When the delegates were finished calling out the votes on Tuesday night, it finally became official. After one of the most improbable years in American political history, Donald Trump was the Republican Party’s nominee for president of the United States.
“Such a great honor to be the Republican nominee for President of the United States,” said Trump on Twitter. “I will work hard and never let you down! AMERICA FIRST!”
For Trump’s supporters, this was a day that seemed it would never come. The billionaire had to survive a year’s worth of unprecedented media scrutiny, extraordinary hostility from the Republican establishment, controversy after controversy, and a collection of formidable primary challengers. Even when it was clear that he was the people’s choice this spring, a brokered convention seemed all but inevitable.
By the time we got to Cleveland this week, however, all of the significant obstacles had fallen by the wayside. Trump had weathered the storm, pulling off a feat that very few pundits predicted he would a year ago. Now, with the nomination in his grasp, Trump will have to conquer one last foe: Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.
Once again, the odds are apparently stacked against him. The media – still trying to create a narrative rather than report the truth – says he has almost no shot at beating her in November. He’ll fail with minorities, they say. He’ll be crushed in the debates, they insist. If nothing else, he’ll hang himself with his own loose tongue.
And yes, to pull off a win this November, Trump is going to have to overcome a sea of opposition.
But if we’ve learned anything on the road to Cleveland, it’s that we should never underestimate the billionaire from New York.