The violence in Baltimore, in many instances, has brought out some people’s best instincts. There was no shortage of locals last night trying to maintain some semblance of stability, just as there were many residents on the streets this morning, engaged in a clean-up effort, literally sweeping up the ashes after a night of unrest.
But in the world of politics, developments in Baltimore have, in at least a few instances, also put some unfortunate instincts on display. Media Matters, for example, flagged some conservative television personalities who, during last night’s violence, were quick to blame President Obama and his administration for the riots.
The Weekly Standard’s Bill Kristol is already thinking about how the violence could be exploited by the Republican Party as a possible campaign theme. “Winning GOP message: Against anarchy & chaos, at home & abroad,” Kristol said on Twitter. He added that he’d like to see a “Cheney-Giuliani 2016” ticket. “[I]f not them, who?”
And then, of course, there’s Donald Trump.
As Baltimore erupted with rioting Monday night, presidential hopeful Donald Trump took to Twitter to air his opinions, which many users deemed racist and insensitive.“Our great African American President hasn’t exactly had a positive impact on the thugs who are so happily and openly destroying Baltimore!” he tweeted.
Wait, it gets a little worse.
This morning, someone on Twitter suggesting dumping Trump off in the middle of Baltimore “so he can show Obama how it’s done.” Trump, in response, boasted, “I would fix it fast!”
There was no indication he was kidding.
As for why anyone might give a darn what Donald Trump has to say about this or any other subject, the Republican personality is apparently moving forward with a presidential campaign. He now has four paid staffers in Iowa and a field office in New Hampshire.
At least one recent poll shows Trump roughly in the middle of the crowded GOP field.
That said, if he were able to quickly resolve the unrest in Baltimore single-handedly, Trump’s standing would presumably improve.