The NYT suggests that Donald Trump is just pretending to run for president to keep himself in the public eye and jack up the ratings on his reality show. Trump’s previous flirtations with running for president likely had similar motivations, but none garnered quite as much attention as this one. Meanwhile, Mike Huckabee won a straw poll in South Carolina and continues to lead the Republican field in many polls, but it seems unlikely that he will run.
Has this kind of thing happened before, where (1) someone who leads in the polls and has run before chooses not to run and (2) some candidates are in the race just to make money for themselves? On (1), people like Cuomo and Colin Powell don’t count because they hadn’t run before.
This Republican race feels different to me than anything I have seen before. The line between politics and reality tv seems blurred in a way that is new. Is it new or has this always been going and I just hadn’t noticed it?