Donald Trump’s Phoenix Speech August 31

It was widely expected that Donald Trump, in what he claimed would be a major speech on immigration, would soften his earlier remarks on Mexican immigrants and Muslims in an attempt to appeal to educated white Republicans who so far have been reluctant to support him because of his perceived racist attitude.

If that was his goal, he failed last night. To put it in the mildest terms I can, his speech was designed to appeal to the cognitively challenged. There was nothing new in his speech. He repeated his promise to build a wall on the Mexican border and force Mexico to pay for it, something that any thinking person realizes is completely unrealistic. He claimed that there are two million criminal aliens in the United States with no explanation as to where he got that number. Neither can anyone else explain where he got that number. He did nothing to retract his earlier remarks about Muslims.

By Trump standards, it was not a bad speech. He read it from a TelePrompter, so he managed to avoid saying anything outrageously stupid. However, given the likelihood that the speech was written for him by (presumably) persons of higher intelligence, the speech was remarkable long on polemic and short on facts. I cannot understand how it could have appealed to anyone of above-average intelligence.

Donald Trump made it obvious that he is not used to reading his speeches. He spent most of the speech staring at the TelePrompter screen to his left. Occasionally, he would remember to look at the screen to his right for a few seconds before returning his attention to his left.

I heard on a newscast that Donald Trump claimed this morning that he had received a big bump in the polls following yesterday evening’s speech. I am unable to explain that. Was there some overnight poll taken that I am unaware of? By the time the speech ended, I imagine most people on the East Coast were already in bed.

We will have to see in the coming days if Donald Trump’s immigration speech really did improve his standing among educated white Republicans and independents. My guess is that it will not.

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