“It’s very hard to find examples of similar politicians who could rise so high and sweep other candidates while getting entangled in racist scandals, accusing competitors of having parents involved in the assassination of John Kennedy, and criticising and mocking women, who are such an important part of the electorate,” said Linas Kojala, an analyst at the Eastern European Study Centre.
“There are several reasons for this. First, Trump was underestimated. It seemed that at some point he would have to stop, that he had boundaries he wouldn’t cross. Second, the party elite we had discussed had to begin stopping the Trump train, but they never appeared to be able to unite and offer an alternative,” said Kojala.
“Third is that the American people are disappointed by the political elites, the government, and the processes that are happening in Washington. Trump’s voters are people who believe America needs a leader who’s not a politician, a person who can speak directly. A person who can implement the decisions that the old politicians dared not make. It’s a whole palette of reasons, none of which were decisive, but all of which created the result that we have now,” he continued.
Kojala said the US election should be of particular interest to Lithuanians. “We will have a candidate who was the U.S. Secretary of State, personally visited Lithuania twice, has worked with leaders in our region, and who perfectly understands our problems and the importance of NATO. She talks about how important NATO is for the US when other candidates simply talk about the leeching of American money for other states’ benefit. Clinton is a serious politician whose stature reflects what many countries around the world and their leaders want to see in the post of the president of the United States,” he said.
“In the mean time, Trump is a candidate who, I think, we can best describe with his own thesis – that the U.S’ foreign policy should be unpredictable. In current conditions, saying that the actions of the U.S. President should be unpredictable and that discussions about NATO being outdated must become a part of their political work is very dangerous for Lithuania,” Kojala explained.