If I ever went to a Bruce Springsteen concert and he did not play "Born To Run," I would feel slighted.
Likewise, if I paid to see a Jimmy Buffett show that did not include "Margaritaville," I would come away feeling cheated.
Which is probably what explains the "President's" marathon ramble at the Conservative Political Action Conference last weekend. The fans, they come out for the hits, and Big Orange did not disappoint.
He denounced Democrats as the party of "the socialist nightmare," re-litigated his crowd sizes back to the inauguration and took on "sick," ''lunatic" and "dirty" foes at every turn. The MAGA crowd was tempted to use a fork, but they wanted to get every drop. It was a greatest hits show, after all. Like when those artists who have extensive back catalogs simply throw away the set list, he gave those conservatives exactly what they wanted to hear for more than two hours, openly acknowledging that he had "gone off script." But that, he insisted, was what got him elected. Like when he reached back to old criticisms of his ex-attorney general, mocking Jeff Sessions' Southern accent and calling him "weak and ineffective." Never mind that he was the one who hired Sessions in the first place. And there was this nugget: "America will never be a socialist country," he said. "Socialism is not about the environment, it's not about justice, it's not about virtue." He said it's about "power for the ruling class."
No really, really right. So right in fact that attendees were unable to take a quick jog across the hallway to use the bathrooms because they were located a few feet from the left. Instead, they turned to the right and went around the building in order to take care of their business.
Okay. I made that last part up, but they were all more than willing to sit still for bits like this: "I think the New Green Deal or whatever the hell they call it — the Green New Deal — I encourage it. I think it's really something that they should promote. They should work hard on it. ... No planes, no energy. When the wind stops blowing that's the end of your electric. Let's hurry up. Darling, is the wind blowing today? I'd like to watch television, darling."
On the Russia Probe: "This phony thing looks like it's dying so they don't have anything with Russia there, no collusion. So now they go in and morph into 'Let's inspect every deal he's ever done. We're going to go into his finances. We're going to check his deals. We're going to check' — these people are sick."
He also took another crack at explaining his remarks that he didn't believe Kim Jong Un knew about or would have allowed the death of Otto Warmbier, the American college student who was held prisoner in North Korea, then sent home in a vegetative state. His remarks were widely criticized and led the Warmbier family to say they held Kim and his regime responsible for their son's death. So he tried this one on the crowd: "I'm in such a horrible position because in one way I have to negotiate. In the other way, I love Mr. and Mrs. Warmbier and I love Otto. And it's a very, very delicate balance."
Balance? That's not why folks show up to a CPAC show. They show up for the hits, no matter how badly they miss.