The economy trumps Trump

Obama has deflected the birthers. The real danger for the president now is the GOP's political ploy to dead-end the economy

Robert Shrum

So Donald Trump, after tending to his combover, emerged from his helicopter in New Hampshire to pronounce that he was "proud" and "honored" to "have been able to get" the president to release his birth certificate. Trump, of course, is always proud of himself; he’s rolling both in money and arrogance. As for the honored part, he's already made sure of that. His name adorns — or defaces — hotels, golf courses, and condos across the nation. The one place we can be sure it will never be is where he aspires to inscribe it — on the door of the Oval Office.

Trump is in Palinesque territory with the electorate as a whole. While he's running at or near the front of the GOP field, 64 percent of Americans in a USA Today/Gallup poll say they just wouldn't vote for The Donald, period. Despite his dollars, this makes sense: Why would we entrust the future of the economy to someone whose branded properties have a history of serial corporate bankruptcy?

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Robert Shrum has been a senior adviser to the Gore 2000 presidential campaign, the campaign of Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak, and the British Labour Party. In addition to being the chief strategist for the 2004 Kerry-Edwards campaign, Shrum has advised thirty winning U.S. Senate campaigns; eight winning campaigns for governor; mayors of New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, and other major cities; and the Democratic Leader of the U.S. House of Representatives. Shrum's writing has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The New Republic, Slate, and other publications. The author of No Excuses: Concessions of a Serial Campaigner (Simon and Schuster), he is currently a Senior Fellow at New York University's Wagner School of Public Service.