Judging by his speech at CPAC, and the audience’s reaction to it, Donald Trump has not gone away. Nick Allen reports in The Telegraph that Donald Trump’s political demise was greatly exaggerated. He writes:
In a straw poll of conservative activists at CPAC, Mr Trump won 55 per cent of the vote, way ahead of all rivals.
Asked if they wanted him to run again, 68 per cent said yes. Others wanted someone else to take up the torch of “Trumpism”.
It was interesting that Mr Trump himself spent some time in his speech defining “Trumpism”.
He said its founding principles included great trade deals, low taxes, cutting regulation, strong borders, no riots in the streets, the Second Amendment and a strong military.
If Mr Trump decides not to run, he would undoubtedly be the Republican kingmaker, anointing a younger follower of “Trumpism”.
There is a host of would-be heirs waiting in the wings. At CPAC Ron DeSantis, 42, emerged as the early flavour of the month.
In a straw poll, which was taken without Mr Trump as an option, he won 43 per cent, with the second place candidate on 11 per cent.
Mr DeSantis set out his stall in a fiery speech condemning the “failed Republican establishment” and saying: “What’s true in Florida is what’s true for conservatives across this nation.”
Whether he is seeking to be the Republican nominee, or to be Mr Trump’s running mate, remains to be seen.
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