It’s about 14 months before the 2016 election and Donald Trump is leading the Republican primary race. He’s well ahead of just about everyone. He’s tracking at 30+%. The next closest candidate is Ben Carson. Everyone else is single digits. We are about to hit the 2nd Primary debate.
Let me say up front, I’m not a Trump supporter. If the election comes down to Trump vs Clinton, then I may consider moving out of the country. But regardless of my feelings about Trump, I don’t remember another candidate like him.
Trump’s candidacy has been characterized by seemingly apolitical behavior. On the positive, he doesn’t play political games. He says what he thinks. And people respond to his passion and candor.
On the negative, he’s an obnoxious jerk. I heard someone describe another politician as unfiltered. I think that same description could apply to Trump. He doesn’t pull punches, and he often says things that get him in trouble. More than one controversy has has caught fire over a comment he made during his campaign.
His competitive edge has served him well in business, but it may not in politics. It’s true that he has dominated the early political field for this election. But as he keeps insulting his rivals, he widens the divide between himself and the rest of the Republican party. I’ve heard others talking about this as well.
It’s true that Trump’s style and persona appeal to many people. That’s why he is ahead in the polls. But many of the things that his supporters like about him drive other’s away. As Trump continues to be adversarial and other Republican candidates fall out of the race, what reason do they have to throw their support to him?
30% seems like a lot when there are 10 people in the race. But if trump can’t pick up supporters as people fall out, well, right now almost 70% of Republicans don’t support him.
The more insulting and obnoxious he is, the less likely Republicans who don’t already support him will shift over if their preferred candidate drops out of the race. Trump could find himself with only 30% support next year. And that’s not enough for the nomination.