A friend and former colleague of mine, who has become a sort of homme å tout faire in Washington, declared to me the other day that he was absolutely convinced that Donald Trump would become the next American President.
This awakened in me a latent conviction that I have been keen to express but needing a catalyst: it's Wendell Willkie time!
The time is 1940 when the affable Hoosier didn't even take part in the presidential primaries but nevertheless became the party's upstart candidate and gave Franklin Roosevelt a good run for his money before succumbing to the all-knowing smile of his patrician opponent, in an era in our history when a patrician candidate was taken as a matter of course, in contrast to today when coarseness seems to have phagocyted everything.
In 1940, many Americans were longing for a change, after being bombarded on the airwaves for a decade by a Teutonic psychopath. And they long for a change today. However, for many Americans, with their built-in impatience, Barack Obama has been either too much of a change agent or too little.
But the question before us is whether someone will rein in Trump if he tries to fulfill the outrageous proclivities he expressed during the primary campaign. Would it be his daughter, Ivanka? Or his son-in-law, the New Yorker Jared Kushner? Or someone else?
This is no light matter.