Donald Trump’s pattern of making increasingly crude, prejudiced and sexist rants at campaign events continues to draw supporters to the bafflement of Republican Party officials and political analysts alike.
"Never seen anything like it," Bloomberg Politics' Mark Halperin admitted Tuesday in an interview with TODAY's Matt Lauer.
During a campaign rally Monday night, the Republican presidential front-runner attacked Democratic rival Hillary Clinton using a vulgar term to describe her defeat in the 2008 White House race. He also told his supporters that while he holds a deep hate for journalists, “I would never kill them.”
Halperin said such banter has not cost him any support so far.
"This country needs a high-minded debate. This is not, but in terms of just pure politics, is this going to hurt him with the people currently supporting him? Every Trump supporter I’ve talked to, even when he says crude things or outlandish things says, 'You know, we’ll take that along with the things we like about him,'" Halperin explained.
But Halperin admitted that Trump's message is becoming a “nightmare” for GOP leaders eyeing the first elections coming up in Iowa and New Hampshire.
“This shows more clearly than ever that Trump can dominate every day between now and the beginning of the voting, and he’s got a lead,” Halperin said.“Long term, this is not the image the Republican Party wants to have."
Halperin also cast doubt on whether "this version of Donald Trump” will be as electable as other sides the candidate as shown as the nation draws closer to early primary and caucus elections.