Emerging Theme: Trump May Be Unstoppable GOP establishment seems to have given up trying to defeat him By Newser Editors, Newser Staff Posted Jan 15, 2016 1:41 PM CST 293 comments Comments Donald Trump speaks during the Fox Business Network debate on Thursday. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton) (Newser) – One clear theme seems to be emerging after Thursday night's debate: Donald Trump is looking stronger than ever: Sure, Jeb Bush may have challenged Trump's idea to ban Muslims during Thursday's debate, but he did so almost as a "supplicant," meekly asking Trump to reconsider, writes Jonathan Chait at New York. It's emblematic of something larger: "Those of us who believed Republican elites would kill Trump’s candidacy out of self-preservation have to face the increasingly plausible prospect that, for whatever reason, they may lay down their arms before a shot has been fired." "That was the question left hanging at the conclusion: Have they all missed their chance to take down Trump?" writes Cathleen Decker at the Los Angeles Times. "What was unthinkable a few months ago no longer is," writes Dan Balz at the Washington Post. "Trump’s durability in national polls and his standing in the early states have forced GOP leaders—and all his rivals—to confront the possibility that the New York billionaire and reality TV star could end up leading the party into the fall campaign against the Democrats." Ted Cruz may have gotten the better of his exchange with Trump over Cruz's eligibility, but the very fact that Cruz was answering the question at all is a testament to how thoroughly Trump has dictated this primary season, writes Rick Klein at ABC News. He may yet lose, but the debate "revealed the extent to which Trump has already won." "All in all, it was a very good evening for Trump. This late in the game, a single debate is unlikely to drastically change the existing dynamics," writes Josh Voorhees at Slate. "That, of course, will be just fine with Trump."