Buchanan the political prophet of our time: ‘My ‘ideas’ made it, but I did not’

by WorldTribune Staff, April 23, 2017

It was 25 years before Donald Trump announced his candidacy for president that Patrick Buchanan vowed to “Make America First Again”.

Declaring his candidacy for the presidency at a 1991 rally in Concord, New Hampshire, Buchanan railed against “globalist” President George H. W. Bush and the “bureaucrats in Brussels” who were pursuing a “European superstate” that trampled on national identity.

Patrick Buchanan and the late President Richard Nixon.

“We must not trade in our sovereignty for a cushioned seat at the head table of anybody’s new world order,” Buchanan said at the rally.

In retrospect, little has changed in Washington’s political-media arena since the days, Buchanan was in the ring battling the bitter enemies of the late President Richard Nixon, particularly among his colleagues in the press corps.

Buchanan “was the pioneer of the vision that Trump ran on and won on,” Greg Mueller, who served as Buchanan’s communications director on the 1992 and 1996 campaigns, told Politico Magazine.

The still-combative former aide to President Richard Nixon encourages Trump to continue to fight the media, another move that Buchanan pioneered, having wrote the speech in which then-Vice President Spiro Agnew blasted the media as “a small and unelected elite” who possess a “profound influence over public opinion” without any checks on their “vast power.”

“What we did was call into question their motives and their veracity,” Buchanan told Politico. “We said they are vessels flying flags of neutrality while carrying contraband. And that’s a message that is still well received today, because people know it’s true.”

During three consecutive runs for the presidency Buchanan focused on a “new nationalism” for “forgotten Americans” left behind by bad trade deals, open-border immigration policies and foreign interventions.

After winning the New Hampshire primary in 1996, Buchanan declared: “We’re going to recapture the lost sovereignty of our country … and we’re going to bring it home!”

Buchanan would go on to win just one of the remaining contests as Bob Dole coasted to the nomination, but his message was delivered and received.

“The question is, what is it that holds us together?” Buchanan asked. “The neocons say we’re an ideological people bound together by what Lincoln said at Gettysburg and what Jefferson wrote in the Declaration of Independence, and that’s what makes us one nation. But my tradition of conservatism says it’s not; it’s the idea of culture and faith and belief and history and heroes and holidays.

Buchanan continued: “Can you have a nation that consists of all the people in the world — and be one people?”

Surprised but elated by the 2016 election results, Buchanan said that Trump’s victory may be “the last chance for these ideas.”

“The ideas made it,” Buchanan added. “But I didn’t.”