For Donald Trump, losing the Iowa primary election meant the end of his presidential ambitions. Though he led the polls by about 10 points, Trump came in second, beating Rubio by just 1% and losing to senator Ted Cruz. For any other candidate, second place in the first primary would mean they have a good chance to win the nomination. But that’s because no other candidate has ever failed to fulfill their primary campaign promise before actually becoming president.
“I’m a winner. And anything besides winning is just a big, fat, beautiful waste of time.”
– Donald Trump
“Too many people don’t care about winning today. I call those people losers…We will have so much winning in America when I’m elected that you will get bored of winning.”
The campaign message was basically “I always win. Vote for me if you want a winner, or don’t because I’ll win anyway.” With Trump leading all the polls, many Republicans thought that he’s their best chance of finally getting Democrats out of the White House. Without that “angle”, the billionaire would have to build an actual political platform from the ground up and it’s far too late for that now. So, for him, losing this battle does mean losing the war.
The Calm Before The Storm
Of course, most experts predicted his downfall from the start. The only surprise was the unusually well-mannered and calm speech Trump gave in Iowa after the election. He thanked his supporters, expressed strong confidence in winning the Republican nomination and even congratulated Cruz on the victory. His writers obviously advised him on how to be clever, elegant and optimistic but Trump decided to be himself instead, by throwing a huge fit just two days later.
A Presidential Case of Denial
The billionaire showed just how bitter he was with a series of Tweets. In true toddler-like fashion, Trump refused to admit defeat by saying his opponent cheated. With just 840 characters (6 Tweets) he lost any remaining chance of winning the Republican nomination. Sure, a lot of Trump’s supporters are really loyal but being such a sore loser may cost him even more votes then the actual loss.
First off, even Ben Carson wasn’t that upset about the press release. It was written by one of Cruz’s team members and released mid-election, after most Iowans already cast their votes. The senator has publicly apologized about the incident. Plus, there’s no reason why most of Carson’s supporters would vote for Cruz. As for the ‘Voter Violation’ mailers – no one denies that this was an underhanded move but it definitely doesn’t classify as fraud. In fact, many Republican candidates sent out the exact same mailers in past elections. They are designed to get infrequent voters to the polls.
The last accusation was, at the very least, misleading – Cruz has actually never said “Trump favors ObamaCare and is pro-choice”. And, even if he had, no one would believe him because Trump clearly doesn’t support Obama or women.
In conclusion, he basically offered to have a rematch so all the results are fraud-free, or to keep the “fraudulent” results but disqualify the guy who beat him. Either he thinks most Republicans are stupid enough to believe him or Donald Trump has graduated from a state of denial to full-fledged delusion.