Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Perpetual buffoonery

When an incident occurs between two people, there's typically three sides to the story. Version A, Version B and the actual Version (usually somewhere between A & B).

Earlier this month at a campaign stop in Florida, GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump was approached by then Breitbart reporter Michelle Fields. Upon asking Trump a couple of questions, Fields was allegedly grabbed by Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski in an attempt to shut down her inquiries. The day after that incident I saw a Tweet from Fields' boyfriend alleging Lewandowski was even more physical than that.

On the other end of the spectrum, the Trump campaigned flatly denied any incident occurred.

It appears that we now know the "in-between" version.

Donald Trump's presidential campaign manager was arrested and charged with misdemeanor battery in Florida on Tuesday, the latest chapter in a raucous U.S. race marked by threats, insults and physical confrontations.

Police in Jupiter, Florida, charged Corey Lewandowski, 42, with intentionally grabbing and bruising the arm of Michelle Fields, then a reporter for the conservative news outlet Breitbart, when she tried to question Trump at a campaign event on March 8.

Republican front-runner Trump repeatedly defended Lewandowski, saying he was innocent and would fight the charges while continuing as campaign manager. Lewandowski was a good man who was "very, very seriously maligned, and I think it's very unfair," he said.

"I told him I think he should never settle this case. He should go all the way," Trump told reporters on his plane after he landed in Wisconsin for a campaign trip. "I just can't stand by and watch a man's life be destroyed."

Police released a video of the incident showing Fields walking alongside Trump and trying to question him. Lewandowski is seen grabbing her arm and pulling her backward. Previous videos of the incident had been obscured by people in the crowd.

At the time, Lewandowski called Fields "delusional" and said he never touched her.

Not only did Lewandowski call Fields' credibility into question, he went even further by attempting to publicly smear her good name.

If this were a normal presidential election cycle and Trump wasn't such a buffoon, a typical response would be along the lines of "I maintain the belief that my campaign manager is innocent of all charges but will not comment further until the legal process has run its course."

Ah, but you know as well as I that Trump isn't capable of handling much of anything in a dignified manner.

While I am fervently anti-Trump, I have to admit that footage of Lewandowski grabbing Fields looks rather benign and certainly didn't look to be an attempt to "pull her to the ground."

However, this incident got blown completely out of proportion because:

a) The Trump camp not only refused to apologize but they adamantly denied any impropriety.

b) Fields' employer Breitbart News, who is shamelessly in the bag for Trump, did not support her in this incident. She resigned shortly thereafter.

What's scary is about a week or two after the Fields incident, Lewandowski was caught on video grabbing a protester at a Tucson, AZ rally.

Since Lewandowski will not go to jail for misdemeanor battery, he will be back with the Trump campaign in due time. It's rather difficult for Trump's team to continue to decry the incidents of violence that take place at their rallies if they're willing to keep a confirmed thug on their payroll. But, once again, this is an election cycle where the only conventional wisdom is anything unconventional.


1 comment:

Bike Bubba said...

My take on this one is that if indeed a police officer left bruises, and indeed Ms. Fields seems to have been moved about two yards out of the path she was taking, battery charges are entirely appropriate. What's going on here is that Mr. Lewandowski is using physical presence to intimidate people--he's not doing it so much that everybody's "ew" trigger is switched, but it's there nonetheless.