Bill Clinton has a lot of people to thank for his success and at the top of his list is Ross Perot. Had not the egomaniacal billionaire harbored an irrational malice towards George H. W. Bush, there would never have been a first Clinton administration, nor a second, nor a possible third. As with his own mother, Bill Clinton cannot truly repay Ross Perot for all the goodness he has bestowed upon him.
There are a lot of parallels with Ross Perot and Donald Trump. They are two wealthy, confident, blustering, non-career politicians who break the usual candidate molds. Both men have a talent for turning a phrase. Ironically or otherwise it is our relationship with Mexico that best defines their political narratives. Perot was an outspoken critic of North America Free Trade Agreement. Trump is an outspoken critic of illegal immigration.
Perot was third party from the onset. Trump showed loyalty to the GOP and jumped into their game. Now we are being told that the big tent is not as big as we thought it was. There is a rumored move to have The Donald banned from the debates despite his lead in the polls. That would be a big mistake. Do you want anyone to watch your debates? If so, include Trump.
There is also the distinct possibility that if Trump is banned from the debates he will run his own debate on another network that will outdraw the GOP debate. This guy is no sissy. He will push back. Better to have him as a friend than an enemy.
There is a simple message here: Fight, dammit, fight! If Huckabee had shown this kind of fight in 2008, he would have been his party's nominee. Had Rick Perry, or even Rick Santorum, taken the same "tell it like it is" approach in 2012, Mitt Romney would have been second on the ticket.
Whether you want to acknowledge it or not, the GOP needs Donald Trump more than Donald Trump needs the GOP.