When you shake hands with The Donald….

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October 9, 2016 9:54 AM

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Let’s face it – this wasn’t a surprise.

Long before the recordings surfaced of Donald Trump speaking of women in crude, offensive and misogynistic terms, the Republican presidential candidate had made it abundantly clear who and what he was.

Certainly, his hatred of women had been on full display.

Megyn Kelly of Fox News, Rosie O’Donnell, Alicia Machado, Carly Fiorina and, yes, Hillary Clinton all can testify to Trump’s demeaning dismissals of women as beings who aren’t quite fully human. When they stand up to him and assert their right to have, you know, thoughts of their own as human beings do, Trump always responded by trying to reduce them to pieces of meat.

Fat pigs. Miss Piggy. That face. Blood coming out of her eyes. Weak.

The Trump who spoke in the 2005 recording and who told Howard Stern it was okay to describe his daughter as “a piece of ***” was just the unfiltered and undiluted bigot, not the somewhat decaffeinated version he likes to put on public display.

Every thinking woman – conservative or liberal, Republican or Democrat – is outraged by Trump’s comments. Women have a right to be offended to the core of their beings.

But they don’t have a monopoly on anger.

The brutal fact is that Donald Trump has a long and unremitting history of demeaning and dismissing other people – Mexicans, Muslims, African-Americans, anyone who has the temerity to disagree with him – who see themselves as something other than vehicles for his ambitions or pleasures.

He lives in his own world.

The rest of us are just props and scenery in that make-believe land.

Many Republicans who stood by, mute, deaf and blind, while Trump insulted and degraded other human beings – sometimes in a retail fashion, just as often wholesale – now say they have had enough and can stand by him no longer. A few even are calling for Trump to withdraw from the race.

Their focus no longer is on the presidency. They know the White House is lost.

But Republicans want to try to hold onto the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives and a number of hotly contested governors’ races – including Indiana’s. Having Trump atop the ticket oozing toxicity won’t help them do that.

Even if, by some miracle, they are able to throw Trump overboard, tossing him likely won’t help the GOP much.

Republicans bought a ticket on the Trump Titanic and now they have little choice but to ride the ship all the way down.

They have no one to blame but themselves. There is a cost to willful blindness.

And they are paying it.

He didn’t hide who or what he is.

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