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Monday, Aug 3 2015

MEMO: The YOOOGE Elephant In The Room At Tonight's GOP Candidate Forum

Aug 03, 2015


TO:                Interested Parties
FROM:          Jessica Mackler, President, American Bridge 21st Century
RE:                The YOOOGE Elephant In The Room At Tonight’s GOP Candidate Forum
DATE:           August 3, 2015

Anticipation is in the air, it’s the moment we’ve all been waiting for: the Republican clown car is back on tour with the first candidate forum. Yet on opening night, the Party’s front-runner and biggest buffoon, Donald Trump, is missing. He opted out of participating, but one can afford such luxuries with momentum like his.

In lieu of The Donald, American Bridge is deploying a Tracker Trump to New Hampshire, placing targeted digital ads and changing its Twitter avatar to this classy picture:

AB-TrumpBadge (1) (1)

Republican voters are going to miss their man and Bridge will attempt to satisfy those who don’t immediately change the channel upon learning Trump isn’t there.

Jokes aside, Trump’s void will be a YOOOGE elephant in the room. He has driven and shaped the GOP primary debate so far, and will no doubt continue to do so through Monday evening’s discussion. Here’s what to watch for as the clown car makes its return:

  1. Who’ll make the latest attempt to out-Trump the Donald?

New Hampshire is Trump’s home turf. Inflammatory rhetoric and all, he’s doubling up his primary opponents in New Hampshire. Mike Huckabee did his best to channel Trump’s demagogic rhetoric last week, with outrageously offensive comments in which he compared the Iran deal to the Holocaust. Who’ll give it a go tonight, and dish out the bloodiest red meat?

  1. With Trump’s absence giving the GOP field’s under-performing candidates a chance in the hot seat. Who’ll be the first to wilt under the media spotlight?

GOP candidates are complaining that they haven’t been given enough of an opportunity to prove themselves. But odds are, the forum’s increased scrutiny will increase the chances for a candidate to self-combust. Self-deportation or an “oops” moment can change the trajectory of the campaign. Will we see one tonight?

  1. Will anyone articulate their meaningful policy differences with The Donald?

Yes, Trump’s bombastic style doesn’t agree with everyone. But it’s still unclear where his policies differ from that of the Republican platform. He’s anti-immigrant, against same-sex marriage, wants to repeal Obamacare, and opposed to a women’s right to choose; so is the GOP and almost all of their presidential candidates. They may not use the same colorful language, but at the end of the day what’s the difference?

  1. Who will be the tough guy that goes after Donald Trump tonight but refuses to on Thursday?

It’s been well-publicized that GOP candidates have been struggling to prepare for Thursday’s debate, in which they’ll have to face off against the unpredictable force of nature that is Donald Trump. Monday’s forum is their best shot to take a swing at Trump and pretend like they’re the adult in the room without inviting his wrath. But who will do that and follow up with the same on Thursday’s FOX News debate? Wild guess…no one!

Published: Aug 3, 2015

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