On Wednesday, a 10-foot python was spotted eating a beaver on the banks of a river in Westbrook, and on Wednesday Donald Trump was spotted in Bangor preying on old-timers.

Donald Trump and “Wessie the Presumpscot Python” are like two peas in a pod, really, or better yet, two slippery snakes in the grass feeding on unsuspecting mammals that are long in the tooth. Both are from Florida, and both can take your breath away.

Both are all over the news and in our worst nightmares, and nobody seems to even give a dam about the beaver. Imagine this busy little guy – let’s call him Norman – minding his own business building his family lodge, whistling and cutting and slapping his tail around while keeping a careful eye out for coyotes and bears when out of nowhere, a 10-foot python swallows him whole.

A python in a Maine river? My God, poor little Norm didn’t have a chance – and he probably had a family. It’s so unfair.

The poor Normans in Bangor got squeezed and swallowed whole by a big snake from Florida, too. Trump says he’s going to prevent Muslims from entering our country and re-open our mills and put Norman back to work. But the fancy furniture Trump himself sells isn’t manufactured in America using trees felled in Aroostook County; it’s made in Turkey, a country, by the way, that’s governed by Muslims.

Trump says he’s going to build a wall to keep out Mexicans. But the guy has made millions employing undocumented workers to build his hotel in Washington, D.C., and has used hundreds of foreign guest workers to build his resorts in Florida.

Trump says he’s going to put the screws to China for us and clamp down on currency manipulation. But much of Trump’s clothing line is made in China and Bangladesh, and he celebrated the Brexit vote because the fall of the British pound would increase his profits.

Trump has profited handsomely from outsourcing, but in this age of globalization and income inequality, trade policy is a political jungle, so suddenly candidate Trump is anti-trade and a fierce opponent of the Trans Pacific Partnership agreement.

Obviously Trump is making a play for the fringe Bernie Sanders contingent who are apoplectic about trade deals and happen to be white non-college educated folks out of a job and down on their luck. Trump came to Maine peddling the economics of nostalgia and other forbidden fruit.

The TPP involves the United States, Japan, Malaysia, Vietnam, Singapore, Brunei, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Mexico, Chile and Peru and essentially would reduce or eliminate 18,000 tariffs and open trade barriers for a collective population of about 800 million people. Critics says it was negotiated in secret and weakens sovereignty. Supporters hail it as a remarkable achievement that will unleash economic growth and open vast new markets and opportunity while protecting the environment and workers.

The TPP was signed in February 2016 and now must be ratified – each country with its own process. In the U.S., that means implementing legislation that has to pass through the House and Senate.

President Obama is for it, as are most Republicans in Congress. Hillary Clinton is against the TPP as written, as is Bernie Sanders, but there’s a rift between the two campaigns about language in the Democratic platform. The Sanders camp wants the platform to outright reject the TPP, while the Clinton people are arguing for a measure that would say “there are a diversity of views in the party” on the TPP and reaffirm that any trade deal “must protect workers and the environment.”

To most people on the sidelines straddling the center, the internal battle about the TPP in the Democratic party platform is a white elephant. Its cost is out of proportion to its usefulness. Show me a member of Congress who refers to the platform before voting on a bill and I’ll charm you another snake, but for die-hard anti-trade types, it’s a litmus test.

The Bernie anti-trade zealots are suspicious of Clinton’s moderate record of supporting some but not all trade deals. As a senator she voted against the Central America Free Trade Agreement, for example, but is loosely tethered to the North American Free Trade Agreement because of Bill Clinton. As secretary of state before the TPP terms were finalized, Clinton voiced support of the concept and aspirations of the deal but is now opposed to the finished product, saying it doesn’t go far enough to protect American interests.

This election will be a realignment of people. The teams will trade players. Trump will pick up the extremes on the right and the left, while Clinton will get the people in the middle. From now until November it’s not about whether you are a Democrat or a Republican. It’s whether you want to move forward or fall back. It’s whether you get eaten whole or live to build a better dam.

Cynthia Dill is a civil rights lawyer and former state senator. She can be contacted at:

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Twitter: dillesquire