Inquiring minds want to know: Is he in it to win it? Or is he in it to get himself more publicity?
Is Donald Trump serious about wanting to be president? The conventional wisdom is no. He’s toyed with the idea in the past, but has never formally entered a political race. And why should he?
His record in business may not be perfect and his personal life has at times been very messy, but if there’s one thing Trump knows and is expert at, it’s the art of building a brand. Whether he’s serious or not, he leads his potential competitors in the polls and his name and Celebrity Apprentice are on the tips of many people’s tongues, not to mention the bundle he’s saving with all of the free publicity.
Politico posted a fun survey of political experts and opinion shapers about just how serious The Donald, who leads other potential candidates in the polls, should be taken, which elicited some interesting responses, like the ones below.
“At the cattle-call level of politics, Trump mutes the negatives of other candidates: His business career competes with [Mitt] Romney's, his private life and marriage gossip give Newt [Gingrich] some breathing space, his star-shine is brighter than [Tim] Pawlenty's, he's even folksier (in a New York City manner) than Barbour, and he’s brasher than [Ron] Paul, [Sarah] Palin and [Michele] Bachmann put together,” said David Biespiel, poet and founder of the Attic Institute.
“High poll readings for celebrity candidates melt like spring frost when they are subjected to the withering summer sun of scrutiny. Donald Trump is catnip for the media right now, and why not? He bestrides the stage like Godzilla, while the other colorless candidates fade into the scenery. But when the subject changes, as it inevitably will, to the business and personal record compiled by Trump, poll numbers will adjust (if indeed those recorded as Trump voters are really likely to vote in Republican primaries and caucuses),” said Larry J. Sabato, a politics professor at the University of Virginia.
If Sabato is right, Trump could find himself on the receiving end of “You’re fired.”
(Photo:Gary Rothstein/ Landov)