As the 2016 elections are approaching, the heat is turning up in both parties to nominate a candidate that they believe could run the country effectively. In looking at the drama coming from the GOP, however, it seems to be more of a circus than a primary, with Donald Trump, real estate developer and TV personality, leading the pack. It seems that the candidates of the Republican Party this year are unable to interact with each other without resorting to jabs at the others character or politics. With this still being the initial beginning of the race, it is difficult to tell how things will be when the elections get closer, but things are kicking up in both how the candidates are relating to the public and how they are relating with each other.
A recent example of these mentioned clashes, is between Trump and the usually quiet Marco Rubio. Though Trump doesn’t exactly have anything nice to say about any of his fellow candidates as a whole, he is shown to attack as soon as someone comments on him or his actions. Even as many news stations have foreseen Jeb Bush, the former Governor of Florida, as Trump’s main antagonist, it’s starting to appear as if his sights have shifted as he has recently been taunting Rubio with some schoolyard insults. At the recent Values Voters Summit Trump lashed out at Rubio, calling him a clown for his support of immigration, this statement, however, was met by overwhelming boo’s from the vastly Christian Evangelical crowd. Trump followed his “clown” comment by afterwards referring to his fellow candidate as a “baby.” In what has been seen by the press as a tactical move, Rubio parried these comments by noting how the comments made Trump appear, as an “insecure and touchy” guy, with the marked contrast of intelligence presented in the two comments being highlighted by the press. To fully display the level of his insults though Trump has commented on Rubio’s sweatiness and appearance, comments that have been marked as petty and inconsequential.
With this just being the most recent of a long string of events that have marred Trump’s presidential campaign, it is difficult to see how he maintains a lead in the polls. There are some that are drawn by the basis of his message and slogan “Make America Great Again”, yet some say that they will vote for him to watch him fail. So evidently Trump attracts a wide variety of people, from the extremely conservative to the liberal anarchist. In merely his formal announcement of candidacy on June 16, 2015, he made comments that were attacking illegal immigration and proponents of it who wish to find easier tracks towards citizenship for this growing population in America. His comment’s that have been parodied and mocked since then were “When Mexico sends its people, they're not sending their best...They're sending people that have lots of problems, and they're bringing those problems with. They're bringing drugs. They're bringing crime. They're rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.” This comment had many repercussions, one of which was that it caused some businesses to cut ties with Trump, most notably NBC and Macy’s, both of which he denounced in his following speech at his rally in Phoenix, Arizona. Trump’s candidacy is pockmarked by many such controversies. Closely following
this event Trump insulted former presidential candidate and Arizona senator John McCain for comments he made about those who supported Trump. He was recorded mocking McCain’s title of War Veteran, saying that he wouldn’t consider him one because of McCain’s imprisonment. These comments combined with ones that he has made against women and immigrants have led to him being seen as a joke by many.
Apart from Trump, though, the rest of the party isn’t fairing much better. With many of the candidates making comments aimed against the others, it is difficult to see the issues being addressed. Though these kinds of disagreements are common in presidential races, this candidacy is being dwarfed by news coverage of such events as mentioned before. At the same speech at which Trump made the comments against Rubio, the retired neurosurgeon turned presidential candidate, Ben Carson, made comments saying that he would not support the bid of a Muslim candidate unless he denounced Sharia Law. The response to this was widespread and dramatic, requiring Carson to further discuss and defend his stance. While this was occurring, though, Carly Fiorina, a fellow candidate who is moving up in the polls due to a success in the last debate, went on to The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon to essentially stand against Carson and amends that she would vote for any faithful person regardless of their particular religious belief.
So is this what has come to be expected from the Republican Party, a back and forth argument on who looks better or who is more accepting? With these behaviors pervading throughout the party, it is hard to see the stances and opinions that could come to benefit the country. So when it comes time to choose which one to nominate, it will be a choice of who could argue their point and put down their opponent the best, a skill more in tune with slam poetry than a presidency.