With poll after poll out showing Donald Trump continuing to surge, even in places such as Florida where he currently leads Jeb Bush by 6 points, the question of staying power is coming to the forefront. Some insiders believe he has peaked too soon, while others believe he has yet to hit a ceiling of support.
Report from Politico:
About three quarters of Republican early-state insiders say they believe Donald Trump has peaked — but many acknowledge that may also be wishful thinking.
That’s the assessment from this week’s POLITICO Caucus, our weekly bipartisan survey of the top operatives, strategists and activists in Iowa and New Hampshire.
The controversial real estate mogul and GOP presidential candidate provoked some caucus insiders into offering expletives and other colorful language when asked whether Trump has hit his ceiling.
“The McCain smear and giving out Graham’s cellphone? What an asshole,” vented a New Hampshire Republican, who says Trump has peaked. “Trumpism does not represent some deeper sentiment within the party, nor has he tapped into something a more conventional candidate can now co-opt. His candidacy has as much substance and meaning as cotton candy. I didn’t like him before. Now I loathe him.”
Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump speaks after arriving at the airport for a visit to the U.S. Mexico border in Laredo, Texas, Thursday, July 23, 2015. Trump is touring the border area to highlight his concerns about immigration policies.
An Iowa Republican said, “yes,” when asked whether Trump has hit his zenith, but clarified, “I’d like to think so. But who the hell really knows anymore?” [Emphasis added]
The insiders weighed in following another week in which Trump dominated political coverage.
They’re saying about 75% of GOP insiders think he peaked, but I’m wondering if they actually think he peaked, or whether they simply hope he peaked. I think the first debate on August 6 will begin to tell us whether Trump is able to continue growing support or whether he’ll be knocked backed down to earth amid a large field of qualified candidates when they’re all standing side by side.