‘Politics Has Become Celebrity-Driven’: How 2016 Surprised Political Thinkers

“Even more surprising was the way Trump weaved national security into his messaging on race, ethnicity, and identity. It was a surprising messaging package because of its explicit nature. I would have expected to see this played with much more subtlety. I was also shocked that so many people thought this kind of rhetoric was acceptable — even if they hold the same attitudes. I was also a bit surprised that elites within the Republican Party didn’t coordinate around one of the other candidates with enough time to keep Trump from the nomination.”

— Lynn Vavreck, professor of political science and communications at UCLA and co-author of The Gamble