Well, 2016 is here and the battle for the Republican nomination for president is as heated as ever. According to CNN, Donald Trump is now dominating the Republican field, polling at 41%, with runner-up Ted Cruz lagging at 19%. Although there is still no telling who will snare the coveted Republican slot, Trump looks to have a real shot. Meanwhile, the Wall Street Journal reports “Michael Bloomberg Mulling Run for President as Independent.”
In the midst of this morass, it is no secret that liberal and conservatives alike who do not share in Trump’s views are doing their best to inform the public about the hard realities underlying many of Trump’s assertions. Among these speakers, George Soros is one of the most outspoken. As reported in the Guardian, Soros has taken aim at Trump, Cruz, and Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, who famously gave his support to a Trump presidency. Specifically, Soros stated that, “he and Cruz are doing the work of Isis.” By continuing to make incendiary claims, including the possibility of barring all Muslims from entry to the United States, Trump is risking further radicalization. This statement is not purely hypothetical. As reported by USA Today at the beginning of the year, his statement regarding Muslim immigration was recently featured in a suspected Al-Qaeda recruitment video, to show U.S. hatred for Muslims. What more would come of such speech if Trump receives the Republican nomination, or the presidency? Such are the kinds of questions appropriate to public discourse surrounding a presidential candidate.
Soros’s words may sound extreme, to link Trump and terrorists, but does he have a point? Here are a few words on Soros’s background, for those not familiar with the outspoken billionaire philanthropist. First, as put in a recent Fortune magazine article, “There aren’t many people richer than Donald Trump, but George Soros is one of them.” A Hungarian-American investor with a left-leaning tendency, Soros has spent billions of dollars working for personal liberty, including helping societies in Europe to move past oppressive Communist dictatorships. As such he is familiar with the tensions in Europe and in the Middle East, and deeply aware of the ways in which such circumstances can be overcome. When Soros speaks, as one of many educated and involved thought-leaders, the American public would do well to listen.