The New York Post reports that the publicity-hungry real-estate mogul and Republican Donald Trump has spent more than $1 million on "electoral research" for a possible presidential run in 2016. Trump, who flirted with running for president back in 2012, is apparently being increasingly asked to speak at Republican events and reportedly commented at the recent Oakland County Republican Party Lincoln Day Dinner in Michigan that "Everybody tells me, 'Please run for president. Please run for president.'"
Michael Cohen, executive vice president and special counsel to Trump, said that "We did not spend $1 million on this research for it just to sit on my bookshelf. At this point Mr. Trump has not made any decision on a political run, but what I would say is that he is exactly what this country needs. The turnout at these political speeches indicates his following remains very strong and is growing." Recently, however, Trump said that it was "highly unlikely" that he would run in 2016.
Trump, who took the racist ridiculousness that is the birther movement to new heights (or lows) by offering $5 million to see Obama's birth records, stands no actual chance of winning the presidential race if he entered, or even becoming the Republican nominee. But while the $1 million was little more than a waste of money aimed at generating publicity, it should worry the Republican Party. Trump highlights some of the more ridiculous things that some Republican supporters cling to, such as the birther movement. Ultimately, as Jim Geraghty of the National Review tweeted back in 2012, "If at any point you seriously considered Donald Trump for president, please study the error of your ways in quiet, private contemplation." Republicans will likely be hoping people do the same thing now and ignore the buffoonish distraction that is Donald Trump.