When Bryon York writes about Trump blowing up the GOP orthodoxy, he’s not writing for Trump followers or the millions who are interested in and may vote for Trump. He’s interpreting the substance of Trump’s still strong showings for a hostile Republican establishment audience. And he’s doing it with wonky academic references – like Broockman and Ahler’s Stanford study – that show that Trump has a so-called uncanny instinct for the issues. So is Donald an evil genius? Or does he actually mean what he says and aims to do something about the problems he feels are plaguing America? And does his vantage point as a media-savvy personality and a long-time businessman and developer help him hit the target?

Maybe Trump is just stubborn and does mean what he says. On immigration and on taxes, for example, he confronts the GOP orthodoxy and lays it to waste. At least for his audiences who love it. And they love it because they’ve felt the same way as Trump for a long time. And on taxes, he is sure to infuriate Wall street and anyone who’s looking for tax relief as a way to unlock innovation and investment. But we’re not in the late 70’s and even if Harry Reid is as unloved as Ted Kennedy – at least by Republicans – the desperate need for tax relief, as evidenced back then by proposition 13, is not bubbling under the surface, ready to erupt. In other words, higher taxes on the wealthy – and there are various ways to define wealthy – seems to play well with a majority of Americans. Does it play well with a majority of GOP voters? Or put another way, would a policy proposal to raise taxes on wealthier Americans doom Trump’s nomination? York quotes a CNN poll that shows GOP voter confidence in Trumps economic stewardship way ahead of others, like Jeb Bush.

So is York Trump’s Will? As in George Will – no fan of the Donald needless to say – and his role in interpreting Reagan’s bold changes for a wide television audience thirty odd years ago. Will York convince the GOP establishment to take Trump seriously? It’s hardly the case that Byron was cheering for Trump at his announcement, but he seems to have become convinced that it’s what Trump says that is just as important as who he is. Both Trump’s tone and his content resonate with voters. Now all Donald needs is for Byron York to convince the GOP establishment to lay down their heavy artillery and start taking him seriously. Whether York even wants to accomplish that is doubtful, but many in the GOP top ranks seem to have been trying to will away Trump from the campaign stage, like a grumpy old-fashioned investor grimly holding onto his naked short on a tech stock in 1995. That investment policy, of course, was a great way to lose everything. In 1995 at least. It worked marvelously, however, some 5 years later. Willing away the Donald may be a losing trade, at least for the next year or so.

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