[…] Trump is trailing Hillary Clinton badly in national polls, sometimes by double digits. Jubilant Democrats are eyeing so-called “red states” such as Georgia and Utah and expanding their ambitions to take both the Senate and House. The Trump campaign has yanked advertising and staff out of Virginia, and major donors are pulling the plug. The writing seems to be on the wall of polling firms, campaign offices and newsrooms across the country.
“So is this presidential election over?” asked Michael Barone, resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute. “Almost certainly.”
In September, Trump appeared competitive. In October, he collapsed. A 2005 video in which he bragged about groping women was followed by a slew of allegations of sexual assault and more than 160 Republican leaders who abandoned Trump. He has declared war on members of his own party, attacking the House speaker, Paul Ryan, and turned to increasingly authoritarian claims, insisting that Clinton must be jailed.
Republicans have started to fear that 8 November will not be the end but rather the beginning of all-out civil war, asking whether Trumpism can survive Trump, and whether those who support him can survive his candidacy. Who can unify the party of Abraham Lincoln? Who can avoid a historic fourth consecutive defeat in the election of 2020?