.

Trump is an oddity: A Republican president who stands up to the Left’s defamations and brickbats and returns fire. His prickly personality is one driving force; another is Twitter, the social media megaphone he uses to bypass the legacy media’s censors.

Some of what Walsh has been saying in recent media interviews has been incomprehensible. Walsh doesn’t like President Trump’s personality and believes he’s bad for politics and for civic discourse. Walsh says the president is a bully, a liar, and indecent, but here’s a recent headline: “Joe Walsh says GOP primary voters tired of Trump’s ‘daily bullsh**.’” That’s Walsh’s idea of decency?

Walsh also says Trump puts our country in danger every single day:

If I [run against President Trump], I’m going to punch him in the face every single day…. I’m going to call him out because I think he’s an absolute con man who is a danger to the party and the country.

People who know Walsh believe he is motivated to pursue this absurd attempt to unseat Trump because he was about to lose his radio gig. One tried and true path to a new political job is to run for governor or some other high office. That “former candidate” résumé-enhancement is surprisingly valued by media outlets when they’re looking to hire someone. If you run against Trump, you certainly are auditioning for a contributor spot on CNN, MSNBC, or maybe even Fox.

One Trump supporter who had worked hard on Walsh’s congressional campaign nine years ago reminded me that Walsh’s line on the trail was, “I feel that I’m losing my country.” This Trump fan and now Walsh critic then said, “Finally we’re starting to get our country back.”

While the president has accomplished a lot, there is much more work that needs to be done and so much more swamp-draining and disruption from which to benefit. If Trump loses in 2020, progress will stop. President Trump knows how to get stuff done.

Instead of running for president, Walsh should do something constructive. He should help conservatives get serious about fighting and winning the information war. And he should recruit and help elect more fiscally sane conservatives to the U.S. House and U.S. Senate. Such an important nationwide role could be as rewarding as being anti-Trump, though it probably wouldn’t attract as much media coverage.

So, Joe, what’s more important?

Read more:

Joe Walsh Challenging Trump in the Primaries (Part 1)

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