Like a junkie huffing his own glue, Donald Trump throws in the affirmative action card to pump up the GOP base even more. This one really stretches credulity: the man who edited the Harvard Law Review was not qualified to get into Columbia or Harvard. And then a totally fabricated notion that the president's long-form birth certificate is missing.
We can and should dismiss this man as a clown. But what's so riveting is that he is testing just how powerful a clown can be when pressing every populist, racist button the GOP has deployed for years – and doing it with a crudeness that Karl Rove would never quite deploy.
My fear is the following: that by merely trumpeting these claims and stirring these fears, Trump gets more and more media platforms to promote them. And they slowly penetrate the culture, delegitimizing the president even more deeply among the Fox News base. And we might as well concede it: these are racist smears, based on fear of the cultural "other". And the reason why Trump isn't Al Sharpton, pace Charles Krauthammer, is that he's white, and therefore commands much more immediate attention from the ageing, white GOP base than Sharpton ever could with the Democrats.
I don't think Trump will last very long. I do think he makes other shameless candidates more acceptable. Do you know what I am saying?