The primary season is drawing to a close, and battle lines are already being drawn, but not in the typical places. This election season, however, has been anything but typical. As Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump emerge from their respective packs, each is starting to look across the aisle to the general election just over the horizon. And though both candidates have had their general appeal questioned, many are wondering whether the Trump phenomenon is applicable to the general electorate, whether the anti-establishment sentiment will carry over as Trump prepares to face off against the most establishment candidate in the field.
It may seem odd to see such a pairing of candidates. On one hand, we have the most established namesake in politics with way more star power than Jeb Bush, and on the other, a very established namesake in its own right, but in many ways the most radical, anti-establishment candidate in the field. Clinton is very cautious and measured. Trump is reckless and larger than life. But primary candidates are always exaggerations of their presidential campaigns. Language is always more inflammatory, and the line in the sand is much more pronounced.
But when the general election is all that’s left, will Trump continue in the same persona that so impacted the primaries? The evidence so far says, “eh, maybe not?” In recent weeks, and especially since the capitulation of Ted Cruz and John Kasich, Trump has softened ever so slightly between outrageous sound bites. But how far will Trump need to bend in order to appeal to the general electorate, and will doing so hurt his reputation with those so zealously propelling his candidacy forward?
Knowing Trump, there’s really no way to know anything. Should he soften it up in an attempt to appeal to anti-Hillary moderate Dems? Of course. Will he? Probably, at some point at least. But the big question is whether Trump can rebrand his image just enough to get the win? Only time will tell. Raise The Money will be there, helping both sides keep the coffers full and watching the game unfold. There is one certainty this election season. This will be a presidential election to remember.