Win, lose or draw, Donald Trump's campaign for the presidency leaves in its wake a trail of zombie organizations, organizations that maintain the semblance of life but have been drained of spirit.
Chief among them is the Republican Party. In what alternative universe do we find the Republican Party agreeing that the president of Russia is a superior leader to the president of the United States?
Trump praises Putin on an almost daily basis, and Republican leadership, on an almost daily, basis trots out to agree. Now, you and I might have disagreed with the traditional Republican disparagement of Russia and its leaders but it certainly characterized the party over the years.
Trump has also displayed the zombie spirit of the nation's Evangelical right wing.
Now, the term Evangelical covers a vast number of people whose beliefs on everything except the Bible and the saving role of Jesus Christ varies widely. I'm talking here of the television stars, the James Dobsons and Franklin Grahams and the mega-church pastors who live rock star lives.
They're not only endorsing Trump, they are telling the faithful that God has placed him on the ticket to bring the nation back to God. If they were saying Trump is God's punishment for our sins, that would be one thing. They're not saying that.
My favorite example, however, is Trump's recent speech to the Values Voters Summit, where he explained to them that, should he become president, he will remove barriers to their preaching politics from the pulpit. He said he thinks it would be “the only way I will get to heaven.”
Aside from the fact that I haven't noticed any reluctance of these preachers to share their political views, no one seemed to have noticed Trump's heresy.
Evangelical teaching is that the “only way” one gets to heaven is by repenting and accepting Jesus Christ as Lord and savior. If you let go of that concept, you might be many good things, but you are not an Evangelical and you're not going to heaven. So I thought someone might point that out since presumably millions, or at least thousands of people may have seen his speech on television and been misled.
Finally, Trump has displayed the zombie nature of the political press.
Trump just snows the press. He comes up with a new outrage every few hours and the new outrage just lets the old outrage fade into obscurity. Now he has an army of surrogates who go on news shows and tell lies. When hosts try to stop them -- even by showing clips of Trump saying something the surrogates insist he never said -- they keep right on with the lies.
I'm not one of those people who think Trump can't win. I live in Wisconsin, a state that has elected Scott Walker three times. I am not an optimist.
But win, lose or draw Trump has already undermined some of America's most stalwart institutions.