Will Trump soften his style?

Ann

I found this an interesting opinion piece. I agree, if Trump took it down a notch, he'd practically guarantee a win and, potentially, a landslide win. But, I don't know if Trump is capable of softening. I think, if he loses, it will be because of his rough around the edges style and not because of his opponent.

I'll vote for him either way because I simply love his policy, the economy, the judicial appointments, and what he is doing for the future of this country, but I did find this opinion piece interesting.


https://thehill.com/opinion/white-house/473254-the-only-thing-trump-has-to-fear-in-2020-is-trump-himself

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margaux

No. He has gotten rid of everyone who has tried to soften him and put in their place those who say "Let Trump be Trump."

But being vulgar — in public, no less — isn’t the way to win the hearts and minds and votes of suburban college-educated moderate swing voters — especially women — a group the GOP lost in the 2018 midterms and that the president will need to win reelection.

What do you suppose makes suburban college-educated moderate voters who have voted GOP in the past so different from those who enthusiastically embrace Trump? Why did they vote Dem in 2018?

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Carro

Ann, I get the sentiment and sure, Trump could take it down a nacho. I think it could help sway independents and women. So, yeah, he could give it the old college try.

Can't hurt. Look at this this way; the silver lining is that it will chap the haters to no end!

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Carro

When it comes to pulling the lever, Americans are going to vote their wallets.

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socks(10a)

He cannot change, he's stuck in his miserable lane.

How do you like the debt? Maybe you don't have kids or grandkids. We will hand them massive debt and a declining planet. Works for you.

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Ann

Margaux, frankly, I think 2018 was pretty par for the course for a first midterm election and doesn't tell us too much about 2020 - and pretty much nothing about a Trump reelection. Obama was blistered worse that Trump in his first midterm and he went on to win reelection. I think midterm and general elections are two different beasts.

Those of us who enthusiastically support Trump tend to love his policy and the direction he is taking the country. More moderate swing voters may happen to like bits and pieces of both Dem and GOP policy and put more emphasis on Trump's personality - not sure - just thinking out loud. But, we'll see how much the great economy mattered when we view the 2020 election in retrospect.

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Carro

How do you like the Democrats' plan to bankrupt us? MFA is how many trillion? Giving illegals free healthcare is how many trillion? Free college for everyone including illegals is how many trillion?

I mean seriously, you can't think that works?

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Carro

Ann

Margaux, frankly, I think 2018 was pretty par for the course for a first midterm election and doesn't tell us too much about 2020 - and pretty much nothing about a Trump reelection.

Ann, I think most Americans are unaware of the midterm election phenomenon.


Your side lost. Your're motivated. You're paying attention. You vote. Boom, there's your "wave".

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Ann

Socks, I don't like the debt and I didn't like the debt in the previous administration. But, with that said, I most certainly don't think Medicare for all and the Green New Deal are going to help with debt (said with great but not mean spirited sarcasm). Neither party has done us any favors when it comes to debt - that's for certain!!!!!

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Ann

Carro, we overlapped about debt, with the same thoughts:)

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Carro

How could I forget the GND!? Yeah, add those trillions in, too.

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margaux

I think he lost 2018 because of policy. I think putting kids in cages and losing track of other kids horrified educated moderate women, and those images were in their minds as they went to the voting booth. No accomplishments on healthcare will also hurt him. Last I heard he has abandoned prescription drug price reform. Talk about voting your wallets. Do you think seniors care more about illegal immigration than what they pay for prescriptions? Only if they're glued to Fox News.

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Ann

"No accomplishments on healthcare will also hurt him."

Healthcare is brutal as a topic for either side. Just look how it has impacted Warren. The Dems were touting healthcare as their number one issue, and seem to be backing away from that quite a bit - because IMO, it's divisive and ever so complicated. Warren might just die on that healthcare hill.

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Ann

"Do you think seniors care more about illegal immigration than what they pay for prescriptions? "

Margaux, I'm not on Medicare yet, so haven't purchased prescriptions through a Part D or Advantage plan yet. So, I can't really opine on this topic because I'm not sure what kind of RX coverage these plans provide to the majority of seniors.

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Kitchenwitch111

I always laugh when I think back to when people said Trump would become "Presidential". He's always been a boorish buffoon and he always will be. Isn't that why his people voted for him? "I like the way he talks" and "He says what we are thinking" is what I often hear from his supporters.

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miss lindsey (She/Her)(8a)

“Will Trump soften his style?”

No.

Personality, habit, empowerment, and failing health (dementia?) all make it extremely unlikely that he has the capacity to change, much less the will.

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Carro

Healthcare will be prominent in the general election. I think it's an equalizer.

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Iris GW

^^ Then Trump won't do very well if healthcare is a prominent topic. He has the most miserable of track records on what he would do.

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patriceny

I don't think he can soften his style. I so wish he would.

I continue to struggle with his behavior and his words.

I'm one of the swing voters. I'm pretty libertarian, want minimal governmental intrusion into my personal life. Democratic platforms tend to push me away, and the far left is delusional (IMO, obviously).

I usually vote a split ticket as I pick people based on very specific things. I don't have a clue what I'm going to do in this next election - and I do really agree with the article.

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queenmargo

I will support Trump whether he softens or not. I can not stomach a liberal in office anymore. Not after what they have done to us Trump supporters along with Trump himself, which is over the top insane. I would take his crass any day over a socialist agenda.

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queenmargo

Hi Ann, nice to have you back on HT;)

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Ann

Interesting post from you, Patriceny.

I agree, he probably can't soften his style.


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Ann

Thanks Margo! I hadn't left HT but was out of town and had a terrible or non-existent internet connection. It was so painfully slow (when I even had a connection), I just gave up.

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Carro

The thing is, Trump hasn't been dominating the media by being soft and cuddly.

So, it might be all strategic.

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mudhouse

Good thread, Ann, thank you. I read the thread, and I thought I knew what I wanted to say, and then I read the (good) article by Bernie Goldberg. Now I want to think about it a bit. I'll be back. ;-)


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woodnymph2_gw

I don't think Trump is capable of softening his style. He seems to be digging in his heels as time passes. Part of his personality disorder is poor impulse control. Thus, all the constant tweets filled with vitriol. Trump thinks he is always right and he never apologizes.

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Annie Deighnaugh

Soften his style?

No way.

He's only getting worse with time.

And his style is only one small element of why he's engendered such a visceral reaction from so many...and probably one of the least important.

His ceding our national sovereignty to russia and filling the WH with yes men, authoritarians, racists and felons is far more important, as is his constant thumbing his nose at the Constitution and the rule of law. The economy can never be worth destroying our freedoms for.

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dublinbay z6 (KS)

Ann

Margaux, frankly, I think 2018 was pretty par for the course for a first midterm election and doesn't tell us too much about 2020 - and pretty much nothing about a Trump reelection.

Carro

Ann, I think most Americans are unaware of the midterm election phenomenon.

Your side lost. Your're motivated. You're paying attention. You vote. Boom, there's your "wave".

------------------------------

The midterm 2018 election was not "par for the course." It signaled a lot more than you are admitting.


"2018 wasn't a blue wave. It was a blue tsunami

[. . .]

As has oft been repeated, this is the largest Democratic House gain since 1974. . . .

We can go back even further and see how unusual it is that Democrats picked up this many seats. If you go back all the way to first election of the post-World War II era (1946), there have only been three elections in which Democrats net gained more seats than they did in 2018. Put another way, this was the fourth best performance for Democrats in the 37 general House electionssince President Donald Trump was born.

Another way to judge an election is by how many votes each side wins. Democrats' position in the national House popular vote is now reaching historical proportions.

[. . .]

This year's 8.6 point House popular vote win for the Democrats is the greatest on record for a minority party heading into an election. This dates all the way back to 1942, when the Clerk of the House started listing the House popular vote in its after-election statistics document. That is, the Democratic performance this year was better than the minority party's in the previous 38 elections.

The Democrats won by a wider margin this year than Democrats did in 2006 or Republicans did in 1994 or 2010. They beat the previous record of 8.5 points Republicans won by in 1946. . . .

[. . .]

The 2018 large turnout allowed House Democrats to win about 10 million more votes than House Republicans. That's the largest raw vote margin in a House midterm election ever.

This wasn't just a blue wave in the House. It was a tsunami."

------------------------

For the record.

Kate

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patriceny

If Bernie Sanders wins, I will cry. You heard it here first. :)

And honestly, that's probably my biggest fear right now. Trump is polarizing and the margins are pretty slim. I personally can't believe Bernie is polling in second place in the dem primary...but he is. Sigh. So the guy currently has a chance to actually be the dem nominee. From there who knows what will happen..

It was a good article/opinion piece Ann, thank you for posting it.

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nancy_in_venice_ca Sunset 24 z10

In the 2018 mid-term elections, the Democrats won the most House seats since Watergate; not the normal mid-term loss for the party in the White House.

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Ann

Nancy, maybe Dem seats, but I believe the GOP won even more GOP House seats in Obama's first midterm. I'm not motivated to look it up right now, but that's what I remember from when I last checked.

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Linda

Who cares? At this point, his absolute desperation to avoid being put out of office doesn't even matter!

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gyr_falcon(Sunset 23)

No, for someone that lies with every breath, he oddly is not sufficiently skilled to be convincing via fakery. Apparently it is not atypical that many of his supporters think dominating the media is a quality to desire in a president. His Telling You the Lies You Want to Hear rallies show that many supporters want the fakery so badly, they will ignore the poor quality of the performance to embrace it. Funny the sentiment up-thread is a lament that if he could just fake it with a little more skill, he might sway more people to embrace the fake and vote for him. That is like saying "Dang, I wish there were more gullible people to buy this snake oil I'm trying to sell." lol

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Ann

I'll agree that Trump isn't skilled with convincing via fakery. Many politicians are outstanding with that, but not Trump (or Bernie).

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Ann

Bill Clinton was a master at it, IMO.

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Cookie8

Why would he? I mean, he is president... with his brand.


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miss lindsey (She/Her)(8a)

“Bill Clinton was a master at it, IMO.”

Really?

I always think everyone could see him for exactly who he is.

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mudhouse

I agree with Cookie. Why would he?

Trump is what you see, and it's unlikely he could separate out the controversial parts of his style from the rest of the qualities that have allowed him to defeat all of his opponents (in both parties) in 2016. And now those same qualities will allow him to survive a three-year-long effort to remove him from office. Trump goes all out, and fights hard.

I think his style and methods, love them or hate them, are too intertwined with what has brought him an undeniable degree of fame and success. He's a billionaire, he's president of the United States, millions of people support him, he has a good relationship with his ex-spouses, and his kids love and respect him. You can sneeze at his fame, and point at his failures and controversies, but his accomplishments still exist.

So if some of Trump's life-long, audacious, take-no-prisoners brand is an entrenched part of his brand, why would he change it, now?

I agree his success with voters is mostly due to his popular policies, and a base that was ready for someone to advance the issues they care about. But his style gets him endless national media attention, and it makes his personality unique in presidential politics. He's impossible to ignore or forget. I can't see him giving that up, because polls show he needs to raise support among suburban college-educated women.

His whole life, Trump has always run the risk of making missteps that hurt him. He accepts the risk, takes the lumps, and averages them in. He makes mistakes, and he never apologizes. In aggregate, the gains he's made by being Trump (so far) are outweighed by the losses he's suffered by being Trump.

If Trump goes down in 2020, I think he'll go down being Trump.

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margaux

You almost make him sound noble, mudhouse. The true measure of his character will be how he handles defeat in 2020. If he responds in typical Trump fashion, lashing out at everyone and calling the election fake and rigged, what will your opinion be of him then?

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Carro

margaux

You almost make him sound noble, mudhouse. The true measure of his character will be how he handles defeat in 2020.

The Left's tantrum is still ongoing. What shall we compare it to?


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margaux

It's not a tantrum over defeat, Carro.

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queenmargo

The true measure of his character will be how he handles defeat in 2020.


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Ann

Perfectly placed meme, Margo.

Margaux, that's too many what ifs for me. First, I think he'll likely win. Then, if he doesn't, we really have no clue how he'll react to the loss. But, if he loses, I'll be happy to watch how he reacts and tell you how I feel about his reaction next November.

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mudhouse

You almost make him sound noble, mudhouse.

Well, I admire Trump.

The true measure of his character will be how he handles defeat in 2020.

So sure of defeat? I'm not.

If he responds in typical Trump fashion, lashing out at everyone and calling the election fake and rigged,

Lol, gotta disagree with the premise of that question.

what will your opinion be of him then?

I doubt my opinion of Trump will change whether he wins or loses. If he wins I'll be happy for the country, and if he loses, I'll still think another four years would have been the best outcome.

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margaux

If Biden, say, loses and lashes out, saying it was rigged, I know what my opinion would be of him. I don't have to wait until November to know myself.

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margaux

I doubt my opinion of Trump will change whether he wins or loses. If he wins I'll be happy for the country, and if he loses, I'll still think another four years would have been the best outcome.

That's not what I asked.

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mudhouse

I know hypothetical questions about negative things happening to Trump are popular with some here, but they're just not my thing. So, no thanks.

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dublinbay z6 (KS)

Hey, queenmargo found that HOAX that Trump keeps talking about (see meme above).

According to SNOPES,

--------------------------

"Leonardo DiCaprio Endorses Trump?

A tweet purportedly showing Leonardo DiCaprio pledging his vote to Donald Trump was yet another hoax."

-----------------------

Leonardo endorses Trump? Get real! Rated by Snopes as . . .

-----------------------------------

Sorry, Queenmargo--but your meme just received a thumbs down. It is a FAKE, a HOAX, a LIE!!!

For one thing, Leonardo is an avid climate change activist. Trump doesn't come anywhere near the actor's standards!

Kate

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Stan Areted

margaux

If Biden, say, loses and lashes out, saying it was rigged, I know what my opinion would be of him. I don't have to wait until November to know myself.

After Hillary all but accused Trump of saying that if SHE won, yet SHE is the one that did exactly that, what is your opinion of Hillary?

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margaux

Same as it was before the election. Not very positive.

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Ann

"I know hypothetical questions about negative things happening to Trump are popular with some here, but they're just not my thing. So, no thanks."

Ditto for me. Especially with unlikely or, even, very unlikely hypotheticals.

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queenmargo

Kate- that is the beauty of that meme. LOL

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margaux

It's not a hypothetical. You're only unable or unwilling to answer because it's Trump. I'm sure you could answer it about any other candidate who exhibited unusual behavior because of a loss. You're never at a loss for an opinion about any Democrat or liberal with questionable behavior.

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Ann

We have yet to see Trump behavior following the so called presidential loss (that may never occur). When and if it happens, I'll be more than happy to offer an opinion - precisely as I have about Michelle's behavior at Trump's inauguration. I thought it was bordering on despicable. But, prior to that event, I had no clue or even a guess she'd behave like that.

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Ann

Despite never being a fan of Barack, I also had no idea or guess how he'd behave at Trump's inauguration. He was just fine and his behavior was nothing like that of the former first lady.

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Chi

He won't. He thrives on his supporters' adulation and won't want to risk losing that. Nothing fires up his base like immigrants and walls and mocking liberals.

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catspa_zone9sunset14

You've misspelled Barack Obama's name, Ann. And, if my husband had been treated the way Trump treated President Obama (the blatantly racist birther attacks, especially, that endangered their family), I myself would likely have been far less congenial. So, I think Michelle Obama did well, considering.

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dublinbay z6 (KS)

I must have missed Ann's comments on how "despicable" Michelle Obama's behavior was at Trump's inauguration.

After all, Michelle did not smile.

That ought to be a shocker? Although Ann evidently wasn't bothered about it at the time of the inauguration, it seems, since she didn't find out about the omission until she read Michelle's book post-inauguration.

What an minor detail to hang on to for so long.

So Michelle wasn't happy. Why is that "despicable"?

Kate

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Ann

Catspa, thanks for pointing out my spelling error. I corrected it.

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Ann

Kate, why would you think I have or would read Michelle's book? I haven't and have no plans or interest in doing so.

What omission?

I have, in fact, spoken on HT many times about my opinion of Michelle's behavior that day and I believe my first comments were on inauguration day. I thought her behavior was awful and I've discussed that for years on HT! "Ann evidently" was very bothered by Michelle's sour behavior on inauguration day.

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dublinbay z6 (KS)

Gee, I'm sorry I missed all those discussions.

You really were that upset that Michelle wasn't happy about Trump taking over the WH? Seems like a strange thing to carry on about.

She was probably feeling about the same as the millions of women who rallied against Trump the next day--around the globe! I can identify with that.

Kate

ETA: About the book, someone mentioned it and I mis-remembered it as being you. My apologies.

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Ann

Kate, fair enough. I often remember HT conversations and can't remember exactly who was posting that day.

There may very well be conservatives on HT who have read Michelle's book. I think some of the conservatives here have quite positive feelings about Michelle. I'm not one of them. I don't like her and I think her facial expressions and body language were bordering on ugly that day, most of the day. I've spoken about that many times on HT (including inauguration day, as I recall). Many liberals have been quite annoyed and angered about my comments on that topic over the last few years. But again, IMO, it's okay to agree to disagree.

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