Donald Trump toured the Texas-Mexico border on Thursday to condemn illegal immigration, declare his love for Latinos and to belittle rival White House candidate Hillary Clinton…

“I employ thousands and thousands of Hispanics,” he said. “I love the people. They’re great workers. They’re fantastic people and they want legal immigration.”

He said he had been “surprised” by how warmly he was received despite spending barely two hours on the ground. Laredo officials appeared delighted to have a celebrity in their midst.

“It’s a pleasure,” said Laredo mayor Pete Saenz. “The excitement that he brings is also very on the plus side for our city.”

Today, Donald J. Trump, announced the formation of the “Veterans for Trump” Coalition in New Hampshire. These veterans have pledged their support to Mr. Trump in the primary, and they will be advocating for him among other veterans and military families in New Hampshire, where there continues to be overwhelming support for Mr. Trump…

Dan Tamburello of the Marine Corps said, “I believe that Donald Trump has the leadership, the will, the courage, and the unabashed love-of country Americans so desperately crave in the White House. We have some very serious issues facing this country that are going to take a steely-eyed, proven, tough leader to overcome. Furthermore, should Mr. Trump find his way into the White House, he won’t owe anything to anyone except the American people. Mr. Trump is a Patriot who loves his country, the American people, and cares about America being respected and great again. I believe he has what it takes to restore the faith of America’s allies and be respected by our enemies once more.”

The Huffington Post worked with our survey partner YouGov to scour its Internet survey panel for activist Republicans: those who have run for or held office, served as party officials, worked on campaigns, or volunteered their time before elections. Our survey of 500 of these activists provides a look at the opinions of some of the GOP’s best-informed and most politically involved supporters. (We also sampled Democratic activists and will report on those findings separately.)…

By some measures, Donald Trump’s standing among the activists resembles his current spike among Republican identifiers in national primary polls. He is reasonably well-liked: 59 percent have a positive opinion of him.

Still, Trump attracts considerably more backlash than most other candidates, joining Bush, Graham and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie among the candidates that more than 1 in 4 activists say they’d never vote for and that they’d be angry to see nominated. He’s also widely seen as a weak candidate, with little more than a quarter saying either that he’s capable of winning the GOP nomination or that he’d have a shot at the presidency — and all this came before Trump’s now well-publicized comments about Sen. John McCain.

Trump’s numbers are also consistently worse among the activists we have classified as “semi-pro” — those who say they have held or sought elective office, served as a party official or been a paid staffer for a campaign or public official — than among those who have been only volunteers or donors.  Trump’s favorable rating is 20 points lower among the semi-pro activists (48 percent) than among those who have only volunteered or donated (68 percent). More than a third (38 percent) of the semi-pros say they could never support Trump compared to just 19 percent among the volunteers.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump stated, “I’ve evolved on a lot of different things” and that as a businessman he wasn’t asked questions about his political positions in an interview broadcast on Wednesday’s “AC 360″ on CNN.

After host Anderson Cooper said that he thinks other candidates will accuse Trump of flip-flopping, Trump said, “Well, you know who else flip-flopped? A man named, my favorite, Ronald Reagan. He was a Democrat. He became a Republican.”

Cooper then stated that Trump was “pro-choice.” Trump maintained that he stated he hated “the concept of abortion.”

The quickest of Google searches shows that Trump was for abortion until he was against it, and then just barely.

On NBC’s Meet the Press in 1999, Trump told Tim Russert that while he “cringe[s] to hear people debating the subject” of partial birth abortion he “still just believes in choice.” Eleven years later when eyeing the White House for the first time, Trump suddenly changed his mind, saying he is and has been “pro-life.” How to explain the change? “As I’ve grown older, I’ve changed my views.” That’s great and all, but most people at least try to come up with a valid rationale for those changes.
The Art of Political Opportunism 

This election cycle, Trump’s views on abortion have come full-term. Some will give him a pass, arguing that he has matured in his views like Ronald Reagan once did. But Reagan wrote an entire book, making a reasoned case for his new belief. Trump just gave some rambling interviews…

For the last two decades, Donald Trump has supported the most extreme of abortion advocates. His moral trepidation didn’t stop him from bankrolling high profile pro-choice Democrats like Hillary Clinton, Harry Reid, and Chuck Schumer. Donald didn’t feel squeamish about partial birth abortion or embryonic stem cell research when he signed their checks. Those politicians have dedicated their careers to the defense of abortion—and at least they’re consistent and honest about it.

Well, I’m not voting for Donald Trump in the Georgia primary. I don’t think he’ll even be in the race by that point. But I would support him were he the nominee. That the establishment guys won’t is deeply hilarious to watch after years of them lecturing all of us about not taking our football home. The meltdown is delightful to watch and after years of putting up with pompous, preening members of the Establishment telling conservatives they have to suck it up, it is wonderful to be reminded that the Establishment is incapable of sucking it up.

If they just waited, Trump would fade. But everything they do generates new attention for Trump and emboldens him and his supporters. They just do not know what to do with Trump and the truth is that they set up the system Trump is benefiting from. The Establishment expects the conservative base to stay quiet when we disagree with them, but by God they want to scream the rooftops when they disagree with us. We’re hobbits, cave dwellers, crazies, etc.

There’s also something else that needs to be said here: Trump won’t be the Republican nominee. And those who are on his team in the primary may very well sit it out. There should be no crying in primaries, as in baseball. If I don’t get my guy, I still support the nominee (except John Kasich who has less of a chance than Trump so it doesn’t matter). Those of you who’ve made Trump your cause are really doing so because he is throwing punches you think need to be thrown. Just don’t delude yourself. Donald Trump is ultimately about Donald Trump. He was for immigration and universal healthcare and Hillary Clinton before he was against them. He’s saying a lot of awesome stuff, but there is no guarantee he won’t change. Don’t let your hatred of the Establishment and feeling that you’ve been played get you played again by someone who only a few years ago was on CNN identifying as a Democrat.

The biggest applause lines in Trump’s July 11 speech at FreedomFest were not the anguished anecdotes about illegal-immigrant criminality, or the blingy braggadocio about his wealth and success, but the repeated attacks on the media. (Typically for the billionaire, these attacks were shot through with hyperbole and inaccuracy, such as his claim to have attracted the biggest crowd at the conference, and his complaint that journalists only publish “half-sentences” of such Trump-nuggets as “The American dream is dead,” the second half of which you can read in plenty of other places.) This receptivity to media-bashing is squarely in keeping in what I observed at this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference—the biggest crowdpleasing moments, from Ted Cruz to Carly Fiorina to Jeb Bush to Sean Hannity, were digs at the perfidy of the press…

The three great waves of conservative-media creation—talk radio, Fox News, and post-9/11 websites—were each fueled by a visceral resentment toward being surrounded on all sides by a hostile media establishment. Once a new technology opens up, pissed-off conservatives like Andrew Breitbart come gushing through. So it’s no accident that the long-running kings of each medium (Rush Limbaugh, Bill O’Reilly, and Matt Drudge) have provided among the most sympathetic venues for Donald Trump, for the same reason that Ben Carson and Ted Cruz have been the most reticent in the GOP presidential field to pile on. All of them rely on animus toward the media and establishment, no matter how establishmentarian in their own way each has become…

By judging that the enemy of their enemy might well be a friend, the conservative anti-establishment Establishment has been taking some lumps from other right-of-center commentators (start here and here and here, and work back from the links). It’s hard not to see why. Aside from his sins against libertarianism and basic comportment, Trump makes for a pretty lousy Republican. And his persistent untethering from the truth makes a mockery of the claim that the conservative-media corrective is particularly concerned with being correct.

I confess that I am captivated by the rise of Donald Trump, and wonder just how much this reflects an admiration for him as opposed to a disgust at everyone else. I think the prospect of a Hillary vs. Jeb Bush contest must have something to do with it, but let’s just look at Trump by himself. The guy is an entrepreneur who built up a business empire on his own, who early on cut through red tape to build the Central Park skating rink, and who since then has made his way in spectacular fashion. What’s not to like about that?…

As for his feistiness, again that’s supposed to be a vice? Funny thing is that, in his willingness to speak his mind and his passion, he reminds me more than anyone of John McCain and the 2000 “Straight Talk Express.” Remember when the weak sisters were telling us that McCain had anger issues? Hell, we were surrounded by mild people who were apt to say “but I see value in that too!” Anger can be refreshing, especially when there’s something to be worked up about.

That’s mostly why I like Trump. We need a turnaround, badly, really badly, and he’s one of the few people who seem to get it. Not Bush, not Rubio, sadly not McCain. He understands that Obama has taken the country in a seriously dangerous direction, and that the barriers to mobility have made this a class society.

I can’t wait for the debates!

“I want to run as a Republican. I think I’ll get the nomination,” Trump said in Laredo, Texas, during a nationally televised speech amid his trip to the southern border.
 
“I’m a Republican, I’m a conservative,” Trump said, touting his recent polling figures.
 
“The best way to win is for me to get the nomination,” Trump said.