Donald Trump Solidifies His Lead, but Leaves Many Nervous

10 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Donald Trump Solidifies His Lead, but Leaves Many Nervous.

Even in a swirl of controversy over plans to bar Muslims from the United States, Donald Trump remains untouchable as the frontrunner for the GOP nomination in South Carolina.Twenty-four percent of 828 likely Republican voters surveyed by Winthrop between Nov. 30 and Dec. 7 said they would vote for the New York real estate mogul. Trump occupies his strongest position yet in the race for the Republican presidential nomination, yet nearly two-thirds of American voters say they are concerned or frightened about the prospect of a Trump presidency, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News nationwide poll. In a separate question, the poll found 61 percent of respondents would support an increase in the state gas tax if the money went to repair roads and transportation infrastructure.

And certainly not the presidency of a country founded by religious outliers fleeing persecution and whose census takers cannot even track faith affiliation. Trump lambasted President Barack Obama for not bombing oil wells used by the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) to fund its operations. “One of the reasons Obama didn’t want to bomb the oil is because of the environment. Winthrop cautioned in a footnote that previous polling shows support for a gas tax hike drops significantly when the poll question mentions a specific amount for the increase. That odd-sounding accusation originated with comments from a former CIA director who left the agency a year before the U.S. bombing campaign against ISIL began. Trump commands the support of 35 percent of Republican primary voters, leading his closest competitors, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas (16 percent) and Ben Carson (13 percent) by a more than 2-to-1 margin.

But the idea is so repugnant to most Americans, so antithetical to their foundational myth, that the rare politician to suggest it has remained on the fringes, mercifully far from the levers of power. Though perhaps most campaigns are marked by exaggerations, dodges and even outright lies, critics accuse Trump of basing his campaign on racist inaccuracies and playing to voters’ xenophobia.

Along these lines, the candidate has accused the Mexican government of pushing rapists and drug dealers into the U.S., said thousands of Muslims celebrated in New Jersey as the World Trade Center towers fell on Sept. 11, 2001, and tweeted that the black-on-white murder rate in the U.S. is 81 percent. Trump said, amending that comment to add that FDR’s internment of thousands of “enemy aliens” was “actually far worse” than his own plan to keep out “people that want to blow up our buildings, our cities.” While the historians debate whether Mr. At least 1,000 people braved the weather to see Trump speak in Waterville Valley at the White Mountain Athletic Club last Tuesday, according to a crowd estimate provided by local police. His endless disregard for the boundaries of acceptable political discourse only serves to ensure that he dominates the news cycle – to the detriment of rivals struggling to gain basic name recognition – and to consolidate his support among a slice of the electorate that is hopping mad and sick of slick career politicians.

A 54 percent majority of Democratic primary voters said they had made up their minds about who they will support, while 64 percent of Republicans say it is still too early to be sure. Republican pollster Daron Shaw says, “There are enough people in the last two nights of the sample to question the widespread assumption that Trump’s comments will hurt him among GOP primary voters.” Shaw conducts the Fox News Poll with Democratic pollster Chris Anderson.

Trump’s support is still limited to a subsection of GOP voters – lower-middle-class whites, without college degrees and with weak ties to any religion. During a question-and-answer session, Ward asked the candidate what events in his life inspired his patriotism. “This is what I like about Donald Trump. In a head-to-head match-up, 42% of GOP primary voters say Donald Trump is the Republican candidate most likely to beat Hillary Clinton in the general election next year. The favorites among white evangelical Christians voting in the GOP primary are Trump (34 percent), Carson (18 percent), Cruz (15 percent) and Rubio (12 percent).

I really believe, at the core, he’s very patriotic,” Ward said before the rally. “I really believe he loves America and he wants to see the best for America and for the American people.” With Trump’s new comments this week advocating a policy of keeping all Muslims from entering the U.S., a fresh round of condemnations have put the spotlight back on the candidate and served his efforts to remain at the top of the polls in key primary states. To just then call, as he did, for stricter gun control was to demonstrate a profound disconnect with average folks who will never see terrorism through his detached, analytical lens. She likes his bluntness and his disregard for political correctness. “I just think he likes America, which is what we don’t see right now … and he’s very successful because America makes that possible. The poll was conducted December 5-8, 2015, by telephone with live interviewers among a random sample of 801 South Carolina voters selected from a statewide voter file.

And those who prioritize economic issues back the same four candidates: Trump (32 percent), Rubio (14 percent), Carson (12 percent) and Cruz (12 percent). At the same time, the poll shows national security is an area of vulnerability for Trump: 25 percent say he is the “most qualified” Republican to handle the issue, closely followed by Cruz at 18 percent. Trump’s unique ability hijack any debate – without paid advertising or other traditional tactics used by political campaigns – forces his rivals to play his game or fade into the background.

Trump’s strong support among largely white working-class Republicans and among opponents of immigration is no coincidence, according to Susan Moir, the director of the Labor Resource Center at the University of Massachusetts at Boston. “It is difficult to talk about Trump and his appeal to frightened white voters without either dismissing him as a crazy fascist or using deeply rooted — and forgotten — concepts in the American experience,” she explained. “He is a classic nativist, a direct descendant of the Know-Nothings, who feared Catholic immigrants in the 1840s.” Donald Landry, 55, sat next to his daughter, a college student, before the Trump rally on Tuesday while the Rolling Stones’ “Wild Horses” played in the background. He hasn’t settled on a candidate yet, but he says he’s concerned about economic inequality and people taking advantage of government welfare programs. Silver remains cautious: “If Trump gets a lot of people to turn up for him and vote in Iowa, that’s an epistemological game-changer.” The Republican National Committee is equally horrified at the thought of Mr. Those characteristics outrank nominating someone who would shake things up in Washington (16 percent), have true conservative values (14 percent) and beat the Democrat (10 percent).

Asked about Trump’s controversial statements on immigration and Muslim Americans, Landry said he wasn’t concerned and criticized what he called “political correctness.” His main concern, he said, is with fixing the country. It influences, I think, weak-minded people, instead of the people that really need to know the facts about what’s going on,” Landry said. “This country’s in sad shape right now, and we need someone to change it.” Moir had tough words for the media too, but from the opposite perspective. In New Hampshire, Trump told the crowd that last month’s attacks in Paris, which left 130 people dead, caused him to shift his campaign’s focus from economics to national security and foreign policy. He has vowed to end the United States’ trade deficit with China, fight Beijing’s currency manipulation, bring jobs back from abroad and create jobs at home.

In addition, a majority of Republican voters (61 percent) says it feels like the economy is getting worse for their family, while over half of Democrats say things are getting better (53 percent).

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