As of today’s date, ahead of the second televised debate among contenders for the Republican nomination for President of the United States, opulent New York real estate mogul Donald Trump stands head and shoulders above his closest rival, Dr. Ben Carson, according to most national polls that have most recently been taken. And, all the remaining 14 candidates are seriously behind the good doctor in their polling percentages. Allowing for how early all of this flip prancing is taking place (which is to say, it could change dramatically on short notice), it is prudent to consider what Trump’s candidacy portends for the presidential campaign in chief that will begin in earnest in early 2016 with the state primaries.
Trump is certainly not a new face on the national stage, having set hard-to-exceed pole marks for flamboyance, brashness, profligacy, and marital drama for a great many years. A textbook case of advanced narcissism (especially the element of grandiosity), he has once again exhibited his great gifts of showmanship and a sure talent for Svengali-like enticement. In just a few short months, he has adroitly and deftly tapped into the deep, chronic anger and frustration of the grassroots/Liberty Movement/Tea Party wing of the Republican Party, throwing them huge helpings of red meat on the hot button issues of illegal immigration, the Iran nuclear deal, and Obamacare. At the same time, he has created a quiet consternation in the establishment wing of the GOP, due in equal parts to his uncontrolled outré rhetoric, populist positions, and virtual insularity from the crucial need on the part of all other candidates to raise big campaign funding from lots of other people.