Kevin Price
GOP may push Trump to run independently
By Kevin Price
July 17, 2015

The media has a love/hate relationship with Donald Trump. He is at once, breathtaking in his proclamations and ludicrous in his behavior. He is hard to ignore. Like the entertainment value of watching two trains collide, no one in media wants to miss a Trump event. At the same time, they don't want to take him too seriously.

When Donald Trump formally announced his intentions to run for President of the United States, there was a huge crowd in attendance, including plenty from the media. Few other candidates with zero electoral experience or other significant public service has ever garnered the media attention that Trump has received.

Donald Trump's announcement was classic showmanship, with the billionaire taking an escalator down to his stage and audience applauding all the way. What he had to say was the exact type of "red meat" that the media loves and they were eager to share it with their audiences. I think they are still reeling from the overwhelmingly positive response Trump has received from untold numbers of voters, as he is seen as a champion of everyday Americans who are tired of a government that will not seriously deal with tough issues, such as illegal immigrants. Americans have seem to grow tired of politicians and their soft rhetoric and guarded stances, when it comes to serious problems facing the nation.

How big is the Trump rise in the 2016 race? Virtually overnight Trump became one of the top two contenders. His support among voters is only continuing to grow.Breitbart reports "Real estate magnate and 2016 GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump has skyrocketed to Republican front runner status, as a new poll from Reuters/Ipsos has Trump tied for first place with former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. The rest of the pack is far behind them."

How far behind him? Breitbart, referring to the Reuters poll, stated "Trump pulled in 15.8 percent, compared to Bush's 16.1 percent in the poll of 404 self-identified Republicans taken from July 6 to July 10. Since the poll's credibility interval is 5.7 percent, that puts both Bush and Trump in a league of their own atop the field, as the next best candidate, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, doesn't even break 10 percent." Single digits isn't just a Christie problem, but is also an issue for other major candidates, with Marco Rubio (who was in second place in April) plummeting to tenth place and less than 4 percent in the poll. Scott Walker, once a national and Iowa favorite, is now in fifth place, having gone from 14 percent to less than 6 percent since April. The GOP candidates have largely been a lackluster group, unable to gather any traction and essentially providing a mere "flavor of the month." Trump has made the GOP race interesting in a way that makes the Republican establishment very nervous.

So what should they do with Donald Trump? Well, what they have been doing to date does not appear effective. I have been watching national politics since the 1970s and I have never seen the chairman of either major party publicly scold a candidate in the primary season. According to Business Insider, Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus, in a phone call with Trump, urged the candidate to "tone down his inflammatory comments that have infuriated a key election constituency' (Latinos)" Such a statement could be seen as blatant bias and even an "anti-endorsement," the equivalent of an endorsement for others if you are the subject of such criticism.

In the past week Trump has threatened to run as an independent if mistreated and has since said that is not his intentions. What do we learn from these mixed messages? Trump is entirely unpredictable and the last thing the GOP should want to do is give him an incentive to bolt. If there is one person who will not tolerate being "mistreated," and is likely to hold a grudge, it is Donald Trump.

If the GOP is worried about Donald Trump as the nominee of the Republican Party, should they not be much more concerned about the him dropping a billion dollars in an independent campaign that can only sink the party's chances? The GOP should handle Trump with kid gloves or plan on losing their best opportunity to sin a presidential election in years. The GOP is stuck between a rock and a hard place. It must handle Trump with extreme care.

© Kevin Price


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Kevin Price

Kevin Price is Publisher and Editor in Chief of

His background is eclectic and includes years of experience in both business and public policy, as well as two decades of experience in broadcast journalism. He was an aide to U.S. Senator Gordon Humphrey (R-NH) and later went on to work in policy areas with some of the nation's leading think tanks including the National Center for Public Policy Research and was part of the Heritage Foundation's Annual Guide to Public Policy Experts... (more)


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