Without question, Donald Trump has challenged the structure of the typical presidential campaign. Trump, a billionaire businessman with no previous background in politics, has surprised almost all of America with his unorthodox approach in trying to become the GOP nominee. By self-funding his campaign, sidestepping the norm of political correctness and insulting political leaders, Trump is unlike any presidential candidate this country has ever seen.
While it may seem that Trump’s outlandish remarks regarding Mexicans, Muslims and his fellow presidential hopefuls are idiotic, to him they serve a purpose. By making claims that Muslims should be temporarily banned from entering the U.S. and that all illegal immigrants should be sent back to their native countries, Trump has incited his supporters to bypass some of his radical claims in order to believe he will “Make America Great Again.”
After an in-depth review of Trump’s speeches, interviews and tweets over the last six months, Paul Schwartzman and Jenna Johnson of the Washington Post believe that “Trump is, for the most part, a disciplined and methodical candidate.”
To the average citizen of the U.S., Trump may appear to be anything but disciplined and methodical. Most Americans may view Trump’s campaign as a chaotic mess spiraling out of control, full of hateful and demeaning statements, with no real substance. But, one aspect of Trump’s campaign that he has done exceedingly well is attracting attention. On a daily basis, Trump’s statements dominate news cycles, giving him the ability to reach a nationwide audience, something that most candidates can only dream of, which makes his campaign so unique.
Trump has openly described undocumented Mexican immigrants as “rapists, murderers and drug addicts,” and has referred to the Muslim religion as having a huge problem regarding terrorism. Trump claims that Muslims have a hatred toward Americans, which is why he believes that a temporary ban would be effective in the wake of the San Bernardino shootings. After this statement was issued in a press release, many figured it would mark the end of Trump’s campaign. Even Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton tweeted her dissatisfaction about the proposed ban.
“This is reprehensible, prejudiced and divisive. You [Donald Trump] don’t get it. This makes us less safe,” Clinton stated. Even with numerous other Republicans and Democrats calling this proposal un-American, it bolstered Trump’s ratings.
The fact that Trump’s supporters overlook some of his radical statements is due to his appeal to the fears of Americans. His idea of a temporary ban on Muslims entering the country is a prime example. By using the San Bernardino shooting as a precedent, it puts fear into the hearts of Americans by making them believe those attacks will happen again. In interviews, tweets and debates, Trump constantly strikes fear into Americans, almost hypnotizing them into believing that he is the cure America needs.
Vice President Joe Biden said in an interview with NBC News that he believes Trump could be the next president, but is wary of his campaign strategy, saying, “We always do best when we appeal to our better angels, and we always do poorly when we appeal to our fears and our differences.” Biden thinks that Trump’s actions would sever America, only making things worse within the country.
Trump lacks strategy and detailed organization in almost all of his plans for America. Even with no concrete material, he makes up for it with his unconventional campaign strategy. With nine months between now and the presidential election in November, there is still a lot that can change. Trump has a good chance to win the Republican nomination and may even become the next president of the U.S. All of his success so far can be attributed to his irregular campaign style and I am curious to see exactly how far it will take him.