Donald Trump is not going to be anyone’s nominee for president of the United States. He almost certainly isn’t going to mount a real campaign for president of the United States. He probably won’t do anything that constitutes a “run” — getting on ballots, showing up for debates, that sort of thing.
So why is Robert Costa, a normally excellent reporter, running an item giving us all sorts of Trump-supplied details of how he’s really, really, extra-really serious that he’s absolutely (maybe) going to run this time?
C’mon, folks: Let’s please not fall for this nonsense this time. As Seth Michaels says: “Donald Trump is a hustler by nature and understands that being a right-wing media personality is a great hustle” (see also Steve Kornacki, from the last time this farce went on).
Or to put it another way: Celebrities like publicity, and some of them figure out that they can get some by faking a presidential campaign. Don’t indulge them! Or if you do, give them mostly ridicule. Don’t treat them as serious candidates, because that just encourages them, and sooner or later we’ll have Trump or someone else figure out how to keep it going through the early debates, or even the early primaries. Which is, in fact, a potential hassle for the parties, who actually want to use their nomination process for the important things that parties need to do.
So, really, reporters: don’t be fooled into taking Trump, or any others who come around — yes, I remember the “Warren Beatty is going to run for president” rumors — seriously. Even a little bit.