Donald Trump is in the process of doing great damage to the Republican Party, but already, his effect has been to destroy half of the candidates in a dramatic way.
Everyone knew that George Pataki and Jim Gilmore had no hope of being the nominee, even though in some ways, they are actually more mainstream than others. But the GOP is not working to be mainstream, which is why they will lose the Presidential Election of 2016.
But others have been damaged badly, and can now be considered out of the race, even though they are refusing to accept reality.
The biggest loser is Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, backed by the Koch Brothers, but being totally inept, indecisive, and weak in his campaign presentations, a very different image than he had as he attacked labor unions in his state.
Rick Perry had hoped he could recover from the debacle of 2012 debates, but he is now down to one paid staffer in Iowa, and is no longer a factor.
Bobby Jindal, one of the most hypocritical of all candidates, has never taken off, and has lost in recent polls any support he seemed to have.
Lindsey Graham is an influential Senator, but totally anemic and embarrassing in his lack of support even in his home state of South Carolina.
Chris Christie has lost his purpose, as Donald Trump is much more of a braggart, a bully, a loud mouth than Christie, so he is done.
Rick Santorum might have ended up second to Mitt Romney in 2012, and won some caucuses and primaries, but lightning will not strike twice for him.
Rand Paul is also pitiful, going nowhere fast, and inconsistent in his libertarianism, and now can purse another Senate race as his state party in Kentucky has agreed to a caucus, instead of a primary for the Presidential race.
So effectively, the Republican race is down to 8 people, much more manageable: Donald Trump, Dr. Benjamin Carson, Carly Fiorina, Jeb Bush, John Kasich, Mike Huckabee, Ted Cruz, and Marco Rubio.
And then, lurking in the background, is Mitt Romney, which would be a sign of desperation for the Republican Party!