The idea of business tycoon Donald Trump becoming the Republican party’s candidate for the U.S. Presidency has resulted in the Grand Old Party being at war with itself.
Politics is a blood sport, and for sure the Republican party is bleeding.
The party’s elders had presumed that the billionaire celebrity would have burnt himself out. That presumption has now proven to be false.
Former Massachusetts governor and 2012 presidential candidate Mitt Romney, is the most prominent GOP elder to come out with the goal of derailing Trump’s aspirations. According to the 68-year-old Romney, the real estate magnate is a fraud and a phony, among other things.
Watch Romney try to end Trump’s bid for the Republican presidential nomination in the PBS NewsHour video below:
But no matter what Romney says, Trump is dominating the race and media coverage as well.
“[Trump] is a new kind of Republican, one who flaunts his apostasies on conservative principles, who slings vulgar and divisive language, and who has an ostentatious disregard for the system,” wrote Karen Tumulty in a piece for The Washington Post.
Trump has tapped into the anger of a declining America which he promises to make great again. His support is rock solid, especially among those folk who feel ignored by America’s new and emerging progressive culture.
Thursday’s debate saw the 69-year-old Trump being attacked by two of his fellow candidates — Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz — who have managed to stay afloat in the wake of the Trump juggernaut. The former reality TV star came under fire during the debate, especially about his failed Trump University and related class action legal cases against him from former students.
Whether this has dinted Trump’s popularity remains to be seen. Nationally, Trump has the backing of 41 percent of Republican voters while Cruz has 19 percent and Rubio has 16 percent, says Reuters/Ipsos polling data.
Rubio, Cruz and John Kasich have stated they would support Trump if he ends up being the GOP nominee.
For Trump’s right of reply to Romney’s comments see this Fox News video done after Thursday’s rowdy GOP debate in Detroit:
While most of the “dump-Trump” Republicans probably believe it’s too late to stop the New York billionaire from winning more primaries, they see hope in July’s Republican National Convention in Cleveland. Here they hope to deny Trump a majority of delegates and instead choose a compromise candidate.
But if they do they will be denying the will of a large chunk of Republican voters which will in itself bring on consequences.
“The D.C. power brokers will drop someone in who is exactly to the liking of the establishment. If that will happen we will have a manifold revolt in this country,” Cruz said at the Conservative Political Action Conference outside Washington according to Reuters.
“You want to beat Donald Trump, you beat Donald Trump with the voters,” said the Texas senator.
Meanwhile the Democrats must be lapping up the public infighting, hoping that a split Republican party results in a Clinton presidency.