Donald Trump said John McCain wasn’t a war hero because he got captured. His polling numbers went up. He insulted Mexico and immigrants. He became more popular. He once was pro-choice, pro-single payer insurance, and pro-Clinton. It hasn’t hurt him. In a recent interview with Hugh Hewitt, he didn’t know the difference between Kurds, nerds, and birds. Two days later, NBC reported his popularity hit new highs. Twice, Trump has torn up his marriage agreements in the form of divorce, but when he signed an agreement to not run outside the Republican Party, everyone bought it.
The other 16 Republican candidates keep attacking Mr. Trump for not being a true conservative, for lacking consistent views, and for having an unidentifiable platform. And these 16 other candidates are doing this at their own peril. Every time a candidate attacks Trump, their numbers go down. Just ask Rick Perry, Lindsey Graham, Jeb Bush, and Scott Walker. They are missing the point.
Leigh Ann Crouse, of Dubuque, Iowa gets it. “It’s totally refreshing. He’s not politically correct. He has a backbone and cannot be bought.” Ken Brand, of Derry, New Hampshire gets it. “This country needs a businessman . . . to make us stop being the laughingstock of the world.” Janet Boyden, of Chester, Massachusetts gets it. “He says everything that I would like to say, but I’m afraid to say.”
Here’s why Trump works in 2015. People think we are on the wrong track. There is a deep-rooted anger and frustration out there. There is a desperation for a clear-talking, self-confident, brash, say what’s on your mind leader. Kurt Esche, of Boston, said, “This guy says what he believes. He may have started out as a joke, but he may be the real deal.”
Donald Trump transcends partisan politics. He is who he is, warts and all. He does not deny his past, his flaws, or his brashness. He has no handlers. He filters nothing; he just says it. He wears no labels and has no allegiances. He will often offend, but rarely bore. He’s like the blind discuss thrower. He may not set any records, but he’ll keep people watching.
His platform is singular: “Make America great again.” While other candidates are arguing whether America is still great, was great, or can be great, Trump is preaching to thousands every day. No one writes his sermons. No one scripts his message. The one profession that will be sidelined by a Trump Administration is the teleprompter business. He is his own man.
America is longing for a man who is the same on television as in the coffee joint. That’s called being genuine. That’s called being honest. That’s called being real. And in 2015, that’s called being Donald Trump. You have every reason to question his positions and fear an agenda he has yet to write. But America is longing for someone who says what he thinks. Can the impossible actually happen? Say it with me. President Trump. It could happen.