I’m a Trump cheerleader. After 25 years as a lobbyist for Trump and Chairman of his 2000 Presidential Exploratory Committee, I like the man. I have studied mountains of polling conducted by the Trump casino interests studying the Trump brand for twenty years. I have studied the shocking new polls that show Trump vaulting to a lead over conventional politicians. A new PPP poll for Talking Points memo showed Trump leading the field.
Trump is a middle class phenomena. Middle aged, middle income, middle class voters are Trump’s core. Hispanic voters give him high favorable ratings as do African Americans and poor whites. The higher your level of education the more likely you are to loath Trump. If you are self-made you are 70% more likely to like Trump than if you have inherited money. Small businessmen like Trump, Wall Street Gekkos do not. The Apprentice has enhanced his standing because his short segments show him being cool, tough and decisive, things voters are looking for after the vacillation of Barrack Obama.
Trump appeals to the strivers. Trump lives as they would live if they were rich. Trump’s over the top lifestyle of the biggest and the best appeals to these voters. The Ivy League educated? Not so much. Old Money? Forget it. Trump appeals to the Perot and Buchanan voter suspicious of both parties. The Tea Party is a natural launching pad for Trump.
Now the Club for Growth is bashing Trump for positions he took ten years ago under far different circumstances. Trump favored a tax on the super-rich to kill the deficit. He was willing to pay himself. He is opposed to the idea today. Hard to imagine voters seeking consistency will switch to Mitt Romney who used to be a pro-abortion, pro gay marriage liberal.
Political operatives who come to work for Trump will soon realize he doesn’t need words put in his mouth and has a very clear sense of what he wants to say and do. Trump is soaring in the polls now because he is following his own populist instincts and expressing himself in street language the average person can understand.
It takes stature, money, energy and discipline to be elected President. Trump has the stature and the money, so far he has demonstrated the energy but whether he has the discipline to stay on his core themes and to parry the attacks on him without getting personal remains to be seen. Much of this furor is about the Trump brand. At last weekends Tea Party Tax rally in Boca Raton Trump asked his host if he should take off his trademark pastel tie for his speech. “No,” he was told, “you gotta look like you look on TV.”