Throughout the 2016 primary season, two sentiments took turns reassuring Republicans as they watched Donald Trump’s strange ascent:
At some point, Trump will start behaving normally.
If he doesn’t, he’ll self-destruct or quit — or else somebody in authority will figure out a way to jettison him.
It isn’t surprising that people once believed these things; I clung to the second sentiment myself.
What is surprising is that after everything that’s happened, so many people believe them even now.
Ross Douthat, “Donald Trump Does Not Surprise”, The New York Times (14 May 2017), SR9.