Not unpopular enough

Americans prefer root canals to The Donald, but they’ll still support him for president

Donald Trump is less popular than head lice. And root canals. And traffic jams, used-car salesmen and jury duty. But good news, Republicans, he’s more popular than cockroaches and hemorrhoids! (Among men, anyway.)

These aren’t jokes from late-night hosts, but rather actual results from a legitimate pollster. PPP (Public Policy Polling) asked voters about their preferences and their views on the remaining candidates; on Trump, the unfavorability is astounding.

Great news for Democrats and everyone else who’s #NeverTrump, right?

Not so fast. The GOP has a loathsome figurehead, seemingly destined to lose the White House and torpedo down-ticket races in November, yet he’s getting embraced more than shunned.

The same poll shows nearly three out of every four Republicans are comfortable with Trump as their nominee. Primary opponents who lambasted him as an irresponsible loose cannon now make the rounds touting him. House Speaker Paul Ryan, slated to meet Trump today (May 12), drew fire for taking the oh-so-cautious stance of being “not ready” to endorse.

So much for a schism—if Nero is fiddling, Republicans don’t hear it; neither the leadership nor the rank-and-file voters see a party burning to the ground.

Obviously, we’re concerned about the ramifications for November. This presidential election already carried extra significance with the balance of the Supreme Court at stake. Now there’s the prospect of an erratic egomaniac making that and myriad other decisions with life-and-death consequences.

What’s just as disconcerting is the collective shrug of acquiescence from supposed people of conscience.

Trump hasn’t undergone a radical change. He may say he’ll become “more presidential” and that he’s been playing a character on the campaign trail; so far, there’s no evidence he’ll recant the xenophobia, sexism, etc.

Yes, Trump is unpopular—just not unpopular enough.