For example, it would not surprise me to find that Trump had shafted plenty of veterans and their families, like those former casino employees who lost their health care and retirement funds in the failure of his New Jersey casinos - contrasted with Trump exploiting veterans for political advantage with his fund raising stunt while dodging the Iowa debates. Trump has no history of supporting veterans or of acting on veterans issues, which makes his recent actions at best specious and suspicious. While I would regard anything coming from Pete Hegseth, failed Minnesota right wing nut candidate, now on the payroll of the Koch brothers as a political activist, the criticism that Trump has no new ideas for veterans, no past advocacy for veterans, and is not serious when it comes to his policies for veterans is pretty much on target. And that is just one example of many possible oppo issues that could sink Trump in a general election with voters - including his low information supporters who don't really know who he is, but are swayed by style over substance.
I would argue that neither one has ever been a serious contender to be the presidential nominee for the GOP - and neither have the others who dropped out (left or right). Candidates like Jindal and Perry never had a prayer of winning the nomination, in spite of all their prayer rallies. (Does anyone even remember Perry was briefly a candidate, ....or Jindal?)
A few who still hang on, like Jim Gilmore, John Kasich, and Ben Carson have never really been serious contenders either, they just haven't left yet. Gilmore, for example, got 0% of the New Hampshire primary vote and received 0% of the Iowa caucus vote as well.
I doubt that even most of the political savvy, the most extensively and encyclopedic informed follower of the 2016 election cycle, could readily identify Jim Gilmore without a caption identifying him, and that few more could readily identify Kasich without a label (myself included) among the candidate line ups. Even Carson's advisers and coaches find him to be a joke. I expect that we will see Gilmore and Carson quit soon, with Kasich following their example after South Carolina. I expect Jeb to hang on until April, maybe May. The Bush brand is so badly tarnished, and Jeb is so lacking in any ideas that were not already espoused and implemented by his brother Dubya, that regardless of how much money, or what aging family member Jeb drags out to be his proxy supporters, it is unlikely anything he could do would change the deep disaffection that the country holds for the Bush legacy.
Even though they won the Iowa caucus and the New Hampshire primary, respectively, I would further argue that neither Trump nor Cruz have a serious chance at being the GOP candidate either; the establishment still holds the real power, if less so than in the past. And the establishment doesn't like either one, and are, I expect, going to be successful, ultimately, in preventing them from running under the Grand Old Party imprimatur, with all that goes with the official party approval.
I can only surmise that the candidacies of the unlikely proceeded from some angle, some strategy, that participating as a candidate would in some way pay off afterwards, that it would add some degree of prestige or profit. A few, like Kasich and Fiorina, appear to have been /appear to be running more for the second spot on the ticket of VP.
Steve walks warily down the street,
With the brim pulled way down low
Ain't no sound but the sound of his feet,
Machine guns ready to go
Are you ready, Are you ready for this
Are you hanging on the edge of your seat
Out of the doorway the bullets rip
To the sound of the beat
[Chorus] Another one bites the dust
Another one bites the dust
And another one gone, and another one gone
Another one bites the dust
Hey, I'm gonna get you too
Another one bites the dust see the rest of the lyrics here: https://www.bing.com/search?q=queen+youtube+channel%2C+another+one+bites+the+dust&pc=MOZI&form=MOZTSB
And then there's the progress of 'the Donald' Turnip-top Trump.... which can only remind me of another Queen classic:
lyrics here: https://www.bing.com/search?q=lyrics%2C+don%27t+stop+me+now&pc=MOZI&form=MOZTSB