A lot of people have that theory. And of course he did better than expected, which was great for marketing and then people started effusively praising him which was great for his ego.
But now he’s the presumptive Republican candidate and he has a problem. In the general election, he will either a) lose and become a “loser” like Romney and Bob Dole and that loser John McCain who allowed himself to be captured during war; or b) become president, a position that must look more daunting and hard to wrap your head around the closer you get to it.
Yes, I think Trump still doesn’t actually want to be president. I mean, I’m sure he’d like to be president the way I would: be president for a day, with a congress that goes along with everything I say, pass three laws of meaning to me and then step down. But four years of actual presidency? And Trump doesn’t like the GOP establishment, the kind of people who could actually supply him with cabinet secretaries and advisors to actually help him.
So here’s the theory as of today. Trump doesn’t want to be president and he’s purposefully flaming out to try to avoid becoming the GOP candidate. Thus the remarks about impartial judges recently. He’s trying to get fired before the GOP convention.
Here’s another theory: if Trump is the GOP candidate, he will not win, but there could be a lot of trouble for Democrats in the near future.
I know that people say that Trump would motivate a Democratic base to vote down ballot for senators and representatives, but the other part of this is the GOP money machine. If Trump is the candidate, the Kochs and others will fund the billions of dollars they had ear-marked for this year into races for state houses and mayors and city councils. Those races don’t make the news and people will be much more easily swayed by advertising dollars.
The problem then is that there will be incumbents leading up to 2020 and the next census. Then those state houses will redraw congressional districts and make more safe GOP seats meaning more extreme candidates from the right.
So, for the record, those are my theories of the moment. I hope some of them are wrong.