Cue the confetti cannon…
Today during a rally at Trump Tower in New York City, Trump became the 2,347th Republican to declare candidiacy in the 2016 primary. Via ABC News:
“We are going to make our country great again,” Trump, who turned 69 on Saturday, declared.
He added, “I will be the greatest jobs president that God ever created.”
In 2012, Trump launched a Presidential exploratory committee and visited key battleground states before bowing out in May 2011. This time though, Trump says he’s in it for the long haul; he plans to step away from the day to day management of The Trump Organization, and hand the reigns over to his children: Ivanka, Donald Jr, and Eric. He has also chosen to step aside from his hit reality show, “The Apprentice.”
“They all said, a lot of the pundits on television, well, Donald will never run, and one of the main reasons is he’s private and he’s probably not as successful as everybody thinks,” said Trump, who has never held public office before. “So I said to myself, you know, nobody is ever going to know unless I run because I’m really proud of my success.”
Video via TMZ (who I’m assuming is excited for the sheer amount of content they’re about to encounter):
Of course, the media has jumped on the opportunity to shine light on the dollar signs floating around this campaign. Trump’s net worth jumped to the forefront of every article I read about his announcement. Via CNN:
The 68-story tower venue Trump used Tuesday is more than just the backdrop to Trump’s presidential announcement, instead becoming a physical embodiment of what Trump is bringing to the table and the challenges he’ll face as he formally entered politics.
Trump has already billed himself as the “most successful person ever to run for the presidency, by far,” pointing out even that he owns a “Gucci store that’s worth more than Romney.”
That Gucci store won’t be far as Trump makes his announcement — it’s located in the lobby of the Trump Tower.
But in his run, Trump isn’t likely to try and shy away from the out-of-reach luxury and opulence that makes up his day-to-day lifestyle.
Instead, he flaunted his wealth and success in business as a centerpiece of his presidential platform in his speech. And on Tuesday he disclosed his financial assets, trumpeting a whopping $9 billion net worth. Trump’s net worth was previously estimated at roughly $4 billion.
I think that most strategists would agree that a candidate who flaunts his wealth in the way that Trump has could prove problematic with the voting base. That being said—at this point, why not try it? Democrats have used the income disparity argument to nail Republican presidential candidates to the wall for years; is there really any point in trying to make someone like Donald Trump look like Joe America on his riding lawnmower?
Trump’s lifestyle is out of the reach of not just most Americans, but most people on the planet. That’s reality, and I think most people accept that. I may not understand what it feels like to own a yacht (anyone have a yacht I can borrow to test this?) but I do understand what it feels like to earn enough money to make a major purchase, or treat myself to a luxury item. Why shouldn’t he be proud of his towers in the same way I’m proud of the things I’ve earned? Pitching scale is difficult, but the fact that he doesn’t seem prepared to hide behind rolled up sleeves and moderately-priced-yet-tasteful home furnishings could help.
That could be the key to humanizing Trump. We already know Trump the Billionaire Mogul and Trump the Reality TV star; as a wonk, I’m interested to see how his campaign plans on introducing Trump the Man to the American people.DONATE
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