|Donald Trump didn't know from losing. Even in bankruptcy he came out on top.|
Every bone in my body says not to get over-confident. Okay, I'm not over-confident. That said, Donald Trump -- on August 3rd! -- looks completely unglued. The trouble is, he can't get reglued.
There was a moment when his advisors thought he would "pivot." But the pivot ship has sailed, sans Trump. I sense that it sailed after the Republican National Convention, when Trump thought he'd killed it. he killed something, all right, and that was his chances in the general election.
So what does he do? I was talking to a friend the other day, and she asked what I thought would happen if Trump, who's never outright experienced losing, ended up losing. I said that he'd say, "See, I told you it was rigged."
A few days later, the "rigged" claim is all over the papers. I claim no particular insight. It was obvious for all to see. What he's added, not so cleverly, I feel, is this notion that Hillary has "rigged" the debates. Absolute hooey.
First of all, Clinton had nothing to do with the schedule. Second, the non-partisan Federal Election Committee set the debate schedule on Sept. 23, 2015, well before the NFL set their 2016 schedule, so the notion that it was done purposefully by Hillary Clinton rated the usual Pants On Fire from PolitiFact.
So there you go. Is Trump getting ready to gear up for the general? Not with advertising, he isn't. The Clinton campaign has so far booked around $98 million in ads through the fall. Trump and his allies have booked something like $817,000. Seriously.
So what will Donald Trump do moving forward? Probably more big rallies where he'll look for more outrageous statements to "win the news cycle." He hasn't quite learned that "there's no such thing as bad publicity" doesn't apply to politics the way it does to entertainment.
When that continues to fail -- it isn't working anymore, that's for sure -- get ready for the steady drumbeat of IT'S RIGGED IT'S RIGGED IT'S RIGGED!
I expect Trump, should he continue to slide in the polls, might use the rigged claim to refuse to participate in the debates. If it's because he's afraid of what he might say to a woman on national TV, I'd have to be the first to admit he's finally showing some self-knowledge. A little too late, I'll wager.