A CNN/ORC poll released on September 10th, shows Donald Trump soaring to new heights in the Republican presidential race. The poll, conducted from September 4-8, found Trump gaining 8 percentage points since August. Trump now leads the GOP field with 32 percent support, followed by Ben Carson at 19 percent and Jeb Bush at just 9 percent support.
Trump’s growing popularity was made possible by huge surges in support from college educated Republicans and from female GOP voters. His campaign built on racist rhetoric and ridiculing others is now not only appealing to male voters and the uneducated, but it is increasingly capturing the hearts and minds of educated Republicans and female GOP voters as well.
In the August poll, Trump had the support of 16 percent of college graduates. In the September poll that number had risen to 28 percent. His standing with female voters rose from 20 percent to 33 percent over the same one month time period.
With Trump essentially winning across every significant Republican demographic, pundits are dumbfounded in trying to explain his popularity. None dare point out the obvious. Republican voters, by and large, support Donald Trump’s loud mouthed bigotry and his unapologetic sexism. As unflattering as that conclusion may be, it is clearly demonstrated by GOP voters continuing to flock to Trump as their first choice for president.
Trump’s latest controversial comments where he blatantly ridiculed Carly Fiorina’s physical appearance are being rightfully criticized by journalists and fellow GOP candidates alike. However, it is not likely to cost him votes. Since Trump’s insinuation that Megyn Kelly asked him tough questions because she was menstruating, helped him rise in the polls after the first GOP debate, there is little reason to suspect he will suffer any fallout for him comments about Fiorina’s face. Mean-spirited GOP voters after all, seem more interested in egging Trump on, than in penalizing him for his crude sexist remarks.
As long as Republican voters continue to reward Trump for being an obnoxious bully, he has no reason to stop hurling insults and zero incentive to dial down his inflammatory rhetoric. Journalists can criticize Trump all they want, but he is a symptom rather than the cause of the problem. He continues to perform well in the Republican polls, because Republican voters, male and female, educated and uneducated, seem to share his arrogant, simplistic and bigoted world view.
Keith Brekhus is a progressive American who currently resides in Red Lodge, Montana. He is co-host for the Liberal Fix radio show. He holds a Master’s Degree in Sociology from the University of Missouri. In 2002, he ran for Congress as a Green Party candidate in the state of Missouri. In 2014, he worked as a field organizer for Democrat Ann Kirkpatrick’s successful re-election bid in Arizona’s 1st Congressional District. He can be followed on Twitter @keithbrekhus or on Facebook.