The Establishment's Candidate Wants You to Know He is Running Against the Establishment

John Boehner praised Trump and talked about playing golf with him. Mitch McConnell is firmly in his camp. The entire party leadership structure went out of their way to make sure his coronation at the convention went smoothly. But, by God, Donald Trump wants you to know that he is running against the GOP Establishment, because the term “Establishment” has lost all meaning whatsoever during this election cycle.

“I am running against the Washington insiders, just like I did in the Republican Primaries,” Trump wrote on Twitter Tuesday morning. “These are the people that have made U.S. a mess!”

The Manhattan billionaire’s campaign is working to get back on the rails in the wake of its worst week yet. Trump spent the week after the well-received Democratic National Convention feuding with the Gold Star parents of a fallen Muslim solider and with prominent lawmakers in his own party. Clinton’s convention bump combined with a week of negative headlines have put Trump in a hole that most polls show to be 10 points or more.

See, Donald Trump is trying to score points from the Ted Cruz playbook, accept he’s not creative enough to come up with a term like “Washington Cartel.” Instead, he’s going to use a tired old term and hope it’s enough to rally people, because he’s drowning in the polls. It’s his only chance to try to rally a conservative base that, despite the loud, white supremacist voices, is not really as devoted to him as you’d think.

See, Trump’s real problem is that he’s been too fringe. He’s not securing the traditional conservative vote because he’s never had any traditional conservative impulses. So, it’s no surprise he’s going back to a more “mainstream” talking point like “TEH ESTABLISHMENT!!!!!!” because that’s something more conservatives care about.

Trump’s outburst today comes in response to several dozen national security officials condemning him as “unfit” to be president. Which they were not wrong to say. Because he is. He is unfit. And the best part? His supporters don’t always rush to defend him. They’ll just start attacking Hillary as (more?) unfit.