TRUMP'S EARLY CAMPAIGN IS AT A PIVOT POINT CATALYZED BY HIS PERSONAL COUNTER-ATTACK ON JOHN MC CAIN --- THIS FLAP IS A TEST OF TRUMP'S STAYING POWER
MOST REPORTS OF DONALD TRUMP'S INTERVIEW ON "THE O'REILLY FACTOR" HAD MR. TRUMP WALKING BACK HIS COMMENTS ABOUT JOHN MC CAIN --- INSTEAD I'LL SAY THAT TRUMP PRETTY MUCH STOOD HIS GROUND AND EXECUTED A BRILLIANT PIVOT ON WHAT, A VERY HOSTILE TO TRUMP, FOX CALLS ITS "MOST WATCHED" CABLE NEWS PROGRAM
IN A DOWN TO EARTH TAKE ON ALL THIS --- THE NEW YORK TIMES SAYS THAT EVEN TRUMP'S CRITICS NOTE THAT --- AS A RESULT OF TRUMP, VETERANS' ISSUES HAVE NOT HAD THIS MUCH ATTENTION IN YEARS
There has been a lot of parsing and analyzing what Donald Trump did or didn't say to Bill O'Reilly last night. Most of it is pure BS. I'll use the WSJ version as a typical one, because I don't like the phony headline the Fox folks put on their own skewed report of the O'Reilly show. [BTW, it doesn't matter much because Rupert Murdoch has put the word out, ala Wlliam Randolph Hearst, John Foster Kane and Gale Wynand (Hmmm! sounds familiar), to take down Trump whatever it takes.]
WALL STREET JOURNAL GIVES TRUMP-O'REILLY INTERVIEW TYPICAL TREATMENTAccording to the Wall Street Journal's Rebecca Ballhaus, "Presidential candidate Donald Trump said he respects Sen. John McCain and insisted that he didn’t malign the Arizona Republican’s war record — but said that if there was a “misunderstanding” over his words, he would take them back.... 'I have respect for Sen. McCain. I used to like him a lot. I supported him. I raised a lot of money for his campaign against President Obama and certainly if there was a misunderstanding, I would totally take that back,' Mr. Trump told Fox News’s Bill O’Reilly on Monday night.... The latest remarks come after a tumultuous weekend for Mr. Trump, who has surged to the top of the splintered GOP presidential field but has alienated a good portion of the party, first with comments about immigrants a few weeks ago, and then the comments about Mr. McCain...." ( See "Trump Takes Step Toward Making Peace With GOP" by Rebecca Ballhaus, 7/20/15 - 11:30 PM EDT, The Wall Street Journal[http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2015/07/20/donald-trump-takes-step-toward-making-peace-with-gop/]).
The WSJ article also pointed out that "... Mr. Trump’s comments Monday came following the release of a Washington Post/ABC News poll showing the real estate mogul with a double-digit lead over the rest of the GOP field nationally. The poll found Mr. Trump with 24% support among Republican primary voters, compared to 13% for Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker and 12% for former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush...."
MAYBE, THE NY TIMES HAS STUMBLED ONTO SOMETHING ABOUT THE TRUMP PHENOMENON --- LOOK AT WHAT'S HAPPENED TO THE WHOLE VETERANS ISSUE IN THE LAST FEW DAYSAn interesting counterpoint to all of this Trump-McCain brouhaha appears in the NY Times coverage of the Trump-O'REilly-McCain segment on "The Factor" (See "Veterans’ Groups Take Their Shots at Donald Trump as He Backs Off a Bit on McCain" by Jeremy W. Peters, 7/20/15, NY Times/ Politics[http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/21/us/politics/veterans-groups-take-their-shots-at-trump-as-he-backs-off-a-bit-on-mccain.html?_r=0]).
In spite of its very negative sounding title, this particular Times' article concluded with the following:
"... Even some of Mr. Trump’s allies said that they would not quibble with Mr. McCain’s record. 'Don’t get me wrong, I think John McCain is strong on veterans’ issues,' said Joel Arends, chairman of Veterans for a Strong America, which defended Mr. Trump over the weekend in a statement that his campaign issued in a news release.... 'The problem is not John McCain’s record. The problem is how do we run government and is government going to be responsive to men and women who’ve laid their lives on the line for this country,' Mr. Arends said, adding that he believed Mr. Trump had hit a nerve by identifying the inefficiencies and breakdowns in veterans’ services.... Some advocates said they were hoping that the glare of media attention that Mr. Trump has turned on them would be of benefit. 'I’ve gotten more media calls today than I probably have in the last 11 years,' Mr. Rieckhoff [head of a veterans group that criticized Trump] said. 'But this is a bigger conversation than whether or not Trump said something stupid.' ”