I know you were all waiting to hear Michael Steele’s opinion of the Trump campaign putting Breitbart News’ Bannon in an actual important role in their campaign. After all, if you can’t trust the instincts of a man who was unceremoniously dumped from the RNC after repeated electoral failures and rampant allegations of mismanagement of RNC finances, then who can you trust?
And boy oh boy does Steele not disappoint:
MICHAEL STEELE heartily backs Bannon-led Trump campaign… “It’s magical. Pissing off the right people. That’s what it’s designed to do.”
— Robert Costa (@costareports) August 17, 2016
Magical, you guys. Because it pisses people off.
Maybe I am crazy but I think that a campaign that has now sunk below 40% in the national polls should not be in the business of looking for additional people to piss off. I feel like they should be instead looking for people to win to their side.
Moreover, this whole schtick of “pissing off the Republican establishment” worked great in the primary, insofar as a win with about 40% of the vote can be said to have “worked great.” But in the general election, who the hell would even possibly care that isn’t already converted to Trump’s side?
I’ll say this: you can make an argument that letting Trump be Trump is the only play Trump has left. The whole “pivot to being a relatively normal human being” thing is not working out for Trump. He is horrible at reading from a TelePrompTer, he still veers off into tangents that get him in trouble, and he is boring and uninteresting to watch on television. I think the appeal of the unscripted Trump has probably already reached his apex but gambling that it hasn’t seems like the only reasonable play left for Trump if he actually wants to win.
The problem he’s going to face is that the elected Republicans who are standing in the blast radius are not going to put up with it. They are already pretty much at the end of what they are willing to stand by and let Trump get away with saying, without completely abandoning him – even those who have made firm endorsements. And the RNC’s threat to cut off Victory funds is very much real if it continues. So the strategy has a very real chance to backfire in a big way in terms of Trump’s own chances of avoiding a truly historic defeat. But in terms of actually having a chance at a win, it might be the only one he has.