Our political Quote of the Day comes from MSNBC’s First Read which asks when Republicans will distance themselves from Donald Trump, a question more relevant than other now that Trump has started suggesting that Barack Obama was an affirmative action student in college and, today, all but broke his arm patting himself on the back when Obama released his long form birth certificate:
*** How low can you go? First, he raised doubts about whether President Obama was born in the United States. Then he accused him of not writing his best-selling “Dreams from My Father.” And now he’s charging that the nation’s first African-American president (and Harvard’s first Law Review president) of not deserving to get into Ivy League schools. What’s next? A “your mama” insult? The question is no longer whether Donald Trump has disqualified himself from being a serious presidential candidate (because he has, a long time ago). Instead, it’s whether he’s staining the GOP by association. How much longer can serious Republicans stay silent as Trump — who visits New Hampshire today — hijacks this whole process? Simply put, what Trump is doing is the equivalent of a GOP presidential candidate in 1995 campaigning on the Vince Foster rumors, or a candidate in 1968 suggesting that LBJ was connected to the Kennedy assassination. It is crazy conspiracy talk that has gone mainstream. And while Republicans quietly dismiss Trump as a sideshow, they aren’t saying a lot publicly. What are they afraid of?
Joe Gandelman is a former fulltime journalist who freelanced in India, Spain, Bangladesh and Cypress writing for publications such as the Christian Science Monitor and Newsweek. He also did radio reports from Madrid for NPR’s All Things Considered. He has worked on two U.S. newspapers and quit the news biz in 1990 to go into entertainment. He also has written for The Week and several online publications, did a column for Cagle Cartoons Syndicate and has appeared on CNN.