Is Donald Trump a Political Buffoon? My response to this Quora question

Quora has been an interesting experience for me. On one hand, I love the fact that I can help answer questions and also ask questions that people may be thinking about but haven’t asked yet. I had been disgruntled by some of the downvoting that may not be entirely based on quality and some of the Quora policies regarding answers and questions, but overall it’s an amazing social tool that can allow experts demonstrate their expertise and help knowledge seekers find quality answers. It’s also more likely to provide solid information than answers or comments on other social networks such as Twitter and FaceBook that are afflicted by trolling.

I had found this question entitled “Is Donald Trump a Political Buffoon”, a clearly subjective question but not as subjective as some others that I’ve found on the site. While, I’m slightly disgruntled that questions like these are more less likely to be down voted then those for more liberal subjects, I still found this question to be a solid one to answer because Trump’s rhetoric and candidacy is certainly well debated and discussed in regards to how presidential it is.

Here was my response to this question:

No, if anything he has been more of a political enigma. Since the beginning, he has been laughed off as a joke. The Huffington post even said that they weren’t going to feature him in the politics section but rather the entertainment section, and he has been basically the subject of parody by comedy and even professional media outlets. Yet, despite all of that, he has had massive turnout at his rallies and at the primaries as well as in terms of newly registered voters or seldom participating voters turn out to support him and has clenched the Republican nomination for president.

Donald Trump has been portrayed as a buffoon and his rhetoric and comments have garnered him criticism as well as a ton of media coverage and he used it as coverage to keep the attention of him. Trump is a master brander and knows how to keep a show focused on him and he is far from a buffoon. You don’t get to where he is by simply being a buffoon. The Bush campaign used over 110 million dollars and couldn’t touch Trump in terms of response and he battled opposition of experienced politicians and the political party itself. Nobody thought he would get to where he is and he used all of that to his advantage.

I find that many are amazed that Trump who literally is the definition of an outsider candidate just Trumped the opposition especially since the game was not in his favor. However, he capitalized on the tension and dissension between the people and the party and he got them on his side simply because he was different. The economy appears to be solid, but many are without work or underemployed and I’d argue that we actually aren’t nearly as stable as we seem and people don’t feel like their representatives have their best interests. They have every right to feel that way and President Obama didn’t help with some of is rhetoric directed at those that opposed him either. In fact, people are more politically divided now than ever and Trump capitalized on this and got people on his side.

I definitely don’t agree with most of the rhetoric that he has said, but I appreciate what he has done since it is a refreshing change from the election that most were probably expecting. He picked his spot and he went all in and now he has clenched the nomination. Will he be president? We’ll find out this November. However, it’s clear that he is far from a buffoon that people make him out to be and he has been able to control the conversation about the election. Think about the last time an outsider candidate truly made this much of an impact and then you’ll realize that people will be talking about Trump’s rise for many years and in many political science studies that will come.


I thought that this answer would get many comments and I was certainly right, but I’m happy to say that they were very positive. Many agreed that Donald Trump indeed has been very far from a buffoon in the way that he has kept the attention on him during his entire campaign and the way he has debated the other candidates and utilized bombastic rhetoric to get his message across. Those providing comments and I both agreed that while we not necessarily liked Trump, that he has done an incredible job by getting to where he is today in the campaign. Trump’s success is also groundbreaking to common belief that one needs to be in public service or in the political system in order to be taken seriously for higher office. This theory and just common knowledge has been taught to me in every class and even by those who are working in politics and I met many of them while in Tallahassee, but Trump has literally broken this theory and done what many thought wasn’t possible. It takes someone truly unique in order to do this.

Now, I know that some may say that he has donated to political candidates and this is true. However, it doesn’t necessarily mean that he was a total political insider. In fact, he used the money that he had donated as a means of attacking candidates accusing him of being an insider by openly stating that he gave his criticizers money and turned the tables on them. He immediately destroyed their argument. It was also fun to see Trump pulling back the curtain on the political system and just how dysfunctional and bureaucratic the political party system is when it comes to supporting candidates.

I’m not sure if I’m completely behind Trump or any candidate this election season, but it’s certainly interesting and quite amazing to see his rise and just how he has been able to get such an audience behind him. He has beaten the odds as well as the political system itself so far and I think his candidacy will be discussed for many years to come in political science fields. Either way, this has been an election season for the ages and I’m glad to see more people engaged now than before.

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