The GOP still puts guns above grief. Words, too, are weapons. Trump understands their targeting and technical enhancement. (Bush’s best is the family portrait, Rubio’s is the group hug, Cruz believes in black ops.)
The 3 most important words in this cycle are wealth, race, and governance (wages, immigrants, and power (the will to kill radicals and terrorists). Trump’s variations are always on message.
Rubio whines over Cuba, yet the President’s visit (he is immensely popular in Cuba!) will inspire the Cuban people to push for reforms more than his whining or continuing the embargo.
Trump’s candidacy has made the dog whistles of white supremacy a standard of GOP flag-wrapped identity politics. Their organized denial of a Black President is framed as law and order issues, budget demands, and character and program failures.
Trumps actually generates money for the media; he brings viewers to screens! He benefits the bottom line.
Trump’s xenophobic, misogynistic world view of glad, sad, weak, and bad tell his supporters that through him, their voices are being heard!
He targets twin foes: the elite power class and working class families of color. He uses an old South dialectic: he speaks to minorities about their limits. It allows hate and the appearance of a limited equality to coexist. It is rooted in the highest appeals of action rather than policy or blame. It rejects doctrinaire conservatism that denies its bias and love of the rich. To “forget” is to mediate.