Donald Trump had only been in the presidential race for weeks, but when he famously accused Arizona Sen. John McCain, a prisoner of war during Vietnam, of not being heroic, commentators predicted his time as a frontrunner would soon be over.
“Apologize for this pronto,” Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol tweeted. “Otherwise beginning of end.”
— Bill Kristol (@BillKristol) July 18, 2015
Likewise, Jonah Goldberg of National Review predicted “it’s nonetheless obvious that we will someday soon look back on this as the beginning of the end of Trumpmania.”
But as we all know now, that didn’t happen: Trump is still the undisputed frontrunner for the Republican nomination with less than 70 days before voters in Iowa head to the caucuses.
Since he entered the race in June, there have been numerous examples of Trump provoking a media firestorm by saying something provocative. Time and time again, despite the breathless coverage in the media of these remarks and predictions that he may have done significant damage to his campaign, Trump has survived.