Are Donald Trump's Presidential Chances Over?
"The events of the last 24 hours slapped America back to adultland," says one expert, while another claims "a Trump candidacy is [still] relevant."
Potential presidential contender Donald Trump has been doing well in the polls, but his political aspirations may have taken a sharp turn off-course over the weekend.
The Celebrity Apprentice star and real estate mogul, who has angered many in Hollywood over his attacks on President Obama, first was the butt of several jokes -- from Seth Meyers and Obama himself -- at Saturday's White House Correspondents Association dinner.
Following the announcement, Trump was mocked on Twitter, with scores of users writing "BREAKING NEWS: Donald Trump demands Osama bin Laden's death certificate" (or some variation of that).
So how do his political chances look now? Politico surveyed several experts, many of whom believe his standing has diminished.
"Donald Trump was the equivalent of shark attacks and Chandra Levy in the summer before 9/11. He was a curiosity. He was outrageous," said CNN's former Washington bureau chief Frank Sesno, who now heads the school of media and public affairs at the George Washington University. "Suddenly, reality sinks in, and he's back where he belongs, which is on the margins."
Added Democratic consultant Jamal Simmons: "Starting with Saturday night, it was pretty clear that Donald Trump was on the downward side of the mountain. He got pretty manhandled by the president at the White House Correspondents Dinner. And then what we all found out [Sunday night] really put into perspective the enormity of the job."
Republican consultant Mike Murphy agrees.
"The events of the last 24 hours slapped America back to adultland," he said. "It's time for the circus to leave town, and Trump will be on one of the wagons."
But not everyone believes Trump's chances at securing the Republican presidential nomination -- should he choose to run -- are over.
"As long as the economy is in the toilet, gas prices are headed to $6 a gallon and Washington is spending and taxing like it is, I certainly think a Trump candidacy is relevant," said political strategist Roger Stone, a Trump ally. "The original premise of his candidacy -- a businessman who can get things done and get the country moving again -- hasn't changed."
On Sunday, Trump has said he has already decided whether he's going to run for president, but he won't make any official announcements until after his NBC show's finale later this month.
"In my mind, I have already decided," Trump told Bloomberg News. "I am going to announce. But I can't do anything until the show ends."