Jim Geraghty

So much for the diplomatic Donald Trump.

Two days after adopting a more conciliatory tone with his rivals in the Fox Business Network debate, Trump went on what may be his most vicious tirade yet.

Angered by the rise of another candidate he thinks unworthy, Trump lashed out at Ben Carson and at voters in a 90-minute speech in front of a sometimes stunned Iowa crowd. Trump believes he deserves the Republican nomination and appeared angry that voters would be “stupid” enough to believe Carson had the temperament to be president because of teenaged violence.

The biggest problem for Trump here is that he is essentially saying that Iowans are stupid to believe Carson’s conversion story. Trump says that Carson is like a “child molester” in that he will always be the same person who tried to stab a friend in high school. Carson says that when he accepted Jesus as his savior, Carson’s heart changed and the rage that had burned in him was extinguished. Trump says that you’re a fool if you believe Carson. That would make fools out of a lot of people on caucus night.

Trump’s misunderstanding of Christian doctrine has been a big part of why he has been unable to move beyond his voter base. The GOP is overwhelmingly Christian, especially in early primary states. Those who support Trump now may continue to like his insults and put downs, but as far as a path to the nomination… Nope.