Those of us out here beyond the Beltway who want an issues-centric campaign for the presidency are likely to be disappointed greatly in what we get from the major-party nominees.
Why? Because the Republican incumbent, Donald John Trump, appears intent on personalizing the fight. He will level a heavy barrage of innuendo, laced with insults at whomever the Democrats nominate to oppose him.
Bet on it. This is the type of campaign that lines up just the way the president wants it.
As for the Democratic Party nominee, he or she had better be prepared for what is likely to come.
To be candid, I am weary of the insults that Trump hurls with abandon. I want to know what he intends to do about the serious crises facing this nation and the planet: climate change, for one. Trump says climate change is a hoax, although he did recently make a sort of endorsement about how important the environment is to him. It sounded more like a platitude than any sort of serious assessment.
I will not hold breath in anticipation of any sort of serious discussion by Trump and, by extension, by the Democratic nominee. If the Democrat talks about serious matters, the public is likely to tune him or her out.
So that produces a campaign of personal vitriol.
Yes, it will be a virtual repeat of what we got in 2016.
The Democrats nominated an eminently qualified public servant in Hillary Rodham Clinton. She blew it apart at the end by ignoring key Rust Belt states that Trump’s campaign adroitly picked off, enabling him to win a slim Electoral College majority.
Throughout the 2016 campaign, Trump kept up the drumbeat of innuendo against Clinton, suggesting corruption that no one has been able to prove against her.
Take this to the bank: The president will do the same thing against whomever he faces as he seeks re-election. The Democrats’ challenge is to be ready to slug it out.
The losers in this bloodbath will be, well … you and me.
So very sad.