SOUTH CAROLINA has spoken, and what it had to say wasn’t pretty. Donald Trump won by about ten percentage points, repeating his success in New Hampshire. His victory speech was a familiar, gleeful rant about how “Mexico is killing us”, and about the wall along the southern border that the Mexican government will obligingly pay for once he is elected. There is a risk of becoming desensitised to Mr Trump because he has been saying the same stuff for months. This victory speech, though, had something new. Mr Trump called for a big win in Nevada in a week’s time and then again on Super Tuesday (March 1st). “Let’s put this thing away,” he added. For once this did not sound particularly boastful, which is worrying for the Republican Party and for the country.
In one sense the party’s mainstream wing, the bit that occupies 34 governors’ mansions and has majorities in both houses of Congress, got what it wanted from South Carolina. Before the primary, the best hope for stopping Mr Trump or Ted Cruz was as follows: John Kasich and Jeb Bush drop out, allowing Marco Rubio to...Continue reading