Donald Trump thrashed his Republican rivals so completely in Nevada's caucus that he won about as many votes as Marc Rubio, Ted Cruz and John Kasich combined. For Republicans hoping it would all go away, the knowledge that even a "consensus candidate" can't prevail is dawning.
At The Guardian, Jeb Lund explains that Trump's victories aren't mysterious if you understand why people are angry, which very few people in politics or the media appreciate, even now.
But you don't need some grand overarching political science theory. There are millions of miserable people in America who know exactly who engineered the shattering of their worlds, and Trump isn't one of those people – and, with the exception of Bernie Sanders, everyone else in the field is running on the basis of their experience being one of those people.
When you are abused and bullied enough, anyone willing to beat up or burn down whomever put you in that position is your friend. Even a bully can be a hero if he targets others bullies – and that is, more or less, what Trump has done since day one.
At The Federalist, though, Mollie Hemingway blames the media for enabling him and for embracing his awful talking points.
They're complicit. You can't cry "dangerous and outrageous" with this type of cross-network coverage that other candidates would pay millions of dollars to have. Every day is a test for the media and Trump. And every day they fail, and he succeeds wildly. … It's not that candidates should get equal time, but let's not pretend that there was any sense of proportion to the Trump media circus this past year. Trump is a smart campaigner, exploiting each and every weakness in American media for his gain. And his supporters are happy to have him. He's earned his success. But I'll be darned if the media want to pretend they didn't play a huge role in his easy path to the nomination.
In any case, conservatives know that whatever the truth of Trump is, they are going to be blamed for it.