Although it helps to be wealthy when you are running of President of the United States wealth neither guarantees success (just ask Mitt Romney) nor civil behavior. Which brings us to Donald Trump.
I appreciate what Trump has done. He has an amazing record of success in the business world but in the political arena he has been less than amazing. I give “The Donald” credit for raising the debate on some very important issues.
It was not until Trump blasted the criminal element among Mexican aliens that other candidates began to talk about the problem. He was condemned for his comments but less than two weeks later, a five time deported Mexican national shot and killed an innocent young women in the “sanctuary” city of San Francisco. Suddenly, it became a national issue. Too late, leading politicians have discovered Mexico has pulled a Mariel boat lift on us and dumped criminals in our country. Castro allowed 125,000 Cubans to leave his country, many of them from jails or mental institutions.
This kind of talk has propelled Trump to the top of a crowded field of G.O.P. candidates. According to a new ABC News/Washington Post national poll, Trump has the support of 24 percent of registered Republicans and Republican-leaning independents — 11 points higher than Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (13 percent) and 12 points ahead of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.
However, the bulk of the survey was conducted before Trump’s controversial comments about Arizona Sen. John McCain.
“He’s not a war hero,” Trump said at a GOP summit in Ames, Iowa. “He was a war hero because he was captured. I like people who weren’t captured.”
That was very simply a stupid comment. John McCain was a young Navy pilot who had the misfortune of getting shot down over enemy territory in 1967. He endured torture at the hands of the North Vietnamese for six years. He adhered to the highest principles of an American fighting man and left his captivity physically scarred but spiritually unbroken. That is what makes John McCain a hero. It is a pity Mr. Trump did not comprehend that before he made his remarks.
Those off-hand remarks may cost Trump. Trump was the choice of 28 percent of respondents. But on Sunday, less than 10 percent of respondents said they would support him, a signal Trump’s comments about McCain may cause his lead to evaporate. He has since rebounded.
The Des Moines Register, Iowa’s largest circulation newspaper, called on Trump to bow out of the race or, as the paper put it, “pull the plug on his bloviating side show.”
I do not believe many voters find Trump more than a curiosity. He offers words but no solutions to some very grave problems. It is time to look for serious candidates and Donald Trump is not one of them.