Donald Trump, in defending his record as a conservative, told Sean Hannity, “[Y]ou mentioned the word conservative. I like to say I’m a conservative with common sense or I’m a common sense conservative. And it’s a term nobody’s ever heard of because I just came up with it about two days ago because some of these things that these people come up with are crazy.”
Nobody ever heard of it, except maybe Chris Christie who described himself that way in 2014.
Or the folks running this website, The Commonsense Conservative, which appears to have been started by a guy who is now on Ben Carson’s social media team.
Or this group of bloggers that launched another website, The Common Sense Conservative, right before the 2008 elections.
There is even a Wikipedia page about the use of the related “Common Sense Revolution” to describe fiscal conservatives who want to lower taxes abroad.
Then there is John Kasich describing himself as a “common sense conservative” in the days before the South Carolina vote.
Look, it’s minutia I know, and to the extent anyone notices Trump thinks he made up a phrase in common use among conservative politicians, it only serves to underscore his central truthful narrative: he’s been outside politics, including the conservative movement.
I don’t think we have a clue what kind of president Trump will be. For some people, that’s a problem. For others, it is a recommendation.
Maggie Gallagher is a senior fellow at the American Principles Project.