I am getting daily calls from my Republican friends asking me who I am supporting for the GOP nomination. I tell them I haven’t decided and it’s still early. Next there’s the inevitable question- what about Trump? My answer? Don’t write him off yet, it’s still early. Has Trump gone from a novelty candidate to a serious candidate? He certainly is the darling of the drive-by media as Rush L. likes to call them. Why not? He’s colorful, quotable, and accessible. What’s not to love, right? But can he get the nomination and can he win in November, 2016? Who knows, it’s still early.
I know this. Trump has certainly tapped into the “silent majority,” or the folks that are “mad as hell and aren’t going to take it anymore.” Clearly that 25% and growing are all over Donald Trump and his brash behavior. They love that finally someone is speaking up and out about what they think. Someone who doesn’t care if he’s politically correct and doesn’t mind telling the news media to sit down and shut up. He’s all that and more. But it’s the more that worries me. Can he sustain his momentum? Will the media tire of the novelty and start digging through his closets and if so, what will they find? Can he grasp the serious policy issues, including foreign policy, and make me believe he is capable of serving as president of these United States.
The other sixteen or fifteen if Gov Rick Perry is on his way out have to begin proving they can out-trump Trump. Thus far, no one has been able to do that. Bush appears professorial; Rubio-really love his patriotism and energy but short on experience (note, same as Barack Obama when he was elected); Dr. Ben Carson- I would want him for my surgeon, still unsure about my president; Ted Cruz- very bright but too far right for me; John Kasich- maybe-managed as Governor, served in the Congress, moderate; Carly Fiorina-smart, tough, maybe. Still early.
Time will tell I suspect. Republican nominees usually are selected by default. Whoever has the money and the organization usually win out while the others disappear. At this stage, that would be Bush. We also tend to pick nominees who have paid their dues, who’ve toiled in the fertile political fields- Bob Dole, George HW Bush, John McCain, Mitt Romney. Well wouldn’t it be something if this time we didn’t? What if the man who has never tilled one field except his own were to be sustainable until the end? Can you imagine a Trump v Hillary (or Biden or Sanders) campaign? The media certainly would have fun. Not sure about us moderate Republicans but it’s still early.