Donald Trump Pledge: How GOP Frontrunner Keeps Playing Media For Fools

The Donald Trump pledge dominated much of Twitter on Saturday night after a rally in Florida saw the GOP frontrunner leading his supporters in a “raise your right hands”-styled chant vowing allegiance to vote for him in the upcoming primary.

Predictably, users on Twitter drew comparisons to the “heil Hitler” salute from Nazi Germany, a comparison that parallels other opinions of Trump from Louis CK on up.

The media was only too happy to report on the incident as if Twitter was destroying Donald and his supporters without any thought to the fact that they were doing exactly what their targets wanted.

By now, the narrative that Donald Trump is an idiot is played out. A person could not play the media as well as he does and bounce back from every single criticism and attack to command the lead that Trump has and be stupid.

An “idiot” could also not get as many votes as the Donald has while spending the least amount of money. Last night’s “Donald Trump pledge” was just another in a long line of behaviors created specifically for the media.

Trump understands that there is no such thing as bad publicity, especially when running a populist campaign that tends to cross over party lines. He is not wrong when he says that he is driving turnout at the polls, and that he is bringing Democrats and Independents to the Republican party.

Establishment Republicans are showing up with a hope of unseating Trump from his frontrunner position, while Independents and a surprising number of Democrats are casting their votes for the Donald along with those on the far right of the tea party. When the dust settles, most of these people — even the ones who oppose him — are likely to get behind his campaign.

For establishment Republicans, it is a deep-seated hatred for Hillary Clinton.

Meanwhile, Trump’s flip-flops have helped him to appeal to the hopes on both sides. His liberal supporters see him as a faux conservative, who is saying what he needs to to get elected. They believe he will govern more moderately based on previous positions.

Many Independents share this viewpoint. Meanwhile, the tea party side is hoping they can take Trump’s promises of building walls and military power at face value. The contradictions make for nice media fodder as reporters and pundits believe they have more pull than they really do.

According to Gallup, media distrust is higher than it’s ever been, so Trump can pretty much say whatever he wants and whenever the media picks it up and takes a position opposing him, they further his message while feeding into his frequent accusations of their dishonesty. Trump supporters eat it up, and with the “Donald Trump pledge” they’re helping their candidate of choice get the reaction he wants.

See, Trump needs more than the attention. He needs the media’s opposition. Whenever he gets it, it plays into the narrative he has established. It also helps rile up the people most likely to vote for Trump — voters, who have either never taken part in a presidential election, who are disenfranchised with the establishments on both sides, or who haven’t voted in a very long time for whatever reason.

Here’s an example that should make liberals against Trump terrified of his general election potential courtesy of the The Guardian.

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The Donald Trump pledge last night was a joke that everyone from Trump to his supporters are in on, because they understand when the media goes after Trump, his message only grows in its reach, and that expands the possibility that more non-political types will show up in November to boost him against Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders.

Do you think the Donald Trump pledge is cause for concern, a carefully crafted troll of the media, or completely harmless? Sound off in the comments section.

[Image via Flickr Creative Commons/Matt Johnson]