Bad politics, not media, helped Trump secure presidential nomination

Source:Xinhua Published: 2016-5-8 19:48:01

Barack Obama on Friday seemed to indicate that too much coverage of billionaire Donald Trump has helped him secure the Republican presidential nomination.

However, it is not the media but public anger over bad politics that has helped Trump the most. The roaring rise of bombastic Trump does not merely depend on his tactical campaign, but is attributable to his capitalizing on negative public sentiment. Obama tried to remind reporters and the US public on Friday that the presidential election is a serious business. "This is not entertainment. This is not a reality show. This is a contest for the presidency of the United States," said the president.

In recent years, ordinary people in the US have expressed their strong dislike for Washington insiders, disappointment over Congress's political stalemate, distaste of big-money politics and fear of terrorism, economic recession and unemployment.

Trump, who strode to success in a couple of months, well knows the amount of frustration among the white working class population, especially those in rural areas, and took advantage of such sentiment to forge his image of Washington outsider.

In March, he responded to criticism over a fistfight that happened at one of his campaign rallies, saying "I am just a messenger." "The people are angry about the fact that for 12 years, the workers in this country haven't had a pay increase," he argued.

Brad Griffin, 34, who writes an influential blog under the name Hunter Wallace, told his readers his opinion on the reason why Trump was "soaring."

Repelled by big-money politics, he chose to believe billionaire Trump is independent while "all of other little candidates are owned by their own little billionaires."

The New Yorker said a satisfied country would not produce politicians like Trump. If Republican voters are not tired of their leaders, Trump remains to be a marginal politician. On the other hand, Trump could carry on with his successful campaign, in which the conservative establishment has been desperate for him to be finished even from the beginning, as he has activated segments of the electorate that other candidates could not, or would not.

The wealthy real estate mogul, beauty contest boss and gambling house giant, is very familiar with celebrity effect and has rich experience in TV and social media communication, which is exactly the weakness of other candidates.

The 2016 presidential election may well be unique and abnormal in this sense. However, the rise of Trump is by no means accidental or a black swan event, but is reflective of political distortion and social shifts in the US.

US' fears and frustrations are powerful. The rage over Washington politics and elites, the widening income disparity and social inequality and the non-transparent big-money politics have so far helped make Trump invincible in the Republican primary.

This is a commentary from the Xinhua News Agency. The article first appeared on Xinhua.

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