Not since the old Reese's peanut butter cup commercials in which chocolate is accidentally dipped in peanut butter has there been such fortuitous timing. Why not Jeff Lord for White House communications director?
Lord has White House experience, having served as political director under President Reagan. That was the last unambiguously successful Republican administration and arguably the most accomplished of either party in decades.
Reagan was the Great Communicator. Lord remembers when Pat Buchanan and other conservatives came into the White House to "let Reagan be Reagan." Who else would be better equipped to let Trump be Trump?
That was thirty years ago. Now Lord is tanned, rested, and ready for a return.
Past spokesmen for Trump have faced two major problems. Some, like long-suffering former press secretary Sean Spicer, seemed uncomfortable defending some of the president's more fanciful claims. Many have complained about being undercut by Trump's own tweets after executing a carefully planned communications strategy designed to keep the president out of trouble.
Have you ever seen Lord seem the least bit flustered when it comes to defending the president in public? No matter how tough the case or how many liberals and Never Trump Republicans are trying to shout him down, Lord would plunge forward.
CNN's Anderson Cooper once said that Lord would defend the president if he defecated on his desk. (Cooper would not have said anything approaching that level of vulgarity to colleagues who were worshipful of former President Obama.) Ever a happy warrior, Lord simply laughed.
While Lord has become famous for strained historical analogies — my personal favorite is his suggestion that Trump is the Martin Luther King, Jr. of the healthcare debate — is there any question that he was the most learned and politically experienced pro-Trump pundit CNN retained? If you turned off the sound, it often looked like Kayleigh McEnany, now a Republican National Committee spokeswoman, was being scolded for failing to clean her room.
Lord is far more steeped in the conservative movement than most Trump surrogates. The pretext for his removal from CNN notwithstanding, he is more of a Jack Kemp Republican than denizen of the alt-right.
About that pretext: Does anyone really believe Lord was sincerely giving a Nazi salute? The internet would be much better if we repealed Godwin's law and replaced it with sane, civil discourse. But Lord was obviously being sarcastic. Must we be forced to pretend otherwise?
A Pennsylvania resident, Lord knows the Rust Belt, the crucial region for Trump's success. He was one of the first locals during the campaign to tell me how likely Trump was to win the state's primary, compete for its unbound delegates to the Republican National Convention, and even carry its electoral votes in November.
Trump was an admirer of Lord before entering politics. I saw the future president tell the 2013 American Spectator dinner "he's a great writer" and a "great guy." White House chief strategist Steve Bannon reportedly called to give Lord, who has written for Breitbart, a pep talk.
No, Lord wouldn't enhance Trump's credibility with his many critics. But at this point, who would? They've tried political professionals who don't get Trump. They've tried a smooth but erratic amateur in Anthony Scaramucci. David Gergen isn't walking through that door.
Despite new White House chief of staff John Kelly's best efforts, the ship has likely sailed on the prospects for Trump respectability. Might as well unleash a true believer with communications skills and political knowledge to do the job.
There is a serious reason Lord would be unlikely to do the job: He takes care of his elderly mother in Pennsylvania, and it would be difficult to relocate. Even traveling to the CNN studios in D.C., to be harrangued by Van Jones, was a hardship.
But the president could do certainly worse than having one of his most ardent defenders embedded in his press shop. And he probably will.