|Hillary Clinton found the perfect moment for an attack on Trump's|
alt-right affiliation, and she grabbed it.
Donald Trump knows what he's doing. It doesn't mean he's right to do it. It just means it's not an accident. It might not work, but it's actually a strategy. A little shoot-from-the-hip (or lip), but it's a style, a plan, a chosen artifice.
Donald Trump may or may not be a racist, but by now it hardly matters. At some point in his campaign, he embraced the "poorly educated" whites -- mostly men -- who have seen their world overrun by brown people, GLBTs, and women, and gathered those whites into a coalition. At some point, that began to attract the white nationalists of the alt-right. He also welcomed them into his tent.
Now he may wish that he hadn't. But he did, and that's that. Standing around saying he's not a racist, a xenophobe, a nativist, won't work. And his baldly phony move, calling Hillary Clinton a "BIGOT" won't work either. Too late to swiftboat.
On the other hand, Hillary Clinton grabbed the right moment to deliver a near-perfect speech decrying Donald Trump's embrace of the alt-right. The proof in the pudding was Trump's hiring of Stephen Bannon, the senior editor, as it were, of the alt-right. Now they were joined at the hip. And Hillary pounced.
The reviews are in. Clinton triumphed. The just-at-the-right-time speech, just as Donald was trying to pivot away from his overly harsh immigration stand, caught Trump flat-footed. He's got no answer other than the schoolyard taunt, "No, you're the bigot!"
Sorry, Donald. Hillary's constituency is the new Democratic coalition, same as the old one. Yours, on the other hand, is laced with the paranoid fringe. Snap!
Hillary Clinton's speech pointing out the dangerous ideology of hate and fear that's riven the GOP base in the Era of Trump may not be the nail in the coffin of Donald Trump's run for the White House. But it sure let the air out of the tires of the clown car in which he arrived. Only thing, it's not funny anymore. These are not clowns, these are dangerous demagogues.
Clinton's written the script now. Perhaps she can ride it into the Oval Office.
Note. It's easy to see that among mainstream voices that Clinton's attack is effective and well-timed. Here's a voice claiming that Clinton is, by paying it attention, somehow legitimizing, or mainstreaming, the alt-right. I don't buy it. By pointing out that Donald Trump has mainstreamed the alt-right, Clinton isn't the one doing the mainstreaming. Nice try, but sorry. Clinton's acknowledgement of the moment racism, nativism, and xenophobia went public and pointing at Trump for urging it along doesn't fall on Clinton. It lands on Donald Trump with a well-deserved thud.