But he is also in a different, more challenging race now.
Within weeks of announcing his candidacy at Trump Tower in NY on June 16, 2015, Trump had taken a commanding lead in the Republican race, defying pundits who were quick to write him off and eclipsing the man many had thought would be crowned on Tuesday night - former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, part of a Republican political dynasty. His signature positions on banning Muslim immigrants and building a wall along the southern US border with Mexico are not major selling point to independents.
It was unclear whether the controversy would have any bearing on how voters view Trump.
CLEVELAND - Donald Trump faces an embarrassing plagiarism scandal that tarnished his wife Melania's prime-time speech to a Republican national convention roiled by an opening day rank-and-file revolt.
Trump appeared via video from Trump Tower in New York City where he was expected to introduce Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, but he made no mention of the Kentucky Republican.
The weird thing is, the person among them who hates Clinton the least may be Donald Trump himself.
"The distraction gets you off message a little bit this morning, but I think we'll get back to action this afternoon", Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus said at a Bloomberg Politics breakfast with journalists. After the Melania trainwreck of Day One, was this now to be an allegory for a convention fast going down the toilet was in the air.
Endangered Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson, one of the few Republicans facing tough re-election match-ups to embrace Trump, will speak, as will New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie - who just lost out in the vice presidential sweepstakes.
Trump's children celebrate his victory.
But the theme of the session - "Make American Work Again" - was far from dominant or even evident in the evening's program.
We're halfway through the Republican National Convention, and with any semblance of doubt about who will be the standard-bearer for the GOP put to rest Tuesday night (Trump officially claimed the nomination in the roll call vote), the party turns its eyes to November.
Big cheers to Ryan's call to unify the party.
Ryan, the party's vice presidential nominee four years ago, earned light applause from the crowd in Cleveland's Quicken Loans Arena. Senator Mitch McConnell, who orchestrated the party's first take-over of the chamber in nearly a decade, was briefly booed when he walked on stage. Instead of sprinkling the address with smart anecdotes about life with her husband to show what he is really like, the speech merely strung together lot of adjectives.
At the convention's half-way point, Democrats could barely contain their glee or hide their anticipation of contrasting the Republican events with their own convention next week. I especially wonder about Jared Kushner, as his father has a harsh reputation when it comes to his employees, a lesson he is said to have tried to instill into his son. "Our convention is going to be the exact opposite". She knew what she was doing.
There is time for Trump to salvage his party's convention.
An official with the campaign of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump suggested the similarity in the section to Michelle Obama's speech may have been the result of an error by her team of speech writers. And he raised eyebrows on the next by deflecting responsibility on the speech fallout to Melania Trump herself.
For the second night, Trump's family delivered his most effective testimonials.
This comes after the Republican presidential nominee's wife, Melania, made a speech at the RNC that contained two passages that matched almost word-for-word the speech the first lady delivered at the DNC in 2008.
Tiffany Trump, the candidate's 22-year-old daughter with ex-wife Marla Maples, sprinkled her remarks with rarely heard anecdotes about her father, including the handwritten notes he left on her childhood report cards.
When describing his father's business, he said from the time he could walk he would see his father in business dealings and that many people in the highest ranks of his business started in blue collar positions, calling him "my mentor, my best friend, my father".
Trump Jr. told CBS News earlier Tuesday that Melania Trump's speechwriters should be to blame.