I just watched my first Republican debate (as opposed to just hearing about what was said from the media) and I now understand what’s going on with Trump.
It’s quite simple.
He’s a billionaire with the biggest ego and the clearest language that expresses three things repeatedly:
- Strength (belief that he can get it done)
- Nostalgia (a vision of returning to our greatness, and going beyond)
- Newness (belief that it can and will be different with him)
Everyone else is failing in one or more of these.
- Jeb isn’t strong, and he isn’t pitching a vision of winning. He’s also an insider.
- Cruz isn’t as strong as Trump, and he also isn’t pitching a vision of winning. He’s also an insider.
- Rubio isn’t strong (especially on immigration), and he’s too much of an insider.
- Carson is a newcomer, but he doesn’t project strength and he’s not selling a vision.
The others are background noise.
People (especially Republicans) don’t want to think right now; they want to believe.
You don’t get people to believe with arguments and details and plans. You get people to believe with strength and vision. And that’s exactly what Trump is doing.
That’s why he’s ahead in this race.
It doesn’t really matter what he says, or how much he fumbles, or how foolish or non-existent his plans are. As long as he can keep conveying strength, vision, and newness, he’ll keep winning.
It’s not about what he says. It’s about how he makes people feel. And he makes people feel like America can be great again.
It’s that simple.