I'm gonna say it, right now, on the record, for all to hear. And next year, you can check back on me:
First, a half-prediction. I put it at about 98% chance that Obama is re-elected next year, assuming he's still of fair health and all that. (Mind you, I don't support him, he's an imperialist and corporatist and all that. Just predictin' the future.) It would be 100%, but to be fair, we don't know who he'll be running against yet, so technically, anything could still happen.
More to the point, as long as Barack Obama is on the ballot, there is 0% chance Donald Trump gets elected President next year. Absolutely 0%. You could even stipulate that he gets the Republican nomination (and even that isn't guaranteed). Still, he's got no chance.
What makes me so certain?
First, we tend to think the rich elites in this country favor the Republicans. Not true, exactly. The savvy ones, anyway, favor the cycle, the boom-bust economic cycle, and the corresponding Dem-Rep cycle. If they didn't want Democrats in the White House, then explain how, in 1996, the corporate-owned media fellated Bill Clinton on live TV all year, and then he won in a landslide. The real difference between Democrat and Republican is, the power brokers of this country don't really have to try to get Democrats elected; when they want the Republicans in, then they have to pull all the Diebold voter fraud and other such BS. Anyway, as far as cycles go, people historically tend to vote Republican when the economy's well, and Democrat when the economy's doing bad. People probably would have voted for Trump over Al Gore in 2000, when the economy was great, but not so much today. (I suppose, if the economy magically turns around in one year, this part of my formula would fall apart, but I doubt that's gonna happen.)
Second, there's no way people are voting for DONALD TRUMP when they're having trouble making ends meet. They'll find much more in common with Obama. Heck, they'd find more in common with fucking Paul Allen than Donald Trump right now, and Paul Allen is a gazillionaire.
Third, and this may be a bit cynical, but I don't think many Obama supporters are going to be so disillusioned by his utter failure to come through on most of his promises that they'd, say, vote Green Party (like I do), and they certainly wouldn't turn and vote for Trump. A lot of Obama's supporters don't even seem to acknowledge his policy failures at all - Obamacare gets declared a "victory" *barf*, and his promises on Guantanamo and Iraq and such are just forgotten. (Side prediction: Even if nothing changes with Iraq, Afghanistan, or Guantanamo between now and the election, even with escalation in Libya, expect to see Obama "peace sign" bumper stickers in 2012. A cynical prediction, sure, but I've seen it before.) People just see what they wanna see. If you recall, back in the day, some people referred to Bill Clinton as "the first Black President."
Finally, in regards to Donald Trump, this "birther" buffoonery and related nonsense seals the deal. Yes, there are lots of racists, and racist appeals will win votes, but a lot of people will also see it as plainly ugly. More importantly, an awful lot of fence-sitters will just stare and go "...WuuuuuuuuuuuTF is this bullshit?" I realize it's early, but this is not what a winning campaign looks like. This is the kind of crap candidates pull in October, when the polls say "You're way behind, and you're gonna lose unless you go for broke."
Core right-wingers will absolutely L-O-V-E Donald Trump, but they don't decide national elections by themselves.
Come back and check on me after the election, cuz ah loooooove bein' right!