September 13, 2015

"Robust" is not the word that came to mind when I heard Bobby Jindal taking shots at Donald Trump's hair. Here's George Will on this weekend's Fox News Sunday during a discussion on the GOP presidential primary turning into a circular firing squad with Trump in the middle:

WALLACE: Brit, were there any winners here?

HUME: Well, no. I don't think so. Ben Carson ended up apologizing for what he said, expressing doubts about, you know, Trump's Christian faith. And I don't think Bobby Jindal has so far gained much.

What tends to happen in these situations is when some politicians attacks another in a race like this is it may hurt the candidate who is under attack but it tends also not to particularly help the candidate who does the attacking. The benefit of it tends to redound to somebody else. So, that’s sort of where I think this is, there’s little evidence yet that these attacks have begun to hurt Trump, although if they are mounted in a sustained way over time, they may indeed hurt.

WILLIAMS: You know, I think it’s helping Trump. I do. I look at the polls this week. I think Trump has now tripled his support that he had when he got in this race. He is up, I think, eight to ten points since August, Brit. He is gaining -- not only, this is unbelievable to me, he’s gaining with women, he is gaining with college-educated people. Now, more than half of Republicans think he is the inevitable nominee.

So, all roads lead to Donald Trump. Every conversation about a candidate in this race is about their reaction to Donald Trump.

WALLACE: George?

WILL: Well, surely it does. The air starts leaking out of the Trump balloon. Credit should go to Bobby Jindal who, in his speech at the National Press Club this week did not tiptoe around the issue. He stayed this is an extremely destructive man doing extreme damage to the Republican brand --


WALLACE: Don’t you think, Jindal is 1 percent of the polls, and this is the only way he can get any attention? I mean, if he had given a speech on tax reform, frankly, we would have ignored it.

WILL: And we would have ignored it because it’s not timely. Taking on Trump is timely and the only Republican who has the kidney to do it in a robust way is Bobby Jindal.

They're all desperate for attention in a media environment where Trump has been rewarded for every nasty bombastic thing that comes out of his mouth and sucked all the oxygen out of the room with these networks that care about ratings and advertising revenue above all else. The reason the other candidates have been ignored comes mainly down to one thing -- money.

And sorry George, but the Republican "brand" hasn't been destroyed by Trump. They've done a good job of that all on their own before he came along. He's just stopped them from being able to pretend that their base isn't just a bunch of angry bigots that they've been whipping into a frenzy for decades now.

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