I mentioned yesterday that pundits keep saying that THIS TIME reality television star and GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump has gone too far and will alienate primary voters…only The Donald keeps on trucking, consistently in the lead in both state and national polls. The latest: a new poll out from HuffPost/YouGov finds that Republican debate watchers sided with Trump over Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly in Trump’s latest kerfuffle.
Some, like Ezra Klein at Vox and Nate Silver at fivethirtyeight, argued that Trump would lose this round because Fox is popular among Republicans. But Trump’s polling numbers barely took a dent and Fox quickly caved to Trump, not the other way around.
Now, the latest polling numbers suggest that GOP voters took Trump’s side in the spat. This can’t be that surprising since the crowd cheered when Trump explained away his grotesque cracks as being about Rosie O’Donnell, earning attaboys from right-wing social media. Here’s the results from Huffington Post:
[A] new HuffPost/YouGov survey shows GOP debate-watchers mostly sided with Trump over Kelly. Fifty percent of Republicans or Republican leaners who watched at least part of the debate said they agreed with his criticism of Kelly’s moderation, while just 30 percent agreed with Kelly. The rest didn’t support either or said they were unsure.
After Trump made a “blood coming out of her wherever” (he claimed he meant nose, but…), Red State editor Erick Erickson said Trump had gone too far and disinvited from his Tea Party pow wow that is literally called The Gathering. But Erickson himself has made similarly awful comments about women for years and years. Other heroes of the right-wing masses, like Rush Limbaugh, are even worse. The dynamic here — Kelly points out that Trump says offensive stuff, Trump shrugs and says hey, you can’t take a joke, you’re too p.c., don’t police my tone — within the conservative base, that is a dynamic that has been a winner for the Trump side of the argument for a very long time.
The conservative movement and this television network and this political party have for years stoked up voters on the idea that racism and misogyny were just fake problems cooked up by whiny liberals and the mainstream media. You can’t just turn that faucet off because Trump is inconvenient, or because this time the woman he insulted was one of Fox’s own. This is a monster of their own creation.