The Stream

The Trump phenomenon

What does Donald Trump’s rising popularity say about the race for US president?

Donald Trump was not taken seriously when he announced his run for the US Republican (GOP) nomination for president. The Washington Post called him “an aimless, angry leader”. The Huffington Post refused to include him in their political coverage and opted to feature him on their Entertainment section instead. The Wall Street Journal questioned how long people “will keep pretending he’s a serious candidate”. Even big shots in the Republican Party do not think he’ll win the nomination.

Trump has been called sexist and racist; he’s gotten into Twitter wars with a Fox News anchor and GOP rivals; and he’s made a series of controversial comments on various topics, including women, immigrants, Mexico, Black Lives Matter and the Iran deal. He’s become a favourite target of US comedians like Stephen Colbert, Jon Stewart, Bill Maher and George Lopez

Despite all of this, the billionaire businessman-celebrity has been climbing the polls and his “Make America Great Again!” message continues to resonate. Currently Trump leads the GOP race with a 33 percent backing from registered Republicans and Republican-leaning voters.

So, who are Trump’s supporters? And what does his rising popularity say about the 2016 race for US president?

In this episode of The Stream, we speak with: 

Stephan Richter @theglobalist
Editor in Chief, The Globalist

Hector Luis Alamo @HectorLuisAlamo
Contributing Editor, Latino Rebels

Liza Wisner @lizawisner
Former finalist, “The Apprentice”

Dr. Charlotte Laws @CharlotteLaws
Columnist, Trump supporter

What do you think? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.