Trump, and the Punditry’s Scary Groupthink

Trump, and the Punditry’s Scary Groupthink, by Sean Trende (senior elections analyst for RealClearPolitics). The chattering classes really don’t like Trump:

To be blunt, everyone has lost their damned minds lately. Twitter, and commentary in general, has become a giant echo chamber. My Twitter feed has devolved into a mélange of undifferentiated opinions explaining not only why Donald Trump shouldn’t win this election, but also how and why it can’t possibly happen. I don’t just mean an overall take that he’s likely to lose. I mean a complete and utter rejection of any evidence proffered that might point in a direction that is favorable to Trump. Oh, and by the way, he might also be the Fifth Horseman of the Apocalypse. …

In the ongoing clash of modern masses versus the post-modern politically correct, the masses finally have a champion willing and able to take on the political correctness that is endemic in both main parties:

I believe that most people in my Twitter feed, left and right, don’t know many genuine Trump supporters, if any. I can count two, maybe three among my Facebook friends, and I went to high school in Oklahoma. … There’s a cosmopolitan vs. traditionalist divide that runs through our politics, with cultural cosmopolitans running both parties.

The fact that Trump is so firmly positioning himself against those cosmopolitans, more so than any national politician since Ronald Reagan, makes it difficult to evaluate his campaign, and deprives us of the conversation we need, because for the first time in a long time, a major party candidate isn’t really trying to curry favor with opinion leaders.

He acknowledges that the politically correct elites don’t really have a clue about Trump, never have:

None of this is to say that Trump will win. I would not at all be surprised if Trump implodes before autumn, or next week for that matter. Clinton really could bring home the Sanders voters, and the remaining NeverTrumpers could prove intransigent. President Obama’s popularity could continue to rise. Democrats will undoubtedly sharpen their attacks. All other things being equal, I still think there’s probably a 70 percent chance of Clinton winning.

But I will confess it is really difficult to sort out how much of this is a dispassionate analysis of the data, how much of it is me being influenced (perhaps correctly) by the overwhelming anti-Trump consensus out there, and how much of it is my own discomfort with Trump. If we’re being honest, it’s why so many of us were surprised by Trump’s continued rise in the polls last fall and then again in May. It’s why I think there’s a not-insignificant chance that we’re underestimating Trump’s chances of victory in November.