Donald Trump is running for president and many people throw their hands up in horror. The billionaire real estate tycoon is too brash, in addition to being shrill and too crude. But those are precisely his strengths. Those, plus his XXL net worth. With 15 potential candidates to date, the field of Republicans vying for the presidency has become a bit confusing. Many will drop out after the first primaries have been held but it's still too early to predict who they might be. And a few will still be getting a lot of attention a year from now.
As of today Bush, Walker and Rubio have the best chances of winning, but how the primaries play out, and how the political landscape looks after that, won't be determined solely by them. That's when the second tier candidates will emerge and begin to make an impression on the primaries. If they're loud, shrill and can be counted on to make a few outrageous headlines, they'll be noticed.
Donald “Not a Chance” Trump
If the reporting about his entry into the race is to be believed, one candidate, New York real estate mogul and TV personality Donald Trump, has the worst chances of any of them. The surveys think the same and give him about a 4 percent chance of success. But does that make him a non-entity? A political clown who will make the Republican circus complete? No.
It's entirely possible that his ego won't withstand the burdens of insufficient notoriety and he will silently disappear. But it's also possible that he will be able to leave his mark on the Republican debate.
Donald “Washington is Broken” Trump
Trump bears a different message from the other candidates, insofar as anyone can tell what it is. It's a combination of babbling bar talk, boastful wealth and simplistic solutions at the expense of others.
He wants to build a wall around Mexico — and nobody builds walls as good as his. America must be victorious again against China, Japan, Mexico. To achieve that, Washington needs strong leadership and not the current collection of Washington incompetents.
He doesn't stick to the script when he gives his campaign speeches; instead, he just chatters aimlessly away. That is in strong contrast to the measured rote that issues from most politician's mouths. This anti-Washington, anti-establishment, anti-canned platitude prattling could have a Palin-esque effect. A good many Americans have gotten tired of listening to the politicized rhetoric coming out of the capital.
Donald “Filthy Rich” Trump
It must be added that Trump has a weighty argument on his side: $8,737,540,000 — that's his net worth which he always announces as “around” $9 billion. He plays rhetorically with that figure and his advisers know that many voters who make fun of Trump for it would do anything — anything — to have such a personal fortune.
His message is simple: I know how to get rich, I know how to stay rich, and those who vote for me will also get that chance. That's the American dream at which many Europeans wrinkle their noses and dismiss as 1950s thinking, but which is alive and well in the USA. He's removing the notion that he's going to Washington to get rich — something many voters believe of most politicians.
Donald “Ringmaster” Trump
All that aside, Trump may have valid economic reasons for his candidacy. His TV shows are losing market share. “The Apprentice” once had an audience of nearly 28 million; that has meanwhile fallen to just under 7 million and his second show is running equally miserably. The enormous stage of a presidential bid will give him an opportunity to once again be in the spotlight. Two other candidates, Mike Huckabee and Ben Carson, may be similarly motivated to run for the presidency. Be that as it may, none of them is complaining about the publicity.
Donald “Narcissistic” Trump
His Trump Towers appearance was seen by many as narcissistic showmanship. Trump repeatedly spoke only in the first person. He spoke in hazy words of how only he could repair the nation. Six years earlier, many of these same people were delighted when a candidate promised to put the torn nation back together and they didn't even laugh when he said he knew how to stem rising sea levels. That candidate became president.
Donald “Shake Things Up” Trump
Trump won't be the Republican nominee for president. But as a candidate who finds the Iraq War dumb, wealth sexy, the current crop of politicians incompetent and simplistic answers enlightening, he may well become the focal point for frustrated voters. There are a lot of those and the Republican candidate's first task is to convince them to vote for him.