Since his official announcement for the presidency little more than a week ago, real estate mogul Donald Trump has skyrocketed to the GOP’s top tier in two separate polls.
According to Quinnipiac University’s most recent Iowa poll, Trump has surged into a tie with Ben Carson for second place in Iowa with 10% behind Scott Walker’s 18% command.
A second poll by CNN/WMUR shows Trump also in second place with 11% behind Jeb Bush in New Hampshire, and in a separate CNN poll he holds the same spot nationally.
This in spite of being dropped by NBC, Univision and Macy’s, or perhaps because of it. Trump stuck to his guns regarding the controversial statements he has made. Many voters are attracted to candidates who don’t back down.
Indeed, analysts point to two factors that likely are credited for Trump’s meteoric rise. First, Republican primary voters are anxious for a non-politician who won’t hold back on rhetoric that “tells it like it is”.
It is a tact already employed successfully by Gov. Chris Christie with some success in New Hampshire, despite the ongoing fallout over his NJ scandals.
Second, Trump’s rhetoric is clearly motivated with a populist flavor that appeals to multiple voter groups within the Republican tent. His bold anti-immigrant language appeals to a broad swath of voters angry with both parties for refusing to solve the border crisis.
Similarly, Trump’s argument for strict controls on trade with China offer an appeal to blue collar voters who distrust Washington for sending jobs overseas via global trade pacts.
Telling it like it is — at least how it is according to Trump — could backfire, of course, when the vote is put to the American people at large.
Whether his rhetoric will serve on the debate stage as a vent for Republican frustration or as a challenge to other candidates on uncomfortable issues will be the subject of speculation ahead of the August 6th debut.