Dem 51
image description
GOP 49
image description

How to Make Trump Go Away

Frank Luntz is a Republican pollster and strategist who is not a big fan of Donald Trump. He recently held dozens of focus groups with Trump supporters to find out what makes them tick and why they love their hero so much. He also tried to figure out how some other Republican could peel some of them away from Trump. He learned some interesting things.

First of all, attacking Trump DOES. NOT. WORK. Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) tried that in 2016. It didn't work then and it won't work now. Forget it. Very briefly, what a Trump opponent needs to do is give the Trump voters the impression that while Trump cared about them in 2016, now all he cares about is himself. The new candidate has to show that he has listened to the base and is focused on what they want, not what he personally wants. That's the key. Here are some more conclusions from the many focus groups:

Among current challengers, none of them are even coming close to doing any of these things. No one has come out and said: "Trump had good ideas, but he has forgotten his supporters and now thinks only about himself. And he acts like a buffoon. I will carry out your agenda but I won't embarrass you while doing so." (V)

This item appeared on Read it Monday through Friday for political and election news, Saturday for answers to reader's questions, and Sunday for letters from readers.                     State polls                     All Senate candidates