, MANCHESTER, United States, Feb 10 – Donald Trump is a billionaire real estate tycoon with bravado to spare, a former reality television star who says winning is everything.
The unlikely Republican presidential frontrunner now can claim his first victory in the political arena after notching up a win in the New Hampshire primary on Tuesday – to the horror of the political establishment.
The 69-year-old New Yorker has upended the 2016 presidential election by casting a spell over grassroots conservatives and not shying away from talking tough.
To his fans, he is the definition of American success, the cut-throat tycoon who can magically fix all that’s wrong with a country no longer sure of its place in the world, and home to an increasingly frustrated white working and middle class.
To his critics, he is a racist demagogue or, at best, a buffoon with an orange perma-tan and an odd helmet of hair who would either hand Hillary Clinton the White House – or lead the world into unmitigated catastrophe.
What is clear is that Trump isn’t really interested in following the traditional political playbook.
He insults women, Mexicans, Muslims – virtually everyone who crosses his path and yet his say-it-how-it-is honesty, defiance of political correctness and disdain for the political class has struck a chord matched by almost no other candidate.
He promises to build a wall on the Mexican border, deport millions of illegal immigrants and stand up to China to “Make America Great Again.”
He also plays fast and loose with statistics, and has never unveiled detailed policies.
He jets from rally to rally in his Boeing 757 like a rock star, and sucks up roughly as much TV coverage as the other candidates combined, saving him tens of millions of dollars in paid advertising.
The big question is: Can he translate his poll numbers into votes? He’s now lost in Iowa and won in New Hampshire. What happens when the campaign shifts to South Carolina, Nevada and on along the long road to the November election?