In a crash and burn that made Sarah Palin look smart, Donald Trump could not define conservative during an interview on CBS’s Face The Nation.
DICKERSON: What is your definition of conservative?
TRUMP: Well, I think it’s a person that doesn’t want to take overly risks. I think that’s a good thing.
I think it’s a person that wants to — in terms of government I’m talking about, a person that wants to conserve, a person that wants to, in a financial sense, balance budgets, a person that feels strongly about the military. And I feel very strongly about the military.
And you have some of these people, they don’t even want to focus on the military. Our military is falling apart. I feel very, very — and I have always felt very, very strongly about the military.
By the way, if you look at vision, when you look at the word vision, I was the one that said take the oil. I have been saying that for years. And I said take the oil, let’s take the oil. And nobody would listen. Then, all of a sudden, after Paris, they started saying, maybe that’s right, we will take the oil.
They still don’t do it the proper way.
DICKERSON: You mean from ISIS.
TRUMP: And I was — which is a little bit different than a normal conservative, but I was very much opposed to the war in Iraq.
A lot of these guys were all for the war in Iraq. Look what’s that has got us. We spent $2 trillion. We lost thousands of lives. We have nothing. We’re now handing Iraq over, just handing it over to Iran. Iran is going to take over Iraq. And I said that was going to happen. I said that years ago, 2003, 2004, that Iran will take over Iraq with the largest oil reserves in the world.
And that’s not a conservative position. When I was saying, don’t go into Iraq, I’m a very militaristic person. I’m very much into the military, and will build our military bigger, better, stronger than ever before. But — and that’s safe. That’s actually the cheapest thing to do, as opposed to what we have right now. But I was opposed to the war in Iraq. Most conservatives were, let’s go, gung-ho. These guys, just about all of them, every one of them wanted the war in Iraq. Look what it got us.
Donald Trump’s “definition” of conservative is someone who behaves conservatively. I guess that settles that. Of course, the problem is that Trump claims that is conservative because he does not want to take risks. However, not taking risks is a trait of conservativism, not a definition. By definition, a conservative person is one who expresses caution towards change or innovation.
Trump’s definition of conservative is full of contradictions. He opposed the Iraq war, but wants to take all of the oil for the US. If he is opposed to war, how is he going to get the oil? Is he just going to ask nicely? In government conservatives traditionally don’t conserve or balance budgets. No Republican administration in the last half century has been as fiscally responsible as the Obama administration.
Trump has no political ideology. When asked point blank, he couldn’t define conservative. Donald Trump is the leader for the Republican nomination, but he can’t define conservatism. He is poised to become the leader of a party that he knows nothing about.
The Republican frontrunner is making Sarah Palin look smart, as the Trump train wreck is poised to derail the entire Republican Party.
Mr. Easley is the founder/managing editor and Senior White House and Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association