It’s The Economy, Donald

Many are starting to notice something I’ve dropped a few posts on recently, namely that Trump should forgo most of his typical talking points and focus on the economy. In this case, it is Rob Carver at the Fiscal Times

At this point, Donald Trump has only the thinnest of reeds to cling to in his effort to prevent his campaign from sinking out of sight. It’s not the fantastical claim that he’s going to capture the African-American vote. He’s not; especially not if he keeps doing things like this. It’s not the myth of “missing voters” who will magically appear to carry him to victory in November. And it’s certainly not the ongoing effort to convince voters that, against all evidence, Hillary Clinton is secretly battling a deadly illness.

It’s the economy, stupid.

Trump is the candidate of the frustrated and the angry who feel that they have been left behind by a country and an economy that simply doesn’t look the way it used to. And the news Friday that the Commerce Department had downgraded the already dismal second quarter GDP numbers from an annualized 1.2 percent to 1.1 percent is the sort of thing that, if he had the self-control to avoid unnecessary distractions, he would be hammering on night and day.

Once again, what Americans care about foremost are bread and butter issues. How is the health of the economy affecting themselves and those they know. What’s their pay look like. Does their company sound safe? What’s their cost of living. Everything else, no matter how important it seems at the time (seriously, while the Colin Kaepernick sitting during the national anthem seems huge, does it matter, or is it just a distraction?). This is what people want to know about.

In fact, when it comes to fixing the economy, economists across the political spectrum are remarkably agreed on the question of whether or not Trump is the man to do it. In a brutal article published Friday, The Wall Street Journal surveyed 45 economists who have served on the White House Council of Economic Advisers under one of the past eight presidents. Not a single one of them said that they would support Trump.

But for Trump, the blessing of the elites doesn’t matter. Economic uncertainty is like fertilizer for the worries that he is trying to plant in the minds of voters, and if his new campaign team has any sense at all, they will be advising him to play up the state of the economy in his public appearances and to play down the ridiculous promises about his ultimate victory with minority voters.

Instead of making those appeals to minority voters (note: he still hasn’t made an appeal to Conservatives specifically yet), he should talk about the economics that affect them, and everyone. In all fairness, his recent speech about the state of blacks did touch on a lot of the bad economic numbers that plague black communities. Obviously, that wasn’t covered by the oh-so-neutral media. Trump should give speeches that do not include Other Things, distraction things, talking about himself things, that allow the media to focus on things other than the economy.

Trump plans on giving a “yuge” immigration speech on Wednesday (if it doesn’t get cancelled again) in Arizona to lay out (supposedly) his full plan. While some care about this a lot, and most are interested in this issue, it is not a win-the-general-election issue. It’s not going to move the needle beyond Trump’s base.

If Trump is going to talk about any issues, they need to be put specifically in terms of the economy. People want to know what a Donald Trump presidency will do for their wallets. He needs to tell them, and contrast that with what a Hillary economy will look like.

Crossed at Pirate’s Cove. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach.

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