Donald Trump is the front runner for the Republican nomination for president, and there are many Americans and politicians who aren’t thrilled about that fact. While it is a reality that Trump has been indicted on more than 90 felony counts in various jurisdictions in the last year, the first former president to ever be indicted for crimes, it’s also true that Americans simply do not seem to care.

Trump in the Primaries

Trump’s primary season has been filled with town hall appearances and interviews, though he has been notably absent from many mainstream events such as the RNC debates. His absence has been called out by others who have run for the nomination, notably current opponent Nikki Haley, but that hasn’t stopped Trump from dancing to his own tune.

Source: Wikimedia/Gage Skidmore

It’s a choice that seems to have resonated deeply with voters. Despite the fact that the Republican primary field was highly crowded in the beginning, Trump has still pulled out ahead of the other would-be candidates as, one by one, they’ve all dropped out of the race.

Donald Trump v. Nikki Haley

The race has come down to two candidates, now that several state primaries have come and gone. Donald Trump is still the clear frontrunner for the nomination, but he is not alone in the race. Nikki Haley, a former United States Ambassador and former Governor of South Carolina, has vowed not to drop out of the race.

Source: Wikimedia/Bill Clark

This is in spite of the fact that Nikki Haley is trailing significantly behind Donald Trump in almost every single primary race. Even in South Carolina, her home state, she lost the primary to Trump in a twenty point loss, 40% to Donald Trump’s 60% of registered Republican primary voters.

Nikki Haley, the Republican Underdog

Nikki Haley has vowed to stay in the race despite the losses. Her campaign has spun her primary performance as an indictment of Donald Trump, given that he is not winning by the landslide that mainstream Republicans, the RNC, or Trump himself expected to.

Source: Wikimedia/South Carolina Governor Nikki R. Haley

She has also used Trump’s less-than-expected primary performance as a commentary on registered Republicans opinion on the former president. Haley has pointed out multiple times that the vast majority of Americans don’t want either Biden or Trump as the president again, and that it’s time for a generational shift in leadership.

Haley is Moderate, But Can’t Win

Haley’s intentions might be noble in attempting to provide a more “moderate” candidate for independents and middle-of-the-road voters, but she’s far from the only candidate who has attempted the strategy. Chris Christie also attempted to paint himself as a moderate Republican during his short-lived campaign, and he dropped out like all the others.

Source: Wikimedia/Glenn Youngkin

The fact of the matter is that Nikki Haley is a long-shot candidate for president. Donald Trump, in spite of his legal issues and some of the bad press that has followed him regarding the January 6 attack on the capitol, is still the favorite for the nomination.

The Mainstream Media Wants to Ignore Trump’s Popularity

Trump’s popularity is something that many in the mainstream media, and particularly the liberal media, are desperate to ignore. It’s much easier to point out Trump’s alleged flaws and discuss the various court cases against him that look at the true patterns that are slowly emerging in voter’s habits as the months go on.

Source: Wikimedia/The White House from Washington

Larry Kudlow, the former Director of the National Economic Council of the United States and current conservative commentator on Fox Business, has discussed the patterns that voters are revealing at length. In a blog post, he pointed out some interesting patterns that have emerged in Biden and Trump’s fundraising.

Differences Between Biden and Trump

Many liberals have been quick to point out the amount of fundraising that Trump has accepted from corporate and big ticket donors, ignoring the fact that President Biden is equally culpable of accepting money from the big fish donors.

Source: Wikimedia/The White House

A piece that was written by an economist named Larry Lindsay, taken from the database of the Federal Election Commission, shows that contributors to Joe Biden were heavily skewed towards highly educated demographics, such as college professors, scientists, and writers.

Corporate Donations for Both Parties

Likewise, the biggest corporate donors to Biden were employees of Google, Microsoft, IBM, and Kaiser Permanente. Trump accepted large corporate donations from Walmart, FedEx, and UPS, drawing a clear divide between the types of companies who support the different political parties.

Source: Wikimedia/Gage Skidmore / Wikimedia/Shealah Craighead

The data revealed that Biden, as a candidate, accepted far more money from corporate donors and the wealthy than Trump ever did. At the same time, Trump accepted more donations from small ticket donors – donations of $200 or less – than Biden, drawing a clear difference between the two candidates and who supports them.

A New America

In his blog post, Kudlow explains that this clear differentiation in funding sources paints a picture of a new America. The corporate and educated elites, versus the populists and the middle class. Kudlow theorized, along with Larry Lindsay, that the economic elites are revealing themselves to be Democrats, and the working class are Republicans.

Source: Wikimedia/Gage Skidmore

He then went on to explain that the second-guessing around Nikki Haley’s candidacy and primary losses is the big reason that he brings these points up. Many mainstream Republicans have been spooked by how well Nikki Haley has been doing in the primaries, despite the fact that she hasn’t won a significant number of electors.

A Political Realignment Ahead

Kudlow is less concerned about these numbers. He explains that, while he is confident that Trump can perform admirably among Nikki Haley supporters, the issue of Trump’s candidacy is bigger than a simple race between competitors.

Source: Wikimedia/The White House

The fact is that Trump’s policies, which Kudlow lists as a middle-class affordable economy, closing the border, restoring law and order, peace through strength, and respect abroad, seem to be leading to a realignment in politics that will become more apparent over time.

Explaining Political Realignments

Political realignments, historically speaking, are periods of time where a drastic shift can be seen between the attitudes of before, and the attitudes that come after. An example of this is the change that was seen during FDR’s presidency, with the shift into New Deal liberalism and modern conservatism from the Populist and Progressive Eras.

Source: Wikimedia/Harris and Ewing

Political alignments can be quick, or slow, but typically are centered around major historical events or periods. FDR saw the rise of WWII and the Great Depression, which led to some of the policies that can be seen in the political realignment of the 30’s.

A Slower, More Lasting Adjustment

Kudlow theorizes that the current shift that can be seen around Trump is a slower change that has been in the works for several years. He points out that Biden’s perceived repeated failures and woke extremism of the current progressive party are working in tandem to alienate different voters that have typically voted very liberal.

Source: Wikimedia/Ali Shaker

These demographics include Black Americans, hispanics, and Asian Americans. But in addition to the expected Trump base of farmer’s truckers, entrepreneurs, and mechanics, Trump also appears to be slowly overtaking young voters with his policies and attitudes towards the political elite.

An Indictment on the Current Political System

Kudlow paints this attitude as “Trump tough.” He believes the shift that Americans are seeing is due to the perception of Trump as a disrupter to the current political system, which many perceive as corrupt and no longer working.

Source: Wikimedia/Gage Skidmore

Kudlow concludes his blog by stating that the “Trump realignment” is sneaking up on Americans, and that it’s going to be a drastic shift that pundits and pollsters should not ignore. The implication in his words, of course, is that average Americans shouldn’t discount or ignore this potential realignment either, especially ahead of the 2024 general election.

Lasting Change? Who Knows

Whether there is truly a political realignment in the works is uncertain, and it’s generally something that is determined by historians rather than contemporaries. For those who believe in political realignments at all, the 2024 election could end up being a turning point.

Source: Wikimedia/Gage Skidmore

Ultimately, though, Trump is one man. Kudlow might see him as the figurehead of a new political realignment, but the real story will be seen if the shift in political opinion lasts beyond the Trump era. Only time will tell, and historians and commentators are watching closely.